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  The past few seasons, the USC run game has had too many cooks in the backfield. Since the end of Ronald Jones II's junior year in 2017, the Trojans have employed a by-committee approach at running back only to finish in the bottom-quarter of Pac-12 rushing attacks each time. After bottoming out in 2020, averaging the fewest ground yards per game in the conference, USC is looking for a different approach in 2021, searching this spring and during the summer for a pair of leading backs. Or, as position coach Mike Jinks puts it, 1A and 1B. "It's exciting," senior back Vavae Malepeai said of the opportunity. "We all just focus on what's in front of us and where our feet is. It's a matter of enjoying the process and making sure we trust the process."

So far at spring camp, there have been four contenders for the two jobs. Malepeai and fellow senior Stephen Carr are the two returners, while Texas transfer Keaontay Ingram and freshman Brandon Campbell have entered the fray. Of the four, Carr had the best performance at the spring game two weeks ago. He had eight carries for 53 yards and a touchdown and a catch for an extra 13 yards. Overall, Carr has looked healthy for the first time in years, with an explosive burst at the line of scrimmage. "I feel like I understand more of what I'm doing on the football field," Carr said. "I'm playing more comfortable, not thinking as much, making full-speed decisions." - Orange County Register


(DS#30 RB) rSr/2022 RB Stephen CarrSouthern California
News Source: Orange County Register


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