*Hey sports fans...the top 25 countdown rolls on to lucky number 21: USC
*The Matt Barkley era is over in Southern California for Lane Kiffin and the bunch. The question is, who is going to replace number seven? Freshman Max Browne or Max Wittek? Cody Kessler is trying to make a run for the spot as well. Whoever starts, Marqise Lee will be there top target. He has put up video game-like numbers the past two years and looks to do so this year.
*Kiffin enters his fourth year with USC and this is the year he has to show something. He has posted a 25-13 record at USC going 0 for 1 in bowl games which doesn't cut it. The schedule cuts them a break with Stanford coming to the Rose Bowl and the slate is a fairly easy one with no Oregon. They do go to Oregon State on a Friday night which could spell trouble as I think the Beavers are a sleeper team.
*If USC goes 7-6 again, the Lane Kiffin era might be over. Regular season record: 10-3
Good read on Manziel by CBSSports.com columnist Gregg Doyel Johnny Football to Canada?
*Pat Sweeney and I were at UND football media day and have about 45 minutes worth of interviews. Expect a lot of pigskin in your sportscast over the next week.
*Ryan Bartels and Joe Mollberg are some cool cats for being freshmen. As the two battle it out at the quarterback position, the anticipation for who is going to start is only to grow. Both say all the right things but more importantly, their teammates are saying all the right things about them. Teammates are saying Bartels and Mollberg are showing great leadership in the huddle and Ryan and Joe said they're embracing the role of being team leaders.
*The keys to this year's defense is stopping the run and forcing turnovers. Just ask them. Carr, Goodman, and Finley all said those were the keys to this year's defense being better than last.
*More on UND tomorrow and we take a look at the number 20 team.