Coaches Corner: Coach Rocky Seto
Coach Seto Talks About the Secondary
Time flies when you’re having fun. It hardly seems possible, but it seems just a couple years ago when Rocky Seto was on the sidelines at USC as a football player. Seto is an amiable person, willing to share his thoughts and feelings about the USC program. Coming up as a walk-on for the football program, he earned a scholarship in his senior season. Seto is also one of the senior members of the coaching staff.
Rocky Seto is in his tenth year on the USC staff, including his sixth as a full-time assistant. He took over handling of the secondary in 2006 after being in charge of the linebackers in 2004 and 2005 and the safeties in 2003. SCPlaybook caught up with Coach Seto to discuss his tenure with the Trojans and the secondary for 2008.
You’ve been here now, what, eight years, nine years?
“This is going to be my 12th year. I played two years and this is my tenth year coaching. It goes by fast.”
So who did you come in under, Coach Robinson?
“I walked-on under Coach Robinson, then Coach Hackett came in and awarded me a scholarship my senior season, then he allowed me to volunteer the next season. Then Coach Carroll came in. I’ll tell you, God’s been great, God has put these great coaches here and given me great opportunities.”
“It’s been unbelievable, with each move, each coach has been able to give me more opportunity.”
What are your thoughts about being here for your twelfth year, working with the secondary and being on staff?
“I love it, I love it. Under Coach Carroll I’ve been blessed with the opportunity to work with the linebackers and now I’m working with the secondary again, and it’s been awesome. Awesome.”
“Great group of kids, great group of kids, they work hard, they’re really diligent about their preparation. Some of them really want to be great. This group is a really special group.”
Well, let’s talk about some of them, let’s start with Josh Pinkard. He’ll be back in the Fall? What position do you see him playing?
“He’ll be back. Coach (Carroll) and I talked about it, we’re leaning toward cornerback. He could play safety as well, but we’ll have him playing corner, competing at the corner spot.”
“We’re using him very sparingly, the time period (for recovery) doesn’t allow us to go, he not quite ready. As you can see, he’s starting to move around out there, he’s beginning to move around and we expect a full recovery for him in Fall Camp.”
Let’s talk about Kevin Ellison.
“Tremendous. He’s a 'team captain' type player, he’s going to be a three-year starter, one of the best players in the country. One of the best defensive backs in the country, no doubt about that. He prepares extremely hard and has a great sense, he really wants to be great. How he prepares, how hard he works and how focused he is about how to maximize his talents. Tremendous player.”
How about Taylor Mays?
“Taylor Mays is another great player, he’s physically gifted. He’s big and fast, the fastest player on our team and also prepares well. Really physical, just like Kevin is, it’s awesome having both guys back there, you know?”
Taylor Mays, or rather Anthony McCoy got his bell rung at the scrimmage…
“(Laughter…) I think both those guys got rung. What a great hit that was, I was pretty proud of Anthony to hang on to the ball, it was awesome for Anthony to hang on to the ball.”
Talk about Kevin Thomas coming back.
“Kevin Thomas is an exciting player we’re happy to have him back. He’s got great physical ability great fluid movement and we’re excited, he’s going to make our defensive back group an awesome group. He’s playing corner for us.”
“Shareece has had a tremendous Spring. I think he’s elevated himself, I expect him to be one of the premier corners around. He’s physical, technically sound and highly competitive. He’ll be a junior this year.”
How about the development of Will Harris?
“Will Harris is coming around, I think he’s got great potential to be a terrific player for us. He’s been injured a lot, so we have to work him out as much as possible.
“Cary Harris is another guy, a corner, Cary’s really tough and physical. He started for us for two years. He’s a highly competitive kid. He’s a really exciting player.”
What can you say about the progress of Marshall Jones?
“He’s coming along pretty good. He started off a little slow, but he had a good day of practice today. We’re pretty excited about what he could get done. He had some nice plays today, he’s coming along.”
Kris Richard, what’s it like having him on staff now?
“Ahh, yeah, it’s been great having him around, he and I played together, we were teammates and he became a player early on. He’s going to be great, the experience he has and the energy he has, the care he has for the kids. He’s going to be a great addition to our staff. ”
Okay, last thing, who do we have coming in this Fall?
“T.J. Bryant, a corner from Tallahassee (FL), one of the top corners in the country, he should be an exciting player. Good bump-and-run, man-to-man player at corner.”
“Brian Baucham, running back-corner back from West Torrance (CA), he should be a really fast kid. He’ll play corner for us.”
“Finally Drew McAllister, a safety from Monte Vista High, Danville (CA).”