After a summer of stiff competition, Brad Otton was named USC's starting quarterback for Saturday's season opener against San Jose State at the Coliseum.
"This is what I expected," Otton said after Thursday's announcement by Coach John Robinson.
Otton, a 6-foot-6 junior from Tumwater, Wash., who backed up starter Brad Johnson last season, will share duties with Kyle Wachholtz, a 6-5 senior from Corona.
Both quarterbacks said starting Saturday's game is meaningless because coaches plan to platoon them. Otton will play the first quarter, Wachholtz the second. Robinson said his staff will then decide what to do in the second half.
"We had to pick one [to start]," Robinson said, adding that the same arrangement will be used in next week's game against Houston.
The seventh-ranked Trojans have the luxury of playing two nonconference games before opening the Pacific 10 Conference season against Arizona on Sept. 23.
San Jose State's Carl Dean, who completed eight of 12 passes for 105 yards after relieving Alli Abrew against Stanford last weekend, will start against USC.
Dean, a redshirt junior who sat out last season after transferring from Bakersfield College, also had a touchdown and threw an interception last Saturday.
He replaced Abrew in the second quarter with the Spartans trailing, 21-3.