October 7, 2007

Notes on a scorecard: USC falls to Stanford

John David Booty said he thought he injured his right middle finger sometime in the first quarter, after banging it on a helmet. X-Rays showed a cracked finger tip.

In that quarter he completed only 3-of-8 passes but was victimized by three drops. During the Trojans' stunning 24-23 loss to Stanford, Booty completed 60 percent of his throws for 364 yards and two touchdowns. But the senior also tossed four interceptions, including one for a third-quarter Stanford touchdown.

Some of Booty's passes simply were off the mark, just like last week, when he struggled at Washington. However, he remained physically capable of making the tough throws:

Booty hit Ronald Johnson on a fourth-quarter deep ball for a 47-yard touchdown; he connected with Fred Davis in the third to set off a 63-yard catch-and-run score; and he rifled a ball into Patrick Turner's hands, in field-goal range, on USC's final drive. Turner dropped the pass.

"It doesn't feel good, but it was definitely something I could play with," Booty said of the finger. "If I felt I was seriously hurting the team or could not do anything to my abilities, then of course I'm not going to do that. … I felt like I could still play with it, so that's what I did."

Booty made no excuses for his performance, declining to even mention the injury to the media.

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