USC quarterback Matt Barkley has three passes intercepted
That might not be noteworthy if Barkley was the designated backup, but with Aaron Corp sidelined because of a leg injury, Barkley is in position to make a run at starting the opener against San Jose State on Sept. 5.
On a day when Trojans' receivers dropped multiple passes, senior safety Josh Pinkard and freshman defensive back Byron Moore picked off Barkley throws into the end zone during seven-on-seven drills. Freshman linebacker Jarvis Jones intercepted a pass during a scrimmage drill.
Quarterbacks coach Jeremy Bates said he wasn't concerned because the the interceptions resulted from advanced plays that Barkley was asked to execute.
Coach Pete Carroll appeared more concerned about equipping Barkley with tools to move past the miscues.
"I said, 'OK, that's a good day to come back from.' And he says, 'Yeah, I'll try,'" said Carroll, who told the quarterback, "'What do you mean try?'
"So we're working on our language and how we're going to deal with situations. It's all part of molding the mentality that it takes. He's thrown interceptions before. He's come back and played great and he'll do that, I'm sure."
Barkley doesn't have to wait long. The Trojans practice again at 4 p.m.
-- Gary Klein
Photo: USC freshman quarterback Matt Barkley. Credit: Lawrence K. Ho / Los Angeles Times