Bruins, Trojans to Battle For Pac-12 South Title
November 26, 2015
By Myke Williams
Here we go again. The big game on Saturday has turned into a huge game for the UCLA and USC football teams. The winner will grab first place out of the jaws of an up and down season and meet Stanford in the Pac-12 championship game next month in Santa Clara.
Kickoff for this cross-town rivalry game is set for 12:30 p.m. and the game will be televised by Channel 7. USC will be looking to stop UCLA’s three game winning streak and the Trojans’ senior quarterback Cody Kessler hopes to pull rank on UCLA’s freshman signal caller Josh Rosen.
The battle for first place in the Pac-12 South division will answer a lot of questions about both teams. Which team can survive the injury bug that has hurt both teams and continues to be a major problem? Can the Trojans stop the best freshman quarterback in the nation? Can both teams stop the other teams’ three tailback system?
These are just a few of the many questions that we be answered on Saturday at the Coliseum.
If the 8-3 Bruins, who are 5-3 in the South division expect to win they will need an outstanding performance by their freshman quarterback Rosen. Although they have a very good running back in Paul Perkins, Rosen hopes to duplicate the performance by Oregon’s Vernon Adams Jr. last week against the Trojans. Adams, who is from Pasadena, threw for over 400 yards against USC in their 48-28 victory in Eugene.
Rosen throws to a group of big wide receivers, led by 6-1, 212 pound Jordan Payton and 6-2, 210 pound Thomas Duarte. They don’t have great speed but they get open and they rarely drop passes.
On defense the Bruins will rely on a team that does not any superstars but plays well together. They are led by lineman Kenny Clark and linebacker Deon Hollins.
If the 7-4 and 5-3 Trojans expect to win their defense will need to come ready to play and stop Rosen. They need to put pressure on Rosen and make sure the Bruin receivers don’t get wide open. If they can accomplish that they have an opportunity to win the game.
The USC defense is led by linemen, Antwaun Woods and Delvon Simmons, linebacker Su’a Cravens and defensive backs, Adoree’ Jackson and Kevon Seymour.
On offense the Trojans will rely on Kessler to get the ball to receivers JuJu Smith-Schuster, Steven Mitchell, Darreus Rogers and Jackson. The offensive line, led by 6-9, 360 pound Zack Banner will need to give Kessler time to pass.
The Trojans running game, led by Tre Madden, Justin Davis and freshman Ronald Jones II may be the key to the Trojans winning the game. Their combination of power and speed may help the USC win this important game.
If there is one thing USC has that UCLA does not is Jackson. As a kick and punt returner he can score from anywhere on the field.