10 Things USC Needs To Fix To Beat Texas

1.) Coach better

This might seem like a joke. But USC needs to up its game from the sideline. It would be stunning to hear USC had the dreaded “ocho package” for wide receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown and failed to get him the ball, but remember a couple years ago how the USC coaches were unable to get the ball to JuJu Smith-Schuster against Alabama (and quite a few other teams)?

Where is Plan B to combat this?

2.) Protect the quarterback

The way JT Daniels hates to get hit and locks on to a wide receiver, he needs all the time he can get. Texas will blitz after watching the Stanford game.

Can offensive line coach Neil Callaway come up with something to improve the pass protection? Probably not.

3.) Find the athletic director

Is Lynn Swann just a figurehead?

The football program needs supervision and his only move is to give new contracts to Clay Helton, Tee Martin and Clancy Pendergast. Was that Swann’s doing or was he ordered to do it? It’s tough to tell what he is doing.

4.) Commit to the run

USC moved the ball against Stanford but never just pounded the Stanford defense since it seems in love with Daniels passing the ball.

5.) Commit to a running back

Everyone thinks Stephen Carr is the best tailback on the team and he gets 10 carries a game. How does he get a rhythm when he plays a series then goes to the bench for two series. And why doesn’t USC throw to him? Remember how he made the big reception to beat Stanford last season? USC coaches apparently forgot.

6.) Stop shuffling the secondary

Talanoa Hufanga and C.J. Pollard will rotate at safety to replace the injured Isaiah Pola-Mao. Before that, Bubba Bolden and Ykili Ross were playing safety. That means Marvell Tell has had five guys play opposite him at safety.

At cornerback, Greg Johnson and Isaiah Langley split time. The secondary needs to be cohesive unit and it does not help with constant shuffling.

7.) Wake up the bench

Several people told me the USC sideline was dead during the Stanford game. Were the Trojans shell-shocked? Wondering where Sam Darnold was? Looking for some fire from Clay Helton?

Whatever the reason, Texas will be about 100 times louder than Stanford Stadium and if USC shows up without any energy, it could get ugly

8.) Pressure the quarterback

USC doesn’t protect Daniels or rush the opposing quarterback well. K.J. Costello looked like he had all day to pass last week. Texas quarterback Sam Ehlinger isn’t the greatest quarterback but he will look better if there is no pass rush.

9.) Receivers must get better

Tight end Tyler Petite dropped passes while wide receivers Tyler Vaughns and Michael Pittman do not look anything like last year at the moment. What happened to tight end Daniel Imatorbhebhe? If his hip still bothers him, USC should send him to a new doctor.

10.) Stars need to shine

If we learned one thing from the Helton Era, it is that individual performances must overcome poor coaching.

So that means Porter Gustin needs to make more plays. Ditto Cameron Smith and Marvell Tell. That just covers the defense. I don’t have the patience to mention the offense.


30 thoughts on “10 Things USC Needs To Fix To Beat Texas

  1. Neil Callaway needs to be replaced. That guy hasn’t developed an offensive line since he’s been at USC. Seeing how Callaway doesn’t have a clue as to coaching the linemen on how to block maybe it’s time for Clay Helton to use some common sense and bring in a TE and or FB to help block. Opposing teams know that the Trojans offensive line has been the glaring weakness with these Helton teams.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’d dismiss Tee Martin before Callaway.

      Tee Martin’s offense has been soft and predictable. Replacing Callaway isn’t going to help if the offense is as bad as Tee Martin’s been calling games.


  2. JT Daniels hates to get hit. Who likes to get hit. Scott Wolf big bellied armchair quarterback that is. Darnold had happy feet last year with this line. Fix the other issues and JT will grow.


  3. Answers to this list
    1. Not happening
    2. Not happening
    3. He’s a figurehead
    4. Not happening
    5. Not happening
    6. Not happening
    7. Not happening
    8. Not happening
    9. Not happening
    10. Not happening


  4. SCooter.

    It is easy to fix the offense. If I can, then anyone can. Get a tight end on the line tight next to the tackle and get a fullback. Just run power. Give the tailback the ball around 30 times. Run sweeps, counters, power, iso’s, run with two fullbacks and two tight ends. Get rid of that stupid RPO thing. Let the linemen go one on one and double the def tackles. When it is time to throw, have to rb’s and a te to block. If there is no blitz, then they can release.

    However, Martin is insane. By trying to run the same thing over and over and over and over without any success just makes him look bad.

    Get rid of Martin, Callaway, and the db coach after the texas game if SC loses. If Helton won’t then get rid of him and those three other coaches. Let Drevino run the offense.


    1. Tee Martin will never implement any of your suggestions because, according to him, the problem is and always will be…

      “The kids/team didn’t execute.”

      Why bring in all those other changes you mention when he has a built in excuse to use all the time? He can insulate himself from criticism anytime he wants.


      Liked by 1 person

    2. The offensive philosophy won’t change, the coaches won’t be fired, nothing is going to happen, maybe not even after the season. The Goodship Gomer is headed straight for the iceberg but he just doesn’t think anything’s wrong.


  5. Flow:

    #5. Carr is returning from off-season back surgery and missed extensive time. They’re easing him back in. Want the staff to pull another Gustin?

    #7. Wasn’t it you, Flow, who consistently complained that there was too much coach/player rah-rah and towel waving going on in the past? How do you want it?

    Can’t say I disagree with some of your other points, which is shocking to admit.



    1. Yes he was, but if your sideline can’t get any energy on their won, what does that say ? Gomer is duller than mud, his teams reflect it


  6. The writing is on the wall. This team is missing the fundamentals of a top-notch CFB team: excellent coaches, smart play calling, a mature QB, a capable O-line, and a team with confidence, drive and chemistry.

    Things will not go well today…nor anytime soon, until all these issues can be fixed. Sad days for SC football.


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