LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Whenever Matt Barkley thought about his final run down the Coliseum tunnel, the Southern California quarterback never imagined doing it with no helmet, no pads -- and his throwing arm in a sling.
Instead of facing Notre Dame for a shot at a national championship, the Trojans' star quarterback is sidelined with a sprained shoulder. Instead of playing for the nation's No. 1 team, Barkley's unranked teammates are playing against it.
If this is his storybook ending, Barkley would like to fire the author.
Yet a month of disappointment and discouragement culminating in an injured shoulder still isn't enough to shake Barkley's faith in his decision to return for one more season in the only uniform he ever dreamed of wearing.
"I took a chance," Barkley said Tuesday while a black sling supported his arm. "I don't think enough guys really go for it enough these days, and I did."
Barkley will watch the Trojans' regular-season finale Saturday from the sideline after get...