Sunday, October 14, 2012
3 Up, 3 Down: USC 24, Washington 14
By Johnny Curren
LOS ANGELES – A look at the positives and negatives from USC’s 24-14 victory over Washington on Saturday night.
1. Silas Redd: Redd was easily the Trojans’ most reliable and consistent option on offense throughout the game, rushing the ball 26 times for 155 yards and 1 touchdown. It was the tenth time in his career that the junior running back went over 100 yards on the ground – the third time as a Trojan.
2. USC defense: With the offense sputtering at times, it was up to the Trojans’ defense to maintain the team’s lead for much of the night, and it proved to be more than up to the task. Led by the standout play of Morgan Breslin and Leonard Williams along the defensive line, USC sacked Keith Price five times and forced four Washington turnovers. The Trojans also limited Huskies running back Bishop Sankey to just 54 yards on the ground.
3. Dion Bailey: Bailey was all over the field putting his unique playmaking skills on full display once again. The sophomore linebacker finished tied for the team-lead with seven tackles, while collecting an interception and forcing a fumble. His pick would set up USC’s first touchdown.
1. USC’s second-half performance: The Trojans continue to struggle to close teams out. After putting together a beautiful first half that saw them outgain the Huskies in total offensive yardage 233-87 and jump out to a 24-7 lead, they seemed to go ultra-conservative in the second half and had trouble putting anything together offensively. Outgained by 74 yards in the half, they were fortunate to hold on to the victory.
2. USC passing game: As was the trend against the Huskies, Matt Barkley started out strong, connecting on seven of his first ten pass attempts for 101 yards in the first half. The second half was another story though, as he only completed three more to finish 10-of-20 for 167 yards and one touchdown with one interception. It was particularly disappointing to see Marqise Lee, who is arguably the team’s most prolific big-play threat, haul in just 2 passes for 32 yards.
3. USC penalties: The Trojans entered the game as the second-most penalized team in the nation, averaging 10 per game. And wouldn’t you know it, on Saturday they were flagged exactly 10 times for 70 yards. The penalties continue to come at crucial moments, too, with an Aundrey Walker holding call negating a Lee touchdown reception in the third quarter.