Former USC defensive end Everson Griffen continues to impress NFL scouts with his measurables, running the 40-yard dash in a hand-held 4.59 seconds on the USC campus here in L.A. today.
At the Indianapolis combine earlier this month, the 6-4, 278-lb Griffen ran an electronic-timed 4.66 40 and bench-pressed 225 lbs 32 times. His 40 time was second among defensive lineman. Despite those numbers, Griffen’s on-field inconsistency last season has him pegged as a mid-1st to mid-2nd round draft pick.
With Taylor Mays and Joe McKnight not lifting or running because they were satisfied with their Indy results, the only other notable result from the USC pro day today was from Stafon Johnson.
Gary Klein of the LOS ANGELES TIMES and Ted Miller of ESPN.com update us today on the condition of Stafon Johnson. Johnson and his doctors held at press conference today before the USC-Stanford game, and the news is encourage, to say the least.
Dr. Jason Hamilton said Johnson is making tremendous progress. He no longer requires a breathing or feeding tube and is eating solid foods.
“Anyone looking at him today or heard the story would say it’s miraculous,” Hamilton said. “He’s an athlete. He’s determined. He’s never believed he’s the underdog, and you can see the results.”
Most impressively, Johnson spoke today. Read more…
Here’s the first photo I’ve seen of Stafon Johnson as he makes his recovery from a serious weightlifting accident.
(The barbell on Stafon’s shirt? Noted.)
David Wharton of the L.A. TIMES updates:
Johnson is up and moving around and no longer requires a feeding tube, Carroll said. However, he is limited to a liquid diet and has not spoken.
“They don’t even let him make a peep right now,” the coach said.
“They were beside themselves with the wonderful results they got, to see how everything they worked on is looking great at this point,” Coach Pete Carroll said. “His throat really is responding well, enough that the doctor couldn’t wait to get out here and talk about it.”
Sounds great, eh?
Now for a stiff dose of reality from the two surgeons who operated on Johnson. An itemized assessment of the injury and recovery - after the jump:
Twitter has been a thorn in the side of many college football coaches this season, but in one case, it has potential to truly do some good.
(Carroll asks everyone to send Stafon Johnson well-wishes via Twitter)
USC coach Pete Carroll today Tweeted that injured Trojan running back Stafon Johnson is now on Twitter, and he encouraged his 45,000+ followers to send Johnson get-well wishes. Read more…
All of us want Stafon Johnson to fully recover from his tragic weightlifting accident suffered on Monday morning. 99 percent of the media coverage of his ordeal has trumpeted that he’ll eventually make a complete recovery and be back playing football at USC soon enough.
But there is a tiny minority that isn’t so sure about Johnson’s total recovery and return to football. That minority includes Jim Wyzard, a doctor (per AOL’s Brian Grummell) who runs SBNation.com’s USC blog.
In a Tuesday post, Wyzard notes that “after talking to a few MD’s I work with here in NYC“, he doesn’t “hold out much hope” that Johnson will ever play football again. Read more…
Since this was Stafon Johnson’s last year of eligibility at USC, and we’ve now heard there’s a good chance he’ll make “full recovery”, the question is, will he be able to play for the Trojans next year?
(Johnson has exhausted eligibility, will NCAA grant him another year?)
Ben Malcolmson of USC’s official football blog has potentially good news on that front tonight, reporting that the school’s compliance office determined today that Johnson indeed has the “potential of getting an extra year of eligibility because of a medical hardship.”
Since Johnson played in at least 30 percent of the team’s games this season and then suffered a season-ending injury, he meets the official criteria to apply for an extra year of NCAA eligibility. Read more…
ESPN has the latest on Stafon Johnson:
USC Trojans tailback Stafon Johnson is awake and communicating via writing and hand signals less than a day after emergency surgery to repair throat injuries from a weightlifting accident, according to a doctor at the hospital where he is being treated.
Dr. Gudata Hinika, the trauma medical director at California Hospital Medical Center, said Johnson is giving thumbs up signs and communicating in writing to his mother and teammates after undergoing a seven-hour surgery to repair a crushed neck and larynx.
While it appears Johnson’s recovery is assured, from the additional information now coming out, it appears that was not a certaintly last evening.
Late Monday night, L.A. sports anchor Curt Sandoval reported on Stafon Johnson’s recovery from a weightlifting injury: “USC’s Stafon Johnson won’t play this year after freak accident - but IS expected to make a full recovery!”
Sandoval added on-air that the emergency surgical procedure lasted seven hours and “could’ve cost Johnson his life.”
While it was left unsaid, the implication of a “full recovery” is that Johnson will play football again.
The L.A. TIMES reports that a source close to the family said “surgeons had planned to realign Johnson’s larynx and they were hopeful that he would regain his voice.”
More background info on Johnson’s injury and condition after the jump. Read more…
Yes, this is another politics post. Agree with it? Go vote about it. Disagree with it? Go vote about it. But only after you vote in our own poll below!
There are many reasons to hate the USC Trojans. Most of them have to do with some combination of the Reggie Bush scandal and outright jealousy. But you can’t hate them for Pete Carroll, not if you have even one sensical bone in your body.
(Pete Carroll, demonstrating the enormous importance of this election. Or hugging Invisible Grimace. Whatever.)
The ever-excited coach rebuilt the Trojans into one of the three best programs in the country right now (Florida, Texas) and has done so with class, honor, and humor. And now, with this momentous election on top of us, he’s got his players thinking about politics.
So what is USC doing during their bye week? According to the LOS ANGELES TIMES, Pete Carroll hopes that it’s anything other than getting arrested, unlike the last free weekend they had, when starting cornerback Shareece Wright was arrested after a fight at a party.
But Coach Carroll knows that asking his team to do something as complex and harrowing as not gettingin trouble with a whole weekend to kill is a tall order: