Notes, quotes and video from Friday's morning practice:
Practice was light, once again -- especially with the extra-early 8 a.m. start time. The switch from the normal 8:45 start was made to allow the evening practice to be moved up and allow proper recovery time before Saturday's scrimmage.
Freshman cornerback Nickell Robey has taken the lead to start at corner across from Shareece Wright, Kiffin said. Robey will slide over to the slot in nickel situations and Torin Harris and Brian Baucham will compete to be the third corner.
Defensive back Demetrius Wright and quarterback Jesse Scroggins -- both incoming freshmen -- were unable to practice because of NCAA Clearinghouse issues. The two players were allotted 14 days of practice time while the NCAA reviewed their cases but have not been cleared to continue practicing with the team "Hopefully that will be resolved very quickly and they will come back," Kiffin said. "They were two guys who we thought were doing really well for us."
Fullback Soma Vainuku, who signed with USC earlier this year but has yet to enroll, may not come to school until the spring semester. Kiffin said he still has classes he has to take care of this fall. The loss of Vainuku would put the Trojans' 2010 recruiting class at 17 players.
The left guard position is still decimated by injuries, with Khaled Holmes (neck stinger) still day-to-day and many of the other players competing to start at the position recovering from injuries. Michael Reardon participated Friday. Kiffin said that the injury situation is making it very difficult to pick a starter at the spot -- something the coaching staff is hoping to do shortly after Saturday's scrimmage.
Final notes: The Trojans will return to the field at 4:15 p.m. for the evening portion of two-a-days...Saturday's 4 p.m. scrimmage will precede another off day Sunday before the fall semester starts for all the players...Backup quarterback Mitch Mustain spent the majority of practice doing up-downs and other one-man drills as a penalty for an unspecified violation.
Kiffin addressed the media after Friday's practice, talking about the decision to put Robey in the lead to start at corner, growing injury issues and more. Hear what the coach had to say: