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Kiffin not sold on diminutive but productive McNeal

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08:20 AM ET 10.17 | For the most part, the numbers are on USC running back Curtis McNeal's side. In six games this season, McNeal has carried 41 times for 289 yards -- 7 yards a carry. But listed at a generous 5 feet 7 and 180 pounds, concerns about his durability might keep USC coach Lane Kiffin from making him the team's featured back against Notre Dame on Saturday in South Bend, Ind. "He's trying to (prove to me that his body can handle a lot of carries), but he hasn't," Kiffin said. ... But with senior running back Marc Tyler nursing a dislocated left shoulder, forcing his left arm into a sling Sunday at practice, McNeal -- the team's second leading rusher -- would seem to be the logical replacement.

The Orange County Register

Lane Kiffin, Getty Images Lane Kiffin, Getty Images
Comment #1 has been removed
October 17, 2011  08:48 AM ET

When injuries hit teams usually have to dig deep into the depth chart. By this time of the year inuries normally start piling up. Just deal with it.

October 17, 2011  08:49 AM ET
QUOTE(#1):

Well if you know something about his durability then spill it. Otherwise let him play.

Yeah, I agree!! Why is this even an issue?? The Trojans have other good backup running backs, McNeal can touch the ball 15 to 20 times a game!!!!!!

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October 17, 2011  09:16 AM ET

Lattimore the best RB in the nation, if he could stay healthy. As it is, I'm still going with Trent Richardson.

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Comment #13 has been removed
October 17, 2011  09:48 AM ET
QUOTE(#12):

Oh brother. Nation is a stretch but yeah, you can give it to TR as a default option.

Bah, gotta give Hillman some props on this thread-he is certainly the best RB in the state of CA and he runs behind a fairly pedestrian O-line.

October 17, 2011  09:55 AM ET
QUOTE(#14):

Bah, gotta give Hillman some props on this thread-he is certainly the best RB in the state of CA and he runs behind a fairly pedestrian O-line.

Good point AP. Put some of the lesser known RBs behind o-lines like Bama, LSU, Wisky, etc and watch some of those guys take off. They'll get to run behind better lines in the pros.

October 17, 2011  10:03 AM ET
QUOTE(#13):

UGA will prob win the East now, being their schedule is easier.

I sure hope so, that way it would make Boise State look pretty damn good, huh???? LOL.

October 17, 2011  10:03 AM ET

Hats off to U$C.....I for one thought this year would be a train wreck for them. They are a lot like Auburn and refuse to fall back to earth as hard as everyone thought they would.

IMO, the sanctions will really start hurting them in the next 2-3 yrs, but they have excelled beyond expectations this year.

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October 17, 2011  10:10 AM ET
QUOTE(#17):

Hats off to U$C.....I for one thought this year would be a train wreck for them. They are a lot like Auburn and refuse to fall back to earth as hard as everyone thought they would. IMO, the sanctions will really start hurting them in the next 2-3 yrs, but they have excelled beyond expectations this year.

WPS, I don't really believe USC is all that good this year!!!! Yes they are decent, but I still think they will lose two to three more games this year. I guess a 9-4 record would result in a pretty good year.

October 17, 2011  10:14 AM ET
QUOTE(#15):

Good point AP. Put some of the lesser known RBs behind o-lines like Bama, LSU, Wisky, etc and watch some of those guys take off. They'll get to run behind better lines in the pros.

Thanks. Of course the filp side of the argument is that SDSU runs on a few easier teams than TR and Lattimore do-although some of the warm up teams the big teams play in SEP are easier than tSUN and WSU were this year for SDSU.

At the end of the season it will all even out. IMHO TR is the best RB this year that I have seen though.

October 17, 2011  10:16 AM ET
QUOTE(#18):

Hillman was one that came to mind for me as well. Some guys don't get the touches or don't run behind an nfl ready line. Crowell is no slouch, Whaley, even, as much as it pains me to say so, Michael with the ags is very good.

Next year the Texas running game may be close to the best in the nation... If the O-line comes together your QB/RB combo may be next to impossible for most teams to stop.

 
October 17, 2011  10:17 AM ET
QUOTE(#19):

WPS, I don't really believe USC is all that good this year!!!! Yes they are decent, but I still think they will lose two to three more games this year. I guess a 9-4 record would result in a pretty good year.

LK is holding the team back. With the NFL talent on this year's team they should at most lose two games...

He may be a great recruiter, but in game he does not measure up to the best of his peers.

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