It is any college football player’s dream to play in the NFL as soon as possible, but that doesn’t mean they are all equally ready to withstand the big boys’ game. It is the case of Matt Barkley who thought he was prepared to play in the NFL. But his first love, the USC, is so powerful Matt Barkley announced his is returning for his senior season.
On Thursday, Matt Barkley got everybody in the USC’s Heritage Hall cheering when he announced he still has some unfinished work here. He put off his playing in the NFL for the opportunity to lead the Trojans.
“I am staying so I can finish what I started”, he said. USC Coach Lane Kiffin was so happy with Berkley’s decision he couldn’t get over the “special day” and moment. However, he did add: “That’s not an easy decision. Not many people would do what Matt has done”. Athletic Director Pat Haden added: “This is a great day for USC, for our family, our fans and I would say for college football as well”.
Coach Lane Kiffin heard the news on Wednesday, one day before the official announcement. Kiffin received from Barkley a Christmas ornament that had a picture of the two together during this season’s game against Colorado on one side; the back had the “One More Year” message.
For the Trojans, Barkley’s decision to return for his senior season is one of the best news ever. With Barkley and T.J. McDonald back, the Trojans are poised to stand a chance winning the next year’s national title.
The 6 foot, 220 pounds quarterback had a successful career with the Trojans. He played three years with USC, and even scored a record-setting junior season. In the end, his performance got him a projected top 10 pick in the April draft.
Basically, everybody was expecting quarterback Matt Barkley to follow in the steps of Mark Sanchez, ever since his first season with the USC. However, Barkley had a trick up his sleeve, as he decided to follow the example of former USC player Matt Leinart, who six years ago announced his return to USC.
Even Mark Sanchez pulled out a similar thing two years ago, when he announced he would enter the NFL draft, although his former coach Pete Carroll said he disagreed with his decision.