USC quarterback Matt Barkley made plenty of Trojan fans happy — and initiated plenty of 2012 hype — when he announced he would be coming back for his senior season. As the announcement grew closer, it became clearer by the hour which way Barkley would lean.
I mean, come on, the marching band was there.
According to the now in-demand Barkley, though, the decision to stay wasn’t how he originally felt after the Trojans’ 50-0 season-ending win over UCLA.
“At first, I was pretty much positive that I was leaving right after the season because I was on such an emotional high,” Barkley said in an interview on 710 ESPN’s “Mason and Ireland” show Friday. “I figured I was going.
“But after looking over everything — and we gathered every fact we could to help make the decision — I ultimately knew in my heart that I was coming back to USC.”
Barkley added that he was never discouraged from going to the NFL — “The money will be there,” he said — but the experience of coming back for one more year of college was enough to change his mind.
Not to mention the chance to finally pursue a Pac-12 and national title, something he hasn’t been able to do the past two seasons.
“I know in my heart that I have not yet finished my journey as a Trojan football player,” Barkley said Thursday at the announcement. “Our USC football team has been through some tough times and we have persevered. But the 2012 team has some serious unfinished business to attend to, and I intend to play a part of it.”
And what prerogative is it of ours to say otherwise?