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2012 Sun Bowl: Matt Barkley out, Max Wittek will start for USC

USC head coach Lane Kiffin has named redshirt freshman Max Wittek the starting quarterback for the 2012 Hyundai Sun Bowl against the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets.

Kirby Lee-US PRESSWIRE

USC head coach Lane Kiffin has announced that redshirt freshman Max Wittek will be the starting quarterback for the Trojans as they take on the Georgia Tech Yellow Jackets in the 2012 Hyundai Sun Bowl.

It will be the second-career start for Wittek, who started the Trojans final game against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish. Wittek was given high marks for his performance against the Irish after going 14-of-23 for 186 yards, one touchdown and two interceptions.

Wittek is starting over senior Matt Barkley, who is recovering from a sprained shoulder suffered six weeks ago against UCLA. Barkely tweeted on Thursday that he was not cleared by USC doctors to play and would be unable to suit up in the New Year's Eve bowl.

Wittek was one of the top quarterbacks in the Class of 2011 and he showed flashes against the Fighting Irish why he deserved those accolades. Wittek did show make some mistakes that Notre Dame capitalized on, and the Georgia Tech defense will try to take advantage of those same opportunities.

Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.