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Practice Report: USC Football Kicks Off First Fall Camp of Lincoln Riley Era

Aug 5, 2022

The Trojans didn't wait for the sun to fully rise before kicking off their first practice of the 2022 season. Excitement and anticipation fueled the team's early start Friday (Aug. 5), as a new era of USC football began.

"It's been a long road for this group to get to this point," head coach Lincoln Riley said following the team's inaugural practice. "This group has been challenged in a lot of different ways, and they've continued to respond."

While Trojans donned just jerseys and helmets Friday, the lack of pads didn't affect the team's intensity. Sweat continuously dripped off players, who practiced like it was the middle of camp rather than the first day.

"I think you just create that expectation coming into it," Riley explained. "We grinded these guys all spring. We had a very demanding summer. They were prepared to come in here. I don't think anybody was shocked by the pace of practice or amount of reps we took, or even the physicality even though we didn't have pads on."

It was a successful first practice in Riley's eyes, but the head coach was quick to note that there is a long way to go until the team is ready for primetime.

"The [team's] execution was good for a first day; it won't be good for a second day," Riley said. "You just have to keep climbing. You've got to keep building."

"It's enough to get excited about, but we're not gonna go home right now. We still got a little work to do," Riley said with a laugh.

Notes from USC's first practice of camp:

  • Speedy newcomers Jordan Addison and Raleek Brown made their Trojan debut Friday. Riley shared his initial thoughts:

    • On Addison: "He's very attentive. You coach the details, and then you see it show up on the field pretty quickly. He made some nice plays for us today. Obviously, he's a proven player in his past. He's got to come prove it here, but he had a really strong day."

    • On Brown: "His speed on the field is noticeable. Athletically he's one of the guys that certainly stands out with speed and explosion."

  • Sophomore inside linebacker transfer Eric Gentry had a noticeable presence on the field due to his 6'6 frame. Riley noted Friday that Gentry has been "a real positive addition so far."

  • True freshman defensive back Zion Branch, who tore his ACL over the summer, was in attendance for USC's first practice. He watched from the sidelines in a knee brace.

  • Wide receiver C.J. Williams, defensive backs Domani Jackson and Briton Allen participated in USC's practice after sitting out for the majority of spring camp.

New numbers to know:

  • Defensive lineman Nick Figueroa, who previously wore No. 50, now dons 99. The redshirt senior wore that number during his stint in junior college.

  • Defensive back Bryson Shaw, who transferred from Ohio State as a redshirt junior this summer, wears 27.

  • True freshman running back Raleek Brown sports the number 14.

  • Wide receiver Michael Jackson III, who previously wore No. 13, now wears the No. 9.

  • Wide receiver Jordan Addison wears the once-retired No. 3, after Trojan legend Carson Palmer gave his blessing.

  • Redshirt senior defensive lineman Solomon Byrd, who transferred from Wyoming this summer, dons No. 51.

Friday's media availability: