USC vs. Stanford: Five Things We Learned

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Nov 16, 2013; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Southern California Trojans coach Ed Orgeron reacts during the game against the Stanford Cardinal at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. USC defeated Stanford 20-17. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

1) Orgeron can win the big one

Coming into the prime time game against Stanford, there was a legitimate question about Ed Orgeron. He had successfully emulated Pete Carroll in practice, in sideline demeanor and in tone on and off the field, but could he take it to the next level. Could he win the big one like Carroll used to do?

The answer, we learned, is yes.

When it comes down to it, the Trojans played with more heart than the Cardinal. You have to attribute that to Coach O.

You also have to give Orgeron credit for his “Big Balls Pete” moment — going for it on fourth down and two with the game on the line. Those are the kinds of decisions great coaches have to make and those are the kinds of decisions players will reward a great coach for making.

What that means for Colorado: Now there’s a different question making the rounds. Is Orgeron the right man to lead the Trojans long-term?

We’ll have to wait and see, but a big win over Colorado would set up UCLA as the game to give us an answer.

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Tags: Andre Heidari Cody Kessler Ed Orgeron USC Football USC Trojans

  • Mike Hugill

    When a writer has grasp, she demonstrates that she understands and does convey what is going on, OBJECTIVELY! Keep them coming, Alicia. This 75 journalism grad from the Pac 8 days is behind you!!

  • Ben Factor

    The lesson of football outsiders for the Colorado game.

    USC’s opponent-adjusted #3 ranked (FEI) or #5 ranked (S&P+) defense should easily handle Colorado’s #85 or #84 ranked offense.

    USC’s opponent-adjusted #21 or #66 offense should be pretty OK against Colorado’s #95 or #94 defense. Colorado is a little worse against the run than against the pass.

    One would expect a big day from Allen, lots of touches for Isaac, and some chances for Madden to regain his timing and feel for the game.

    Your hero Kessler probably won’t get too rattled in this one and will be able to make those plays he botched against Stanford in the second half.

    But can they play in the cold? Heck, the freezing Big 10 is all about the rushing game. It makes you warmer, right?

    Can they give the 75% that they need to? Do it for Coach O! USC will probably pull an Alabama vs. Miss. State and play without passion. And that’s probably for the best. Next week is for all the important marbles, and they renew rivalries against guys they’ve battled since Pop Warner.