A loss on the road that is all too familiar. Time for a satirical recap of the matchup between the USC Trojans and the Washington Huskies.
Get this USC team off my television.
Every loss is the exact same, which makes every recap sound like a broken record.
While I think about it, every GAME is the exact same. It’s just sometimes the Trojans are lucky enough to have more points than the other team at the end of regulation.
Lack of discipline. Penalties. Turnovers. Inability to finish drives. It’s been the same blueprint for the last five years. Wonder what the common denominator for the last half-decade of USC football has been?
I honestly don’t think I can remember the last time USC played a complete game of football. Not just a win, but four full quarters of mistake-free, well-executed football. Washington in 2016? Oregon in 2016? Wouldn’t be able to give you a game in which Sam Darnold wasn’t under center.
These losses are the worst because there is an argument to be made that USC could have won. USC has legitimately lost to a better team better maybe less than half a dozen times during the Clay Helton era. Which is why his reign of mediocrity is so frustrating to live through.
Nebraska lost to Ohio State 48-7 on Saturday night. While the loss may be demoralizing now, eventually Cornhusker fans can come to terms with the fact that they had no chance in beating the Buckeyes that night. Trojans fans will never have that peace.
Almost every game USC has lost and will lose as long as Helton is head coach is a game they could have easily won if they didn’t make mistakes and played to the talent level they are being recruited at. The Trojans could have easily have beaten BYU and they had more of a chance in the Washington game than what the score dictates.
None of this will change under Clay Helton because he has absolutely no idea how the fix the problems he has. If he did, you would have at least seen some changes (or attempt at changes) in the last five years in the way the Trojans practice, their discipline, or overall gameplan. How does this team switch coordinators but the offense looks exactly the same?
Again, it seems like there is a common denominator to all the problems the Trojans have had the last couple of seasons…
Some Random Observations From The Game
- If USC ran the Wildcat all game, they would have won. The point I’m trying to make here is that Matt Fink is awful.
- Can you imagine running for over 200 yards and losing? I hope you can, because apparently it happens a lot with USC.
- Matt Fink should keep throwing to a true freshman instead of TYLER VAUGHNS, MICHAEL PITTMAN JR., AND AMON ST. BROWN.
- Love the play call on fourth-and-goal of throwing a fade with the intention of drawing a pass interference penalty. Worked for the 49ers in Super Bowl XLVII, right?
- Loved the non-existent sense of urgency the Trojans had all game. Down two touchdowns in the fourth? Definitely take 30 seconds to line up and call the next play. You can tie it up in the fifth quarter.
- I’m sick of hearing about how our punters are “struggling.” I’ve heard it multiple years. It’s kicking a ball in the air. It can’t be that hard. Finding a decent punter can’t be as hard as USC makes it out to be. I was told this Australian punter was going to be great! I’ve seen pre-teens punt the ball farther in Pop Warner games.
- Maybe the players love Helton so much because he’s soft and doesn’t discipline them at all? It’s the same reason why students love substitute teachers. Don’t forget that’s how Clay Helton got this job in the first place. As a substitute coach.
- Two unsportsmanlike penalties in this game: One for the quarterback spiking the ball and the other for an injured safety celebrating on the field. It takes a special skill to get flagged when you aren’t even suited up to play, but getting backbreaking penalties seems to be the only thing USC excels at.
- Since when can you not celebrate by spiking the football? Every sideline has their own version of the turnover chain, but pretending to be Rob Gronkowski after scoring a touchdown is a bridge too far?
- If Matt Fink was going to end up playing like this, I would much rather have had him lay an egg against Utah too. That miracle of that performance from him bought his head coach the rest of the season. I could be writing about interim head coach Clancy Pendergast right now.
- Clay Helton is now 15-15 without Sam Darnold. That record might be below .500 in two weeks.
The game can be summed up this sufficiently:
Washington had 15 points off turnovers, and USC had four scoreless drives that started or ended in Washington territory.
The Trojans had a short field FOUR TIMES and couldn’t come away with any points. Contributing factors to those four drives include Graham Harrell turning into the Seahawks’ version of Pete Carroll when the Trojans were on the goal line and Matt Fink forgetting which color his teammates were wearing. Must be an after-effect of entering the transfer portal. When you exit, you aren’t sure what team you’re on.
The summary above is better than anything you are going to get from Clay Helton and his pointless press conferences. I am honestly shocked anyone still attends them with the boilerplate rubbish he provides reporters asking him questions. Some of these hollow statements include:
- “Team played with heart, were competitive and played hard”
- “We need to clean things up.”
- “We will look at the tape.”
- “The issue is closing drives.”
- “We made too many mistakes to win the game.”
- “We need to be more disciplined.”
If for any reason, you find yourself waiting for Clay Helton to walk up to the podium following a loss, do yourself a favor and just refer back to this recap because the quotes above have been repeated after EVERY. SINGLE. GAME.
This coach and this team is a broken record.
USC needs to upgrade to a streaming service.