May 28, 2009

Corp's cool too

A few weeks ago, former USC quarterback Mark Sanchez made his modeling debut, posing with a tall brunette on the beach, donning some retro swimwear for the pages of GQ magazine.

While he caught some flack for the shirtless poses and the short shorts, modeling for a men's magazine with a beautiful woman is cool on one level or another.

Aaron Corp hasn't done anything like that - at least not yet - but he's got plenty of other things in common with Sanchez.

For starters, Corp is about to lead the Trojans into battle.

Just like Sanchez did last season, Corp won the No. 1 quarterback job on the heels of a strong spring. And just like Sanchez, Corp's work has just begun.

Sanchez used last summer to certify his rapport with his receivers, his running backs and his offensive line. By the time the summer ended, Sanchez was, without a doubt, the team's unquestioned leader.

Now, it's on Corp to do the same.

The process began in the spring, when Corp emerged as a leader on the offense. Multiple players on the offense spoke about Corp's presence in the locker room. He already has the respect of he teammates, and he also has their confidence.

Those things should only continue to grow as Corp works out with the offensive line before dawn and leads the offense during players-only seven-on-seven and 11-on-11 drills.

Corp's also like Sanchez in another way. Sanchez didn't change after becoming the starting quarterback. He was always a big rah-rah guy. He jumped around before practice. He played with emotion and passion.

Corp also isn't planning on changing. He's not forcing his personality on anyone. He's still the same laid-back guy who skateboards around USC's campus. He did that when he was the third guy, and now that he's the first, that won't change.

He's a steady presence, constantly calm and comfortable in his own skin. That attitude has to positively affect the players' around him.

No one is going to mistake Corp for Sanchez, but if USC's new No. 1 can win games like the Trojans' last No. 1, it'll be all the similarity people will need.

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