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UW fiddles around; Troy on fire

Memorial Coliseum, Los Angeles. Using a paralyzing ground attack, a trick play and two long touchdown runs, the 18th-ranked USC Trojans hammered the Washington Huskies, 40-17, in front of 64,756 spectators.


Photo courtesy of Lynn Borland

In his article this morning, Bob Condotta of The Seattle Times wrote, "Washington defeated USC on last-second field goals in 2009 and 2010 and was hoping the third time would also be a charm."

Condotta might have mentioned that former Washington QB Jake Locker accounted for 420 yards of offense in the 2010 game.

And in his 2009 loss, former USC coach Pete Carroll said, "The difference was Jake...that's a great player."

This is not meant to be a criticism of Locker's heir apparent, Keith Price, who played reasonably well, completing 12 of 16 passes for 125 yards, with a passing efficiency rating of 140.62. He left the game in the second half due to a recurring knee injury, but is expected to play against Oregon State on Saturday.

After Nick Montana threw the touchdown pass, the look of elation on his parents' faces made watching the broadcast to the bitter end palpable.

A master of the obvious, head coach Steve Sarkisian was quoted as saying, "I think there were some issues up front. The fundamentals of the game (blocking and tackling) are what we need to get back to so that we can match our execution with our want-to."

For the Huskies it was an afternoon of too-muchness: too many sacks allowed, too many yards given up, too many penalties committed, too many points surrendered and too many three-and-outs posted.

Giving up 7 sacks, Washington (6-4, 4-3 Pac-12) now ranks 102nd in the FBS in sacks allowed  -- that's 13 sacks in the last two games.

UW ranks 93rd in total defense (104th in pass defense) and 102nd in scoring defense.

The men of Troy accumulated 426 yards of total offense, 252 yards via the ground and 174 through the air, while limiting the Dawgs to 46 yards rushing and 198 yards passing.

RB Chris Polk gained 36 yards on 9 carries. Between them, the Huskies' exciting true-freshmen duo, Austin Seferian-Jenkins and Kasen Williams, caught 9 passes for 92 yards.

Neither team committed a turnover.

A trick play sealed the Huskies' fate. Leading 7-3 midway through the second quarter, USC lined up to punt from its 45. Faking a punt, Kyle Negrete ran for 35 yards, setting up another USC touchdown  -- in this case, opening the flood gates.

With a 23-7 lead, Marqise Lee of the Trojans returned the opening kickoff in the second half for an 88-yard touchdown run and an insurmountable 30-7 lead, insurmountable considering the pathetic way the Dawgs were playing.

With 12:45 to go in the third quarter, Curtis McNeal made it 37-10 on an 79-yard touchdown run.

So far this season, Washington hasn't been able to stop the run against ranked teams (four of them), let alone win the game, being woefully outrushed by Nebraska, Stanford, Oregon and Troy. The solution?

For starters, the Huskies will begin to compete with the big boys, as in the top 25, when defensive coordinator Nick Holt begins to think "SEC front four" -- or, say, a Haloti Ngata -- when out on the recruiting trail and settles for nothing less. See Table 1 below.

For Price's passing efficiency rating see Table 2.

Table 1. In its six victories, Washington has held its six opponents to an average of 51.5 yards per game on the ground, which would rank first in the FBS if those six games were all Washington had played. In its four losses, UW has allowed 304.75 rushing yards per game. In its ten games, UW ranks 61st in the FBS in rushing defense (7th in the Pac-12), yielding 152.8 yards per game. This table seems to say stop the run and win the game.

School

W/L

Rush

UW Rush

Eastern Washington

W

31 yards

148 yards

Hawaii

W

55

151

Nebraska

 L

309

146

California

W

108

117

Utah

W

17

185

Colorado

W

62

295

Stanford

L

446

172

Arizona

W

36

179

Oregon

L

212

82

USC

L

252

46

Table 2. Keith Price's cumulative passing efficiency.

Team C A Y T I PE C A Y T I PE
EWU 17 25 102 3 0 149.87 17 25 102 3 0 149.87
Hawai'i 18 25 315 4 1 222.64 35 50 417 7 1 182.26
Nebraska 21 37 274 4 2 143.83 56 87 691 11 3 165.91
California 19 25 292 3 0 213.71 75 112 983 14 3 176.58
Utah 22 30 226 3 1 162.95 97 142 1209 17 4 173.70
Colorado 21 28 257 4 0 199.24 118 170 1466 21 4 177.91
Stanford 23 36 247 1 1 125.13 141 206 1713 22 5 168.69
Arizona 16 30 277 1 3 121.89 157 236 1990 23 8 162.74
Oregon 24 35 143 2 2 110.32 181 271 2133 25 10 155.97
USC 12 16 125 0 0 140.62 193 287 2258 25 10 155.11

Team 1 2 3 4 Total
Washington 0 3 7 7 17
USC 7 16 14 3 40


Time Team How Player (s) UW USC
1st qtr          
  USC TD Matt Barkley 1 yd run (Andre Heidari kick) 0 7
2nd qtr          
5:24 UW FG Erik Folk 46 yd FG 3 7
6:58 USC TD Marc Tyler 1 yd run (Andre Heidari kick) 3 14
5:53 USC SF Devon Kennard safety 3 16
2:44 USC Marqise Lee 9 yd pass from Matt Barkley (Andre Heidari kick) 3 23
3rd qtr
14:45 USC TD Marqise Lee 88 yd kick return (Andre Heidari kick 3 30
13:36 UW TD Chris Polk 1 yd run (Erik Folk kick) 10 30
12:45 USC TD Curtis McNeal 79 yd run (Andre Heidari kick) 10 37
4th qtr
14:57 USC TD Andre Heidari 30 yd FG 10 40
0:13 UW TD Kasen Williams 20 yd pass from Nick Montana (Erik Folk kick) 17 40

 

Statistics UW USC
Total First Downs 13 21
  Rushing 4 10
  Passing 8 7
  Penalty 1 4
Total Net Yards 244 426
Net Yards Passing 198 174
Net Yards Rushing 46 252
Completions-att-int 21-31-0 18-28-0
Punts, yards, average 8-418; 52.2 5-212; 42.4
Sacks by (number, yards) 1-8 7-35
Kickoff Returns: number, yds, tds 7-176-0 2-127-1
Punt returns: number, yds, tds 2-10-0 3-32-0
Kickoff Yards 4-248 7-470
Net Yards per kickoff 25.2 42.0
Average yards per kickoff 62.0 67.1
Touchbacks (kickoffs) 1 0
Third-down conversions 2 of 13 7 of 15
Interception returns: no., yds, tds 0-0-0 0-0-0
Penalties, no., Yards 12-91 11-78
Fumbles; number/lost 1-0 0-0
Time of Possession  25:45 34:15

Passing cmp att yds tds int
Matt Barkley; 128.27 18 28 174 1 0
           
Washington          
Keith Price; 140.62 12 16 125 0 0
Nick Montana; 122.88 9 15 73 1 0
           
USC Rushing No. Net TD Lg Avg.
Curtis McNeal 18 148 1 79 8.2
Marc Tyler 7 50 1 24 7.1
Kyle Negrete 1 35 0 35 45.0
Amir Carlisle 7 14 0 9 2.0
Robert Woods 1 4 0 5 4.0
D. J. Morgan 2 4 0 3 2.0
Matt Barkley 4 -3 1 3 -0.8
           
Washington Rushing No. yds tds long avg.
Chris Polk 9 36 1 12 4.0
Jessie Callier 2 12 0 11 6.0
Devin Aguilar 1 -2 0 0 -2.0
Keith Price 5 -16 0 5 -3.2
Bishop Sankey 4 22 0 17 5.5
Kevin Smith 1 6 0 6 6.0
Nick Montana 5 -12 0 0 -6.0
           
Trojans Pass Receiving No. yds tds long
Marqise Lee 9 74 1 15  
Randall Telfer 4 43 0 21  
Robert Woods 2 5 0 5  
Brice Butler 1 36 0 36  
Marc Tyler 1 15 0 15  
Amir Carlisle 1 1 0 1  
           
Washington Pass Rec. No. yds tds long
Bishop Sankey 4 13 0 6  
Jesse Callier 1 9 0 9  
Kasen Williams 5 44 1 20  
Chris Polk 1 0 0 0  
Austin Seferian-Jenkins 4 48 0 22  
Jermaine Kearse 2 10 0 6  
Devin Aguilar 1 5 0 5  
Mike Hartvigson 2 16 0 10  
Kevin Smith 1 53 0 53  
           
Punting        
USC No. yds avg long IN20
Kyle Negete  5 212 42.4 53 0
           
Washington          
   
Kiel Rasp 8 418 52.2 62 1
           
Attendance: 64,756          

Richard Linde, aka Malamute can be reached at malamute@4malamute.com

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