SCliff Notes: Trojans Need Identity and More USC Football News


Can’t get enough USC football? We’ve got your morning dose of all the best content from around the web concerning the men of Troy.

1st & 10:

Lack of identity… During his Sunday conference call, Steve Sarkisian told reporters that his team is still finding their identity.

It’s week eight. We’re officially halfway through the season. USC better find their identity soon.

It was around this time last year that Ed Orgeron’s Trojans figured out how to win games with strong defense and an even stronger rushing attack. That’s how Steve Sarkisian’s USC produced a victory against Arizona — a healthy dose of Buck Allen and a successfully deployed “bend-but-don’t-break” defense.

Unfortunately, the Trojans are as much defined by shaky fourth quarters and blown leads this season as they are Allen’s brilliance. And even Allen has been bottled up in key situations.

USC sits on a knife’s edge. Without a firm identity, that edge will only get sharper. There’s a corner to be turned somewhere, it’s just hard to tell if that corner leads to glory or mid-table mediocrity.

In Other News…

  • Even though the Trojans came away with much-needed win over the Wildcats, USC left Tuscon with a depth chart featuring some major injury concerns. With lowly Colorado up next, we wonder if it might be best for injured players like Kevon Seymour, Adoree’ Jackson and Soma Vainuku to sit out. (Reign Of Troy)
  • Michael Castillo points out that Allen’s numbers are on pace to rival those of Reggie Bush and LenDale White in 2005. That’s some major praise for the Trojan running back who should be in contention for awards by season’s end. (Reign Of Troy)
  • ESPN’s Pac-12 Power Rankings have the Trojans vaulting into the No. 2 spot (ESPN)
    • Meanwhile we’ve got a look at USC’s prospects in the Pac-12 South after Saturday’s victory. (Reign of Troy)
  • Jason Fray has some game grades for the Trojans and Wildcats. (Bleacher Report)
    • In a similar vein, we praised and shamed the Studs and Duds of the Tussle in Tuscon. (Reign Of Troy)
  • Going forward, Sarkisian wants to make better use of USC’s athletes in the receiving corps by going long, as Gary Klein reports. (LA Times)
  • In an alternate universe, is USC a top-five team? Sarkisian thinks so, but for that pesky ASU Hail Mary, as Scott Wolf reports. (LA Daily News)
  • True freshman stepped up to the plate against Arizona and they may need to do so again in the coming week with Jackson and Seymour limited, as Michael Lev reports. (OC Register)
  • Sarkisian challenged his players in practices leading up the Arizona game to “make a play.” As Gary Paskwietz explains, Allen answered the call. (ESPN)
  • As always, Jordan Moore’s 6-Points features a round up of all the storylines from USC’s victory and finishes with some SnappyTV highlights from the game. (RipsIt Blog)
  • Ready to start looking towards Colorado? The Vegas line opened with the Trojans as heavy favorites over the Buffaloes. (Reign Of Troy)

Stat of the Day:

Buck Allen is the only player in the nation with at least 750 yards rushing and 250 yards receiving in 2014.

Tweets of the Day: