While attempting to lead his Trojans back against their rival UCLA Bruins, Matt Barkley took a massive hit from Anthony Barr and was removed from the game.
Barkley was hit from his blind side and had his helmet/ throwing shoulder driven into the dirt. He was able to walk off the field after laying on the turf for several minutes.
No word yet on the injury but it looks like it had to have been something to the joint of the throwing shoulder. Barkley was starting to make some solid throws after a slow start to the game.
This seems to be the icing on the cake of this seriously lacking senior year that we are seeing from Barkley. After many considered him to be the second or third best QB prospect in last year’s draft, he returned and was expected to be the unquestioned top pick this year. USC was supposed to contend for a national championship. Barkley was supposed to be a Heisman candidate.
But that’s why they play the games.
The Trojans have had several issues, from injuries to defensive struggles to just plain bone-headed play. Barkley has not been immune to the mistakes either.
He is still considered by many to be a first round QB and a probable top-20 pick, but he definitely does not have the ‘franchise QB’ luster that everyone envisioned. He has questions about his size, arm strength, and decision making.
I think Barkley should not put himself on a pedestal. I think he should do the whole offseason grind and participate in the Senior Bowl, combine, pro day, etc. I think his best chance to save his stock is to show that he wasn’t a big part of the USC issues. I think if he comes out and shows what he can do outside of the Kiffen system, I think he can salvage that stock and potentially remain a top-1o pick. Lucky for Barkley that Geno Smith has come back down to earth and Tyler Wilson’s team is even more dysfunctional than Barkley’s. There is still room to move even though I think Barkley is the firm #3 of those senior QB’s.