Jack Sears stood in the tunnel outside the Coliseum locker room Saturday afternoon when he was approached by an admirer.

Arizona State coach Herm Edwards arrived to shake hands with Sears before the USC quarterback was to speak with a group of reporters.

“You played your tail off,” Edwards said during a brief embrace. “You’re a good football player.”

In his college debut, Sears left an impression among many observers, including one from the opposing team’s sideline.

While the Trojans were handed a 38-35 loss by Arizona State, Sears fared well, completing 20 of 28 passes for 235 yards and two touchdowns, as he started behind center in place JT Daniels, who was sidelined because of a concussion.

The inspiring performance, though, will not prompt any quarterback controversy, nor alter USC’s pecking order.

Daniels will remain the starting quarterback, possibly as soon as next Saturday’s game at Oregon State, if he clears concussion protocol, Coach Clay Helton said during his Sunday teleconference.