It’s been a bumpy ride for USC football during the first half of the 2014 season. But it’s also been an awfully familiar spin on the roller coaster, as there’s been some eerie coincidences between this year and last year.
In 2013, the Trojans were 3-1 heading into the Arizona State game. They struggled defensively in the second half, imploding their way to a 62-41 loss in Tempe.
Following Lane Kiffin’s termination, they rebounded with a 38-31 win over Arizona despite the Wildcats scoring a couple of late touchdowns and nearly tying the game.
USC then went on to win 10 games and made an unsuccessful run at the Pac-12 South division title, despite digging themselves a huge early season hole.
More from Reign of Troy
- 3 biggest takeaways from USC football’s win over UCLA
- USC football to play Oregon in Pac-12 Championship Game with Washington out
- USC football’s postgame locker room after beating UCLA was absolutely lit (Video)
- USC football’s studs and duds from a wild rivalry win over UCLA
- USC Podcast: RoT’s Carcast reacting to the comeback win over UCLA
This year, the Trojans were 3-1 heading into the Arizona State game. They struggled defensively in the fourth quarter, imploding their way to a 38-34 loss on a Hail Mary.
They then rebounded with a 28-26 win over No. 10 Arizona despite the Wildcats scoring a couple of late touchdowns and nearly winning the game on a field goal in the dying seconds.
What happens next, we’ll have to wait and see.
What we do know though, is that the Trojans’ most manageable part of the schedule is upon us. After playing six bowl teams from last year to start the year, USC now plays four opponents with losing records from a year ago, all of which they’ll be favored to beat.
This stretch leads into a daunting two-game end of the season against rivals UCLA and Notre Dame.
If the Trojans want to win 10 games, they’ll have to win out.
That would include a pair of wins of teams currently ranked in the Top 25, as Utah is 20th and Notre Dame sits at No. 5.
Needless to say, 10 wins are a tall task. And to be fair, the Trojans needed 14 games to hit the 10-win mark last year.
But hey, if you believe in history repeating itself…