LOS ANGELES - While coach Pete Carroll declined to identify Southern California's starting quarterback before the 13th-ranked Trojans left for Saturday's game at Notre Dame, third-year sophomore Mark Sanchez appears on track to get the call.
John David Booty sat out USC's 20-13 victory over Arizona last weekend because of a broken middle finger on his throwing hand. Sanchez filled in, and completed 19 of 31 passes for 130 yards and one touchdown with two interceptions in his first career start.
"Those guys are both ready to play," Carroll said Thursday after Sanchez and Booty shared time during 11-on-11 drills in practice, although Booty simply handed the ball off when it was his turn.
Wearing a glove, Booty played catch earlier in the day, throwing the ball 20-to-25 yards with ease.
Digital Access for only $0.99
For the most comprehensive local coverage, subscribe today.
"We decided to rest John today," Carroll said. "We're going to see how he responds to rest and all that. Everything we've had him do, he's done fine. The more rest we give him, the better."
Carroll didn't rule out the possibility of Booty getting the start, but Sanchez has gotten almost all the work with the first unit this week.
Neither quarterback spoke with reporters Thursday. Booty said a day earlier he believed he would be ready to play, and Sanchez said he was confident he would play well if called upon to start at Notre Dame.