Clay Helton Wants To Make Sure He Is Right On QB Decision

Here’s is USC coach Clay Helton after Tuesday’s practice on waiting until next week to name a starting QB: “I want to make sure I’m right, too.”

Extending the competition to next week is good for the morale of the players. But I don’t know why Helton needs to make sure he is right. Unless he remembers he was wrong two years ago.

But not starting JT Daniels would really devastate Helton’s reputation because everyone knows he is the best QB and if Matt Fink or Jack Sears struggled, the boo birds would be out early.

At least if Daniels starts and struggles, which is not an outlandish thought, it will be attributed to being a true freshman.


22 thoughts on “Clay Helton Wants To Make Sure He Is Right On QB Decision

  1. If Sears and Fink aren’t better than Daniels after all their time & reps with the program, give it to Daniels and give him a chance to grow. And don’t worry about J. T. struggling against UNLV.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Frankly, I think Helton is going to use UNLV as a scrimmage to prepare for Stanford. Play everyone two deep to keep injuries down and so everyone is ready for Stanford to keep it fresh. It really is our opening season game. This is why he wasn’t in a rush to declare a starting quarterback. We need to beat Stanford in the trenches and keep ball control and that means establishing the run game so we can utilize JT to exploit the secondary. Stanford is going to keep trying to ram it down our throat.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. This season he’ll be trying to ram it down the throats of 3 320-340lb Samoans and a Juco transfer that’s just as big. That part I think we have covered. I’m thinking they’ll need to option out ends. Can’t see them running up the middle anymore. I think Pili stoned them on the goal line last year in the CCG, giving Nwosu the chance to strip the ball and tfl.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Pudly— It’s plain from practice that Clay is getting USC ready for bruising games against Stanford and Texas. I think Shaw sees qb Costello as the difference maker in that kind of game. Costello isn’t that much better than Keller Chryst —but he’s “better” enough to make some trouble (and, unlike Chryst, Costello actually BELIEVES he’s a difference maker—-that counts for something).
        On a separate front, I bet Manuel Rascon is 100% right about Clay —-he’s going to play everybody against UNLV & consider the game a victory if we escape without injuries. There is one tiny little problem with that approach, though —- it would be better for us down the road if whoever is starting at qb (hopefully, J. T.) got 100% of the snaps up until the score got to, say, 35 -0. I’d hate to see us not give the starting qb a chance to get comfortable behind center before he faces Stanford at Palo Alto.

        Liked by 1 person

      3. You have to play a full 4 quarters against Stanford because its like a championship fight as the body blows they give you in the early rounds start to take their toll in the later rounds and you start to make mistakes.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. I agree Micheal. There are a couple notable differences this year besides the defensive line. One is the dbs. We will be bigger without Jack and Hawkins. Physically taller and that might help us cover their tight ends better. Jones got torched by them in the last game. Also the depth of the defensive front 7 is the deepest since PC was coach and even with a depleted line we led the nation in sacks. The other, and this is no put down of Sam, but JT can throw the ball to all corners of the field much farther than even Sam could. This will make stanfurd defend more of the field. They will blitz early and make the kid call protections and make hot reads quickly. if he does it early they will have to play honest on defense or JT will feast.
        Or not and we lose every game and Scott (me) gains rockstar status!!

        Liked by 1 person

      5. I’ve seen a ton of comments elsewhere on what we can expect from the Stanford game —–and, no shit, Pudly, yours is the brightest piece I’ve read. I’m positive you’re right about the d-line and I hope you’re right about the secondary. They need to hold up their end of the deal this time.
        [Re-reading your comment makes me finally see why Clancy is doing what he’s doing to J.T. in practice —- blitzing the crap outta him to get him ready for the kind of 2 second decision making he’s gonna need to keep us moving].

        Liked by 1 person

      6. Looking ahead is the worst thing that can happen in any sport. Once teams start doing that, they almost always drop the game.

        Take every game one game at a time. You can’t get to 2 – 0 or 3 -0 without winning the first game. Focus on the first game that week alone.

        Pete Carroll treated every game like the championship game. No one game is bigger than any other. Focus on the moment and just play the game/team in front of you.


        Liked by 1 person

      1. The whole “Trump playing for USC” thing started last year when a couple of irresponsible journalists said that it was Trump, not Sam, that played against Notre Dame.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. A bunch of people said it was just Darnold being unsociable to the team…..smdh!

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Ha! [I saw it too, Pudley. And there was that weird post game interview, helmet on of course, where he couldn’t stop praising Putin].

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Small ball – the team and coaching staff know who the QB will be.

    And I love the “mistake” narrative from two years ago. If he started Sam against Alabama and Stanford and he got crushed, you would have destroyed Clay in your blog. Why in the world would you not start the Veteran QB who is at least tied with the young pup? Writes itself. That’s the benefit of being the critic rather than being the creator – the leader. It’s easy. Unfortunately for Scottie, a number of us have been following his blog for years (and LOVE IT). But we remember the screw ups. As such, the sanctimony doesn’t work. But it’s why we come here – for the attitude. We go to Dan Weber, etc. for the straight story.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. In the good old days freshmen were not allowed to play varsity football. The guys who earned their shot got the nod. All energy was poured into getting the number one ready. Now in our instant gratification world the newest flashy toy comes along and everyone drops the last guy like a rag doll. Why don’t we have our cake and eat it too? Start Sears, if he falters by half time you have two choices for replacement . We have good quarterbacks for a couple of years. Browne was a fluke and Sam was a pleasant solution. I would have bet on Browne as a starter, he was one of the best on paper. That Helton took too long to change is part of his character, old school, give the guy a chance coach. It backfired but I doubt Helton wants to see it happen again.


    1. Why start him if he isn’t the best. He has had a year and a half in the system.With your suggestion why not put Fink in as he has been there the longest. The team knows JT is the one to lead them and in the reverse of your suggestion if JT falters put Jack in.


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