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Mitch Mustain, Bust, and Other Early Practice Stuff

Mitch Mustain told the L.A. Times his first practice at USC was "about what I expected," but the Daily News' Scott Wolf drew the exact opposite conclusion about the Trojans' golden boy du jour. In his own words:

"It was kind of frustrating for me today," Mustain said. "It wasn't so much the physical stuff, I was accurate and had zip on the ball but my timing was off and there were too many mental errors.

"The hard part was mentally and not making mistakes."

Mental mistakes? It's all over. Stick a fork in him. Bring on Aaron Corp!

Joe McKnight and his extra gear, on the other hand, was one of three tailbacks - along with Allen Bradford and Chauncey Washington - who made the early 'impressive' list:

Freshman tailback Joe McKnight...lived up to his billing on opening day with lots of catches out of the backfield.

"He's really smooth and has great fluid movement about him," USC coach Pete Carroll said. "We did a lot of stuff with him and he was all over the place.

"And we'll continue to get a lot things thrown his way. He was very comfortable with it. He had a couple balls get away but he has fantastic hands."

Good hands man.
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"We did a lot of stuff with him and he was all over the place." I'm interested to see some Bush-like creativity out of McKnight's role, especially with the potential issues re: a go-to receiver. After years of wrecking gameplans with Bush out of the backfield - and hell, Malefou McKenzie and Sultan McCullough combined for more than 50 receptions in 2002 - no running back had more than nine catches last year, and only two passes out of the backfield went for touchdowns.

Ohio State: Not that he got to see much, but the Columbus Dispatch's Bob Hunter thinks Ohio State's quarterbacks look fabulous, "as good as any four guys I've even seen passing footballs 10 yards in practice." What else would you like to know?

On a related note, Bob Hunter looks a lot like a sweater-clad H.L. Mencken. Minus the racism or fascistic sympathies, one hopes.

UCLA: What is this, some kind of mirage? UCLA receivers got up the field and got the ball.

Florida: Tim Tebow will start at quarterback for Florida. After that? No freakin' clue, man. Not as long as Cam Newton is an academic/injury casualty, anyway, which may not be that long.

 * Alabama: Tide fans are not so high on Chris Capps, okay? Nice kid and all, but barely-submerged 'Baman rage boils into a Tourrette's-worthy screed against the senior-to-be every time they have to drive by a "Honk If You Sacked Brodie" sticker, because everyone, indeed, could have sacked Brodie, if they were going against Chris Capps (#72):

Chris Capps is the reason this clip is titled, "The most realistic game ever made."

Tider frustration only escalated as Capps somehow fended off Kyle Tatum on the right side last year. So if a mostly unheralded sophomore is taking the right tackle job from a two-year starter - Capps was held out of the spring afer surgery and is practicing now on the left side behind immovable Andre Smith - well, that's just another reason to love Nick Saban.

Northwestern: Either Northwestern freshmen have taken conditioning to heart in anticipation of a first-day conditioning test, or coaches have made the test easier, in the venerable tradition of Leave No Child Behind. Pat Fitzgerald's giving the noobs the benefit of the doubt.

Tulane: You know who the Green Wave need to emulate? Rice!