USC QB Slovis ruled out for Sat.; Fink to start

ByKyle Bonagura ESPN logo
Friday, September 27, 2019

USC Trojans quarterback Kedon Slovis was ruled out of Saturday's game at No. 17Washingtonand junior Matt Fink will make his first career start, coach Clay Helton said Thursday.

Slovis, a true freshman who began the year as the backup to returning starter JT Daniels, left early in Friday's win against Utah and did not practice this week while in the concussion protocol.

Fink, who entered the transfer portal in the spring before opting to remain at USC, completed 21 of 30 passes for 351 yards with three touchdowns and an interception in relief of Slovis. Prior to that he had attempted just 18 career passes over the past two seasons.

Walk-on Brandon Perdue, who was converted to safety in the spring, will serve as the backup. Over two seasons in junior college -- first at Pierce College in California; then New Mexico Military Institute -- Perdue completed 37 of 89 passes for 376 yards with four touchdown passes. He was also a backup quarterback at Oaks Christian High in Southern California.

Daniels suffered a season-ending knee injury in the Trojans' season-opening win against Fresno State, and the team's only other scholarship quarterback, Jack Sears, left the team before the season began after finishing fourth in the quarterback competition.

Two starters in the secondary, safety Talanoa Hufanga, the team's leading tackler, and cornerback Olaijah Griffin will also miss the game due to injury, Helton said. Hufanga was in the concussion protocol this week and is coming back from a sprained shoulder, and Griffin is dealing with a back injury.

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