USC vs Texas 2017: The matchup by the numbers

Alicia de Artola/Reign of Troy
Alicia de Artola/Reign of Troy /

Ten facts to know about USC vs. Texas, the big rematch between the Trojans and Longhorns this Saturday in the LA Coliseum.

Last week USC Football made a statement by defeating Stanford 42-24, in an incredibly physical game. This week USC welcomes the Texas Longhorns to the Coliseum, in a rematch of 2005 BCS National Title game.  Texas is coming off a huge 56-0 bounce back win vs San Jose State, after losing week one in a shocker to the University of Maryland 51-41.

They will be looking to get their season back on track by upsetting the streaking Trojans. While USC will look to continue its dominant run game against the Longhorns and put to rest the ghosts of Vince Young.

Let’s run down the Trojan v. Longhorn matchup by the numbers.


The number of yards that freshmen Stephen Carr averages per carry. Normally it would be a major faux pas to mention the same stat in back to back weeks. However, after an incredible performance against the Stanford Cardinal, Carr’s YPC actually went up this week. The freshman phenom continues to impress not only averaging 10 yards per carry but also averaging 10 yards a reception through two weeks.


The number of career touchdowns that Texas’ leading rusher Chris Warren III has scored. The 6-foot-4, 250-pound junior running back has amassed 197 yards on 22 carries along with two touchdowns in 2017. Averaging nine yards per carry, Warren will pose a unique challenge for USC being the largest running back they have faced this season.


The number of schools that USC has played from the state of Texas. USC has faced University of Texas, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, Houston, Baylor, Rice, SMU, and TCU. The Trojan’s record in games against schools from the state of Texas is 22-5-1. The only losses come to Baylor, who USC is 2-3 against, and Rice, who USC is 3-2 against. For those who may be wearing burnt orange, USC does have a vacated loss to Texas.


The yards per attempt for Texas’ leading passer, sophomore quarterback Shane Buechele. In two games, this season Buechele has gone 34-for-52 for 375 yards, two touchdowns and only one interception.  However, Buechele suffered a shoulder injury and did not play in Texas’ win over San Jose State. If Buchele is unable to play, true freshman Sam Ehlinger will make his second career start. Ehlinger threw for 222 yards and a touchdown in his first start against San Jose State last Saturday.


The number of times that Sam Darnold has thrown at least three touchdown passes in a game. The Heisman hopeful has also had four games in which he has thrown at least four touchdown passes. So far in 2017, Sam Darnold has thrown for 605 yards and four touchdowns with four interceptions. Darnold also has a 74.5 completion percentage and a quarterback rating of 169.5


The number of players on USC’s roster from the state of Texas. Running backs Aca’Cedric Ware and Chris Edmondson, inside linebacker Levi Jones and quarterback Thomas Fitts hail from the Lone Star State. There is also the Texas Tesla himself, Ronald Jones II. USC’s tarting running back will have a chance to add to his Pac-12-leading five rushing touchdowns Saturday against the Longhorns.


The number of non-offensive touchdowns that junior Longhorns defensive back Holton Hill has in his career. As a freshman in 2015, Hill returned a pick for a touchdown and the defensive back has two interceptions returns that count towards that tally from this year, along with a blocked kick returned for a score. With a pick six in each of the first two games of the season, he is the first Longhorn with back-to-back games with an interception returned for a touchdown since Greg Brown in 2000.

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The number of home games the Trojans will have played to open the 2017 season. After the game on Saturday, USC will end its home stand and go on the road for games at Cal and Washington State. The next time USC will be back in the Coliseum is Oct. 7 when they will take on the Oregon State Beavers.


The number of 100 plus yard rushing performances that junior tail back Ronald Jones II has had to open the season. After an eye-popping performance with 159 yards on 18 carries versus Western Michigan, Jones turned in a gritty 23-carry,116-yard game against the Cardinal, which many had tabbed as the best defense in the Pac-12. Jones has seven 100 or more yard rushing performances in his career, with his career high coming in 2016 with 223 yards vs Cal.


This will be the first road game for the Texas Longhorns in the 2017 season. It will also be the first time that Texas will face USC at a non-neutral site game since 1967.  Officially, that was the last time that USC and Texas played, when the Trojans left with a 17-13 victory. Of course, USC also vacated a loss to Texas in the 2006 national title game. Saturday USC will be looking forward to vacating those memories with a win over Texas.