There are more labels being put on the year 2010 than colors in Dennis Rodman’s hair.According to the Chinese calendar, 2010 is the Year of the Tiger (apparently Mr. Woods didn’t get that message). The Christian Science Monitor says 2010 is the year of the global insurrection (whatever that means). In 1984, Hollywood made a movie titled 2010: The Year We Make Contact (Sam Cassell was born way before 2010). The United Nations declared 2010 to be the International Year of Biodiversity and Time magazine listed 2010 as the Year of the Natural Disaster (Tornado Ron Artest happened in 2004).I’m here to set the record straight: At USC, 2010 is the Year of the Freshmen.Recently, the USC athletic department has been all about getting rid of the old and ushering in the new. The school has a new athletic director, new football and baseball coaches, new compliance officers and a new attitude — makes you wonder when the men’s bathroom on the first floor of Heritage Hall is going to receive an upgrade.But the newest additions to the athletic department are the athletes, and they will be thrust into impact positions and bear more responsibility than any freshman class in recent history.The football team is an obvious example of this. This team has more question marks than just about any of former head coach Pete Carroll’s teams during the past decade, and most of those questions swirl around positions lacking experienced players. Carroll preferred to let players mature a few years under the system before allowing them to run loose on the Coliseum grass.Unfortunately, new coach Lane Kiffin has no choice. Because of the exodus of players, Kiffin has been forced to rely on the talent of incoming freshmen. Forget about just one student from the dorms getting a start or significant playing time for the Trojans down in Hawaii; there could be as many as four or five freshmen on the field, with possibly more if freshman running back Dillon Baxter hadn’t gone all Tyler Durden of Fight Club and made his own rules.To begin, there are freshman receivers Kyle Prater and Robert Woods. Other than senior wide receiver Ronald Johnson, those two have the chance to be the biggest threats for sophomore quarterback Matt Barkley. Barkley has stated he feels “really comfortable” working with both of them, and Kiffin has gone so far as to say that Woods could start next Thursday.Rounding out the impact players on offense is Baxter. For as much trouble as he’s caused off the field, he is a bigger nuisance to defenses on it — like a mosquito you keep hearing buzz by your ear but never see. His famous run during spring practice made people instantly compare him to Reggie Bush, but given that the former Heisman Trophy winner is now banned from campus, that might not be a good thing.So there are three freshmen and a sophomore who could very well find themselves on the field at the same time at some point this year, and that’s just on offense.On defense, the front line and linebacking corps are stocked with experienced and talented players, but the secondary will see more rookies than the first frat party of the year. True freshman Dion Bailey, who had 10 tackles and an interception in the Trojans’ scrimmage Saturday, has practiced in the starting safety spot while his classmate Nickell Robey is in contention to start at cornerback.But athletes with meal plans aren’t just making an impact on the gridiron. Across the street, the women’s soccer team — just three years removed from a national championship — started five freshmen in their opener last week. All eyes were on Shelby Church as she stepped between the pipes to fill the decorated shoes of departed goalkeeper Kristin Olsen.Church did her part, making two saves and allowing just one goal in her debut, but the offense sputtered to a 1-0 defeat. Still, Church’s play will be a huge factor in the Women of Troy’s success this year.Not to be outdone, the women’s volleyball team welcomed in the No. 1 recruiting class in the nation. Outside hitter Falyn Fonoimoana, labeled by some outlets as the best high school player in the country last year, could be the missing link USC needs as it begins its quest for a long-overdue national title. In all, as many as four freshmen could compete for quality minutes on the court.There you have it. This year, the freshmen class are more than just the hundreds of dining dollars left on their meal plans at the end of the semester. This year, the class of 2014 will make a visible impact on the field and could establish USC’s path to success for the next four years.For a school and athletic department that’s all about being new, it only seems appropriate for freshmen to play a prominent role.Still, it wouldn’t hurt to replace the shower curtains with doors on the stalls in the first-floor men’s room.“Spittin’ Sports” runs every Thursday. To comment on this article, visit dailytrojan.com or e-mail Kenny at firstname.lastname@example.org.