Former Trojan football players make NFL impact

first_imgFormer USC quarterback Sam Darnold steps back in the pocket to throw a pass at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. (Emily Smith | Daily Trojan)USC continued its annual tradition of sending multiple players to the NFL, with four Trojans selected in the 2018 Draft and others signed to teams as undrafted free agents. With this year’s four draft picks, the Trojans have had 504 players drafted into the league, the most of any school in the country. Here’s a look at this year’s Trojan draft class and the undrafted free agents with a chance to make an impact on NFL rosters this season.QB Sam DarnoldRound 1, Pick 3 Overall New York JetsThe Rose Bowl winning signal caller will begin his NFL career in the Big Apple, looking to turn around a Jets team that went a 10-22 over the last two years. Though he was picked to be their quarterback of the future, he’ll have to fight for the opportunity to start Week 1 of the season, as he’ll compete with veteran quarterbacks Josh McCown and Teddy Bridgewater for that chance. Darnold has performed fairly well so far through two preseason games, going 21-of-29 passing for 158 yards, a touchdown and an interception. Although Bridgewater and McCown have played well to this point, reports suggest that the team might be leaning toward letting the former Trojan start under center Week 1.RB Ronald Jones IIRound 2, Pick 38 OverallTampa Bay Buccaneers Jones was the fourth running back selected in this years draft, going to a Bucs team desperately in need of playmaking from the tailback position. So far, Jones has ceded the starting role to Payton Barber, but has shared some of the first team work with him. Jones has struggled thus far in the offseason, with reports of trouble in pass protection and ball security, as well as subpar performances in the two preseason games to date. Jones is still a uniquely talented player, and the Buccaneers use of a second round pick on him shows the faith they have in him to be a dynamic part of their offense. If he can flip the switch soon, he has the opportunity to have a big year down in Tampa.OLB Uchenna Nwosu Round 2, Pick 48 Overall Los Angeles ChargersThe edge rusher had a huge season for the Trojans last year, serving as a terror to opposing quarterbacks with 9.5 sacks and 14 pass breakups. His production earned him a high draft spot from the Chargers, with whom he’ll be able to play in his home city of Carson, Calif. The Chargers add Nwosu to a front seven already featuring Pro-Bowlers Melvin Ingram and Joey Bosa, a fact that should open up plenty of opportunities for the ex-Trojan as a pass-rusher. He’s impressed so far through the offseason, drawing rave reviews from coaches and teammates, and has done well in the preseason, securing a sack in his first game and adding a number of quarterback pressures in both his performances.DE Rasheem GreenRound 3, Pick 79 Overall Seattle SeahawksSomewhat an enigma of a prospect, projected everywhere from the first to the fourth round during the pre-draft process, Rasheem Green has probably gotten off to the hottest start of all the Trojans entering the league this year. Through two preseason contests, Green has racked up an  impressive three sacks, 13 tackles and seven quarterback hits. The Seahawks are in desperate need of players to step up on the defensive line after the departures of Pro-Bowlers Michael Bennett, Sheldon Richardson and Cliff Avril this year. If Green continues to maintain his stellar level of play through the season, he’ll make a huge difference for a reloading Seahawks defense.WR Deontay BurnettUndrafted Free Agent Tennessee TitansOne of the bigger surprises of this year’s draft for the Trojans was Burnett going undrafted after a year, where he led the Trojans in receiving, posting an impressive statline of 1,114 yards and 9 touchdowns. He seems to have been a steal so far for the Titans, who lack strong options at the wide receiver position. Burnett has performed remarkably well so far for the Titans in training camp, developing a strong chemistry with quarterback Marcus Mariota as well as showcasing great route running and hands. He’s been nagged by some injuries in the preseason so far, but managed to make some nice plays in the last game. Look for him to potentially become an important part of Tennessee’s passing attack.WR Steven MitchellUndrafted Free Agent Los Angeles RamsMitchell went undrafted after another unspectacular but solid season at USC, finding an opportunity to play in the Coliseum once more as an undrafted free agent for the Rams. He’s impressed his coaches so far, and has made some nice plays throughout training camp and the preseason. On a team lacking any real wide receiver depth, Mitchell has a chance to make the roster or practice squad this year. He’ll be fighting to get a spot on the team’s final 53-man roster over the next few weeks.last_img read more

Diego Costa strikes in injury time to rescue draw for Chelsea against Manchester United

first_imgDiego Costa’s injury-time equaliser robbed under-fire Manchester United boss, Louis van Gaal, of a vital victory as Chelsea maintained their unbeaten run under Guus Hiddink.The pre-match build-up was dominated by reports that the Red Devils had approached Jose Mourinho to become their next manager, but the visitors looked to have earned their Dutch coach a stay of execution courtesy of Jesse Lingard’s superb second-half opener.However, the Blues snatched a share of the spoils at the death as Costa continued his resurgence in front of goal under Hiddink with a composed finish from a tight angle.It was hard on United who had looked to have built upon one of their finest displays of the season against Stoke with another dominant showing. For long spells the Red Devils were left to lament the brilliance of Thibaut Courtois while at the other end David De Gea produced some magnificent late saves to ensure they didn’t leave the Bridge empty-handed.The result leaves United six points adrift of fourth-placed Manchester City, while Van Gaal’s hopes of a late title tilt look unlikely as they are now 12 adrift of leaders Leicester City.Chelsea will be delighted with the point and buoyed by stretching their unbeaten run under Hiddink to 10 matches as they aim to avoid the prospect of becoming the first Premier League champions to finish the following season outside the top seven. –Follow Joy Sports on Twitter: @JoyFMSports. Our hashtag is #JoySportslast_img read more

‘Don’t Vote on Sentiments’

first_imgRep. Rick TowehRep. Toweh tells voters in TappitaRepresentative Ricks Toweh (Nimba County District #6) has called on the citizens of his district not to vote on sentiments, saying they should rather vote for an individual who can do or deliver.Speaking in Tappita at the Liberty Party campaign rally recently, Toweh cautioned voters to be mindful of making their decisions on October 10 and urged them to vote for “someone who is able to carry development in their communities and the district in general.”Meanwhile, Toweh called on the voters to vote for him to continue development initiatives he has undertaken in the district.Although Toweh has been heavily criticized for not doing enough in the district since he was elected in 2011, he outlined several achievements, including schools, road rehabilitation, and creation of jobs for the young people as proof.He mentioned the construction of a school in Gbanapea; advocating for the rehabilitation of the Graie–Behwalay Road, a project funded by USAID; and the rehabilitation of the Dialah–Kweepea Road, which he said was done with money from his pocket, as more proof of his work for the district.Rep. Toweh said if elected for the second term, he will build a medical college in Tappita, will ensure that Tappita has a modern drinking water facility and electrify the city.He was elected on the ticket of the defunct National Union of Democratic Progress of Senator Prince Johnson in 2011. There have been lots of criticisms of his failure to deliver to his people during his six years in power.Toweh is one of the representatives who is yet to identify any project sponsored by the Legislative Support Fund.The Chief Compound in Tappita, which was earmarked as one of the projects he was undertaking, is still in ruins, while shortage of chairs has remained one of some of the factors affecting the public school in Nimba County District #6.The district has 24,015 registered voters, with about 21 voting centers, according to the National Elections Commission’s final voter registration report.There are over 10 representative candidates vying for the lone district seat.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more