USC Football Circles Wagons With Sam Darnold At Quarterback

Mar 8, 2016; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Southern California Trojans quarterback Sam Darnold (14) during spring practice at Howard Jones Field. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 8, 2016; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Southern California Trojans quarterback Sam Darnold (14) during spring practice at Howard Jones Field. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports /

USC football is circling the wagons with Sam Darnold at quarterback, granting the wishes of many by going in the dual-threat direction.

You could almost see this coming when Sam Darnold was told he would be the backup versus Alabama, even as many USC football loyalists wanted to move into today’s world of college football with a dual threat quarterback under center.

That’s not a knock on Max Browne and his vast potential. Browne may still prove himself worthy of all the stellar ratings from his spectacular high school career, but for the next USC game this Friday night, Darnold will be starting at QB for the first time.

It was fairly predictable that the team would be 1-2 entering Week 4.

To beat either Alabama or Stanford would have taken a near perfect performance from the offense, defense and special teams.  After three games this team is pretty far from playing good ball let only anything near perfection.

If the quarterback move was premeditated, then it’s unfortunate and Darnold should have been given the keys for the season opener.

RELATED: USC Quarterback Switch Left Max Browne Out in the Cold

He would have had three games under his belt already and maybe the offense would not look so pitiful.

You just can’t blame the lack of production entirely on Browne, but since he hasn’t been very efficient, the team isn’t scoring or even converting third downs, this move had to be made.

You don’t think any coaches are falling on their Trojan swords yet do you?

So a wish for some was granted — to see Sam Darnold start a game at QB.

The redshirt freshman now has to lead not only a stagnant offense but an entire team on the road against Utah.

This team has resembled the U.S. Army in North Africa right before General Patton arrived, in other words, completely dysfunctional, out of sync and defeated.

Good thing Darnold has broad shoulders because he will need them.  For USC to prosper, Field General he must become. George Lucas is a USC guy after all.

Fortunately the defense has been solid and improving, so winning some games under Darnold’s leadership is possible.

SEE MORE: Clay Helton Annointed Sam Darnold the Starting QB Way Too Late

Still, the best known defense is just keeping the other team’s offense off the field, which means converting third downs, which has not happened with any consistency for the Trojans.

That’s where Darnold can excel by picking up five or six yards on a scramble or other improvisations. He’s not the second-coming of Lamar Jackson but he might be the second-coming of Dak Prescott and that would make many in Troy ecstatic.

Winning cures quite a bit in college football and that’s great news because there’s much that needs fixing on this team.

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Maybe Darnold can target all-world receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster a few times even.

Maybe the offensive line can play like cohesive unit and open some holes for Ronald Jones II and Justin Davis.

Maybe the Trojans could choose not to run out of the shotgun.

Maybe that’s wishful thinking.

But, there are at least nine games left in the season. The focus should be on the here and now, because it’s the only thing that can be influenced and changed.

The play-maker Michael Irvin said just the other day that his Dallas Cowboys started one year 0-2 and still won the Super Bowl.

If USC rallies behind Darnold and plays some football, they might actually enjoy it.