Well we won. Let me repeat that, USC Won game one versus Fresno State. Was it pretty? No. Should have blown them out and stayed the course with JT and the first two series. Something happened between the press box and the sidelines oh and the locker room at halftime. Something probably explainable took place but it feels like last years offense from the 2nd quarter on. Defense looked ok and much improved. One serious flaw was the only group that appeared to not sit in on Clay’s proclaimed Mastery Courseware was Clay and John Baxter. How the hell do you look in the mirror after you were so blatantly unaware of two #7’s in the game at the same time on the kick return unit on the first play of the new season? Really? This one is on Clay Helton. No excuses. No explanation asked for either. I could go deeper but you get the point. Preach all you want to the players and the fans about this Mental Focus but when you yourself on the very first kickoff of the new season fail well there you go.
We lost J.T. Daniels in game one and wish him a speedy recovery. He showed everyone what having a full season meant to the position. He was poised. He was laser focused on the game plan and it showed. Until the injury he was pacing for a possible 400 yard game. Injuries are a sad part of football and what happened to J.T. was difficult to watch. Kedon Slovis who rose the rank of Senior Prom night to back up QB to now full time starter in a short few months. Quite the story. Watching his eyes a calm appearance this kid is going to be very interesting as he develops his confidence and knowledge of the defensive schemes he will be facing. Can’t just walk in and know everything. It takes time. Nerves of steel and ice in his veins he took over a game situation that was shifting momentum back to Fresno State. He didn’t seem particularly alarmed by anything. Just doing his job and executing as best he could. Had to be a tough halftime locker room moment for Kedon as he probably couldn’t wait to get in from the 50,000 plus in the newly renovated Coliseum. Gorgous looking I will say that. Not getting in to the functional issues the grand old Coliseum stood proud on Saturday night as it will against Stanford.
Back to Stanford now. The Cardinal had their normal boring win against Northwestern. Both teams played not to lose and the TV Crew was in pain. For those that watched, I apologize on behalf of the experience. Ha! Stanford wins. They at times win ugly but their formula is a good one and they stick to it. Powerful trench warfare regardless. They did lose Costello to injury as we lost J.T. Daniels and not sure he is returning this Saturday. Time will tell. So we will have two freshmen QB-1’s for Saturday night and Kedon will have a full week in command and control of the offense prior to kickoff. Big difference that preparing just in case as we the case last week. I see something very special in Kedon. I don’t think he is going to disappoint. Graham Harrell will need to keep his focus on the game plan and not the shiny lights of those amazing and beautiful long balls he throws with great touch and accuracy. This should be fun.
USC’s defense played well with the exception of CB cover long and not putting a spy on Rena it was a good nights effort. I can’t blame the kids on the Spy missing in action. That’s Clancy’s call and he chose to let it all happen without putting someone on the crafty little QB from Fresno State. He’s a good one. Fun to watch but it was painful watching us tackling air on his escapes. Not easy on the Linemen and they were clearly on their own all night. This week should be interesting and I sense advantage USC Defense. The Cardinals offense without Costello is a bit unpredictable (no film available for either coach). But I’m sticking to my guns and going with the Trojans in this one. Need to update my Game Day predictions fast.
Fight On! Beat the Cardinal