…Matt Barkley stays upright. This will be the toughest test for the Trojan offensive line since Stanford, with the Sun Devils ranked second in the nation behind the Cardinal in sacks and tackles for loss. In that first loss of the season, Stanford took advantage of USC’s troubles at center without Khaled Holmes. Freshman Cyrus Hobbie struggled all night, but so did the entire unit as the Cardinal logged four sacks and consistently harassed Barkley within moments of the ball being snapped.
The offensive line that will be facing Arizona State is quite different from the one that got exposed in the Bay Area. Holmes has returned from injury and has anchored the line like the veteran he is. True freshman Max Tuerk has also stepped in effectively for Aundrey Walker at left tackle. In order for Lane Kiffin to feel confident enough to be aggressive throwing the ball, the offensive line will need to have a good showing.