USC Football: 6 Players Who Need to Turn It Around in Spring Practice

Rick McMahan@@RickMcMahanSenior Writer IApril 6, 2014

USC Football: 6 Players Who Need to Turn It Around in Spring Practice

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    Max Browne
    Max BrowneMark J. Terrill

    A bit more than halfway through spring practice and head coach Steve Sarkisian and his staff are getting a handle on just what they have for the 2014 college football season.

    For the players themselves, many of the guys USC knew they would count on this season have not disappointed while others have been a pleasant surprise for all concerned.

    However, there are some players who need to crank it up as soon as possible if they want to leave a lasting impression on the coaching staff as they prepare for the fall.

    This slideshow will look at some of these players who need to find a sense of urgency if they want to make their mark in 2014.

    So without further delay, here are some Trojans who need to dial it up sooner rather than later...

D.J. Morgan (Running Back)

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    Jack Dempsey

    D.J. Morgan came to the Trojans as a heralded 4-star running back out of Taft High School in Woodland Hills, CA.

    Blessed with blazing (4.4 40 time) speed, Morgan has been on the cusp of greatness almost every year he has played for USC, but unfortunately injuries have gotten in the way throughout his career.

    Now a redshirt senior, Morgan needs to find some good health if he wants to finally make his mark in 2014.

Aundrey Walker (Offensive Lineman)

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    Photo from

    There was a time when Aundrey Walker was thought to be the next first-round NFL offensive lineman coming out of USC.

    However, injuries and inconsistency has plagued big Aundrey and now coming back from an injury suffered in last years UCLA game finds Walker as a senor who is running out of time.

    Walker still has the talent to be something special, now he just has to find a way to put it all together.

    Though sidelined with injury for the spring, Walker needs to get his head right now so he can be a force in the fall.

Greg Townsend (Defensive Lineman)

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    Photo from

    Coming out of Beverly Hills High School in Beverly Hills, Calif., Greg Townsend had everything one looks for in a defensive lineman.

    Big and talented and with a solid football pedigree (his father played for years in the NFL), Townsend was a star in the making for the Trojans. Or so everyone thought.

    Instead, Townsend has had a bevy of problems getting established at USC, as injuries and inconsistency has marked his Trojan career.

    Now a junior, Townsend needs to turn some heads soon if he wants to establish a legacy for the Cardinal and Gold.

Anthony Brown (Cornerback)

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    Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

    If it seems like cornerback Anthony Brown has been around forever, well, he has.

    A member of the 2010 class, the redshirt senior has had ample opportunity to shine for the Trojans but injuries have held him back.

    Now with time running out, Brown needs to find his health right away and contribute in this, his last season of eligibility.

    Brown is a great athlete who has been snake bitten in his Trojan career but there is still time for him to make his mark if he can stay on the field of play.


Gerald Bowman (Safety)

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    Robert Laberge/Getty Images

    Gerald Bowman was a 5-star junior college transfer from Pierce college (Woodland Hills, CA) who had everyone excited about his ability to dominate from the safety position.

    Things haven't quite worked out as Bowman would have liked, though, as a steep learning curve combined with injuries have kept him from the stardom for which he seemed destined.

    Now granted an extra year of eligibility after being hurt in 2013, Bowman has an opportunity to contribute for a unit that needs his help.

    Bowman is having a pretty good spring so far, and now he has to hope it translates to the fall and the 2014 college football season.

George Farmer Jr. (Wide Receiver)

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    Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images

    Speaking of a fabulous talent who has had nothing go right in his Trojan career, meet wide receiver George Farmer Jr.

    Farmer, a 5-star prospect from the 2011 class, had "star" written all over him before a series of nagging injuries was culminated by a devastating knee injury last spring.

    Now close to healthy, Farmer is attempting to recapture the promise of stardom that seemed his destiny not so long ago.

    Either way, Farmer needs to turn his fortunes around as soon as possible.


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    Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

    This slideshow has featured six players whose time as Trojans are slowly running out but they are not the only USC players who are feeling a sense of urgency.

    USC's roster features other players who would like to get their careers going including guys like cornerbacks, Ryan Henderson and Ryan Dillard among others.

    For a scholarship strapped program such as USC's, there is nothing that the coaching staff would like more than to see these players come into their own in 2014.

    For Steve Sarkisian and his staff, it would present a fortuitous problem if these Trojan "dark horses" would make depth chart decisions tough on them.

    In fact, that is a problem any coaching staff would love to have, scholarship reductions or not.


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