This USC football team looks outstanding to begin the season. Starting off 2-0, they are ranked seventh in the country as they come back home and get ready to play Fresno State for their Week 3 matchup. Travis Dye has been a major part in that success, as he's averaged 6.6 yards per carry on the season, which is even higher than his career-six yards per carry average.
So, he's maybe even been better than he was with Oregon. Keep in mind, he's been a sixth offensive lineman on the field whenever he's called on to block. He's also been productive when his number's been called in the receiving game, reeling in four catches for 40 receiving yards.
Considering how USC runs a THREE-back system, it's safe to say Dye has been at least arguably better than he was with the Ducks. Regardless of anyone's opinions there, Dye hasn't addressed that. He has, however, addressed whether this team as a whole is better than any one he's ever played with at Oregon. He certainly did not miss with his answer, either:
Travis Dye said that this USC football team is better than Oregon's 2019 team.
For Travis Dye to let everyone know that this USC football squad is better than one that won the Rose Bowl is eye-opening. And sure, non-CFP New Year's Six Bowl Games haven't meant much these last five years with all the opt-outs and lack of motivation to play, but that team still won a Pac-12 Championship.
Regardless of whether one considers that Rose Bowl to have particularly mattered that year or not, they were the best team in the Pac-12, and Dye has this USC crew as better than a team that was the best one in the Pac-12. That's noteworthy. Winning the Pac-12 would be a great first step for this program in Year 1 of the Lincoln Riley era, so this is nice praise to hear from Dye.
And looking at it, can anyone blame Dye for thinking this? Maybe, but it's at least understandable for him to think this way. USC has outscored their opponents 105-42 this season, and is tied for first in the entire country with 53.5 points per game. It's not just Dye and the rest of the running back room that's getting it done, though. The passing game has been unreal.
It's first in America with 11.77 yards per pass attempt. Led by starting QB Caleb Williams, the offense is second in the country in passing efficiency (212.57). They're also second with 8.62 yards per play as an overall offense. Defensively, the team leads the country in defensive touchdowns (three), and has forced four turnovers in each game of the season so far.
There's a lot to like about this SC team, and Dye most certainly agrees. Putting this team over one that won the Pac in 2019 already is encouraging. It's also good to hear from a grizzled vet and leader like Dye, who's most certainly seen quite a bit of football and is trusted in that locker room. He's not the type to make unprovoked statements if he doesn't really believe in the guys.