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USC football: Mitch Mustain finally getting some kicks

September 17, 2009 |  8:42 am

Mitch USC quarterback Mitch Mustain has had a tough time breaking into the Trojans lineup since transferring from Arkansas in 2007.

Now it looks like he might find his way onto the field with his leg rather than his arm.

Mustain piqued Coach Pete Carroll's interest when he bombed some punts during a Friday walkthrough at Ohio State last week. So Mustain worked at quarterback and punter during Wednesday's practice.

Mustain's eventual ascent to the top of the depth chart as a punter might not be as far-fetched as it seems. Walk-on Billy O'Malley has struggled in the first two games and Carroll seems reluctant to give Jake Harfman more responsibility than handling kickoffs.

And imagine the fourth-down anxiety opponents would feel every time Mustain lined up in the ultimate shotgun formation?

With Matt Barkley nursing a shoulder bruise and Aaron Corp coming off a knee injury, I asked Mustain earlier this week if he felt like he was only a few plays away from finally getting his chance.

 "I'm prepared and ready to go," he said.

Apparently as a two-way threat.

-- Gary Klein

Photo: Mitch Mustain. Credit: Jae C. Hong / Associated Press