But I guess you can't get everything you want.
It's a bit of a calculated risk. But it's clear Matt Barkley isn't going to be the top pick in the 2012 NFL Draft, and this decision probably vaults him to the top of draft boards in 2013 as the marquee quarterback. Barkley does lose his left tackle, but he also returns the rest of his starting offensive line, his primary top tailback in Curtis McNeal, two young and primary tight ends Xavier Grimble and Randall Telfer, and of course Marqise Lee and Robert Woods. USC will be the prohibitive Pac-12 favorites next season, particularly with Oregon visiting them.
It certainly makes victory in the Coliseum a more difficult task. Of course, except for 2010, our failure to beat USC has had less to do with our defense against Trojan quarterbacks, but more to do with our lack of offense against formidable USC defensive fronts.
We'll see if things have changed and whether Cal can put together the effort on offense they need to challenge the Trojans. It's been a long time since they have.