When the dust settles and the plane lands in Utah they can hold their heads high. Their coach knew that to tie that game up which he could do was not going to hold up. The USC Trojans behind Ronald Jones punishing running style and raw twitch speed would close this game out. The Utah Utes went for two when they could have settled for overtime. I applaud the team. The coach, Kyle Whittingham, knew this was going to be hero or goat. Too many this was shock. Why would Whittingham not trust his team to take this to overtime and end the 101 year streak of losses in Los Angeles?
Coach Whittigham had seen enough of the 2016 version of Sam Darnold in the second half. But he fears #25 Ronald Jones even more. He made the right decision. The play called would have worked had his quarterback looked up at that last minute as he turned up field to score only to find the Trojans Defense ready for the roll out and challenge. They stuffed the Utes right in their tracks. Victory to the USC Trojans on a night where they tried to beat themselves throughout the first half.
To come back like the Trojans did last night is a sign that this team can will itself to right the ship. Think about it, we are talking about a 6-1 team. The top team in the South Division and in control of their path to the Rose Bowl and maybe the playoffs should the polls continue to work in their favor. Time will tell. The Trojans cannot let up now. They had a game with mistakes that must be corrected. Timing and fumbling has to stop. They corrected the interception trend well. But the ball handling with Sam has to be corrected. Get the RB gloves out on Sam and lets toughen up his grip!
They say you take the good with the bad with a gunslinger. Sam knows he has a defensive QB in Cam Smith and he knows that Cam finds a way to correct mistakes by the offense. Knowing this the mistakes and gambles are difficult to watch but do payoff many times over when the Risk is a Reward for the gamble. Exciting and painful at times there are far more good than bad endings. Credit Clancy Pendergast for turning on a big valve in the second half after the Utes ran deep and often on the Trojans in the first half. They shut them down for the entire second half less one drive. It was quite the display.
Notre Dame is next up and a chance to go 7-1 is a real strong opportunity against an improving Notre Dame.