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October 24, 2005
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With his performance against Washington, the sophomore wide receiver is positioning himself to own USC's record book.
"I think it just shows how great we can be when were really focused," Jarrett said after his three touchdown catches in Saturday's 51-24 win over Washington, the Trojans 29th consecutive victory. "We came to work, and that's what we did."
With five games remaining this season, Jarrett has the Trojans' single-season touchdown mark in sight, and the career total as well.
His three TDs against the Huskies gave the 6-foot-5 Jarrett 12 for the season, and 25 overall - placing him second on USC's all-time list. He trails only his immediate predecessor, Mike Williams, who had 30 TD catches in just two seasons, including a record 16 in 2003.
Jarrett's quarterback, Matt Leinart, also became the Pac-10 Conference all-time leader in touchdown passes on Saturday with 87, surpassing Arizona State's Andrew Walter, who had 85.
"I'm happy for whoever gets in the end zone," Jarrett said. "We have a lot of talented players, but whoever is able to make that play, give us that extra push or extra lean, it's great and we all celebrate together."
Now Jarrett and the Trojans get a chance to go home and display an offense that seems to be finding its rhythm again. USC plays four of its final five games at home, and its only road trip is just up the state to the Bay Area to face California on Nov. 12.
"I'm just thrilled to head back home now and get a chance to finish up our season strong," coach Pete Carroll said. "We believe so much in what we are doing, we just went back to the principles."
Jarrett eclipsed the 100-catch mark against the Huskies with his seven catches for 95 yards. He now has 101 in his career, an accomplishment reached by only 15 other Trojans.
His first touchdown gave USC the lead for good, a 24-yard pass from Leinart on the first play after Washington scored to take a 10-7 lead. Six minutes later, Jarrett caught a 7-yard TD pass from Leinart that capped a 27-point scoring blitz from the Trojans.
But Jarrett's best came in the second half.
On first-and-goal at the Washington 7 late in the third quarter, Leinart floated a pass to the back corner of the end zone. Jarrett reached out with his right hand, corralled and controlled the ball, and planted his right foot inbounds simultaneously. USC rushed on the field to kick the extra point, but television replays showed the catch would have stood if it had been reviewed.
"Matt threw the ball where it needed to be," Jarrett said. "You got to know where you're at on the field, be aware of everything, and that's what I did."
Washington's Roy Lewis was given the task of trying to contain Jarrett, and was constantly searching for No. 8.
"You have to be aware of his presence," Lewis said.
Jarrett can occasionally get lost with all the firepower on the Trojans' offense, shuffled behind Leinart, Reggie Bush and LenDale White. He became a hero to USC fans after his fourth-quarter catch against Notre Dame setup Leinart's game-winning TD run with 3 seconds left.
It's hard not to recognize Jarrett's numbers. He's caught touchdowns in 13 of his 20 games, and has six games of at least 100 yards receiving. The three TD catches tied a school record he already held a share of - Jarrett had three TDs earlier this season against Hawaii.
Jarrett's presence is just another headache for defenses to try and stop, and he sees the opposition respecting the Trojans talent every time out.
"We have so many talented players on the team, from Reggie to Matt, LenDale to Dominique (Byrd), Steve (Smith), the list goes on and on," Jarrett said. "We have a tremendous group of players and I'm just thankful to play with these guys."For more coverage of the USC Trojans, check out USCFootball.com.