AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWalnut’s Malik Khouzam voted Southern California Boys Athlete of the Week Carroll’s only consolation was that USC plays on FieldTurf against Washington on Saturday. “This fits that we’re out here,’ he said. “In the long run it’s better, but I would have preferred to have taken (the team) to the grass.’ Freshman linebacker Brian Cushing is finally expected to return from a dislocated shoulder, although he tweaked it during drills Wednesday. “I’m real excited to play football. It’s been a disappointment to me and I’ve been a disappointment to others,’ Cushing said. After making the trip to Notre Dame, where he expected to commit before Tyrone Willingham was fired, Cushing said the Irish are a different program now. LOS ANGELES — USC coach Pete Carroll might make more than $2 million per season, but even he couldn’t get the Trojans on to their practice field Wednesday as ground crews struggled to fix new turf problems. A supervisor said the field still might not be ready today. But Carroll vowed to return the Trojans to Howard Jones Field today no matter what condition it’s in. USC practiced on Cromwell Field the past three days. Cromwell Field has FieldTurf instead of grass and doesn’t even have a 100-yard field. “We’ll force our way out there (to Howard Jones Field),’ Carroll said. Three different-sized bulldozers unsuccessfully tried to level the new sod and a huge amount of sand was poured on the field to soak up water from the recent rains. But Wednesday night, the field was still uneven. Carroll ordered equipment moved to Howard Jones Field anyway. “That might be the Notre Dame of old,’ Cushing said. Would he have gone to Notre Dame if he were a high-school senior this year? “I might have,’ Cushing said. Willingham is now the coach at Washington and Cushing hopes to see Husky linebackers coach Bob Simmons, who recruited him at Notre Dame. “Coach Simmons was over at my house all the time,’ he said. “I still talk to him once in awhile.’ Freshman linebacker Rey Maualuga along with cornerbacks Josh Pinkard and Will Harris appear to be the favorites to be placed on the punt team as gunners, the players that line up wide and race down the field when the ball is snapped. Harris is also an addition to the kickoff team, replacing the injured Desmond Reed. “He looks like he’s flying around here,’ Carroll said of Harris. An estimated 30 million watched USC defeat Notre Dame, making it the most-watched college football game in nine years. A Florida-Florida State game on ABC in 1996 attracted 32 million viewers. This was the highest-rated Notre Dame game since 1996 and fourth- highest since NBC started televising Irish games 15 years ago. Defensive back William Buchanon (hip flexor) will miss the game. Tight end Dale Thompson continues to wear a cast on his broken hand but is cleared to play. Defensive lineman Lawrence Miles underwent X-rays on his sore shoulder but is expected to be OK. Carroll’s done a lot of TV interviews this week following the highly publicized victory over the Irish. “I’m starting to get sick of hearing myself talk,’ he said. Scott Wolf can be reached at (818) 713-3607. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!