He came out of high school surrounded by plenty of hype. And Matt Barkley has handled it with class.
Playing quarterback for the University of Southern California is no easy feat, but Barkley continues to impress. The 20th ranked Trojans may not be as dominant as in years past, but at 7-3 they can’t be overlooked. Barkley has done his part, throwing for 2,518 yards and 25 TD’s during his sophomore year. Hard to say where the Trojans would be without him.
Barkley was the 2007 Gatorade National Player of the Year while attending Mater Dei High School in Santa Ana, California. He was also rated the first overall prospect in the Class of 2009 by ESPN. Barkely was put in the spotlight soon after arriving at USC, becoming the starting QB as a freshman. There were some rough patches last year, but Barkley showed signs that he could be successful leading the Trojans on any given Saturday.
What’s more amazing about the young gunslinger is his personality off the field. He is a devout Christian and plays guitar with a church youth group. While in high school, his parents started the Monarchs for Marines program. Hundreds of Mater Dei students, coaches and parents helped landscape and renovate youth areas on Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton. Something you don’t hear enough of concerning young athletes nowadays. The kid has a good head on his shoulders, which shows why he has a bright future both on and off the field.
The USC football program has hit a rough patch over the last few months, with the damage being done by previous coaches and players. However, they remain a talented bunch in the Pac-10 that can play with anyone. And each Saturday, their young field general goes out and continues to help the Trojans try regain their status among the nation’s elite.
You just got to have faith, and Trojan Nation is putting theirs in Barkley.
Written by C. James