Morning Buzz: USC-Fresno State Report Card

QUARTERBACK

If you give Caleb Williams more than 2 seconds to throw the ball, forget it. Williams was pretty good vs. Fresno State, which meant he wasn’t quite to the standard of the first two games. But it’s more than good enough.

Grade: B-

RUNNING BACKS

Travis Dye and Austin Jones both rushed for more than 100 yards and averaged nine yards per carry. What else could you want?

Grade: A-

WIDE RECEIVERS

Jordan Addison has an understated style but continually gets open and makes plays. I’m less impressed with the rest of the receivers as a whole but it’s probably not a big deal when you have Williams throwing to you.

Grade: C+

OFFENSIVE LINE

You can argue they pushed around the Fresno State defensive line (good) and that they didn’t always protect Williams (three sacks). They probably should push around a Mountain West Conference opponent.

Grade: C

DEFENSIVE LINE

Solomon Byrd has seized the defensive end spot that the media seemed primed to award Korey Foreman. Performance matters. Tuli Tuipolutu is playing like someone destined to turn pro after the season. Still too many long runs allowed for a top 10 team.

Grade: C+

LINEBACKERS

It’s getting boring to say Eric Gentry led the defense in tackles. Shane Lee is right behind him. But they might need to shore up the front more to prevent teams from running so easily on the defense.

Grade: B-

DEFENSIVE BACKS

The truth is that Jake Haener didn’t really test the secondary. He had a couple nice throws that were dropped but otherwise was pretty ordinary. But no one stood out either. The jury is still out and will continue to be out until USC faces a much-better passing game.

Grade: C

SPECIAL TEAMS

Nothing special and nothing really wrong either, which is probably a good day for Lincoln Riley.

Grade: C

COACHING

I have to admit I like listening to Alex Grinch explain things even if the defense doesn’t always do what he wants and has busted assignments. Lincoln Riley is humming through this non-schedule.

Grade: B

SPECIAL CATEGORY

The Towel Wavers

There were at least three towel wavers on the sideline Saturday night and it seems to be an assigned duty.

Grade: F

50 thoughts on “Morning Buzz: USC-Fresno State Report Card

      1. Davis you ask? That would be Anthony Davis. The original “AD”. Austin Jones runs a lot like him, high stepping and breaking tackles, and Jones has good acceleration through the line.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. 67 –we don’t really need to answer “S” since he doesn’t know whether he’s asking a question [puts question mark after “wants to know”]..
        #Conflicted

        Liked by 1 person

      3. “67 –we don’t really need to answer “S” since he doesn’t know whether he’s asking a question [puts question mark after “wants to know”]..
        #Conflicted”

        🤣🤣🤣

        Liked by 2 people

  1. You forgot to give an “F” to the Equipment Staff for not stopping some of the players from wearing those gawd awful yellow panty hose!

    Like

  2. I’m not going to get individual units a grade but a offensive n defensive grade. Offensive grade B- OL didn’t protect QB well, to many pressures from a MWC opponent. Running backs were great ran hard, physical n smart. WR were average except JA. Others must step up when targeted. Defensive grade overall is C-. DLM was not stout against the run, not much of a pass rush until 2nd half 5 sacks n big strip sack by Byrd, 2nd best DL, pushing Tuli for top dog. LB except Lee n Gentry were ok, but top wrong angles, not shooting into A gaps too stop the run. Gentry plays is ass off, even when he makes mistakes. DB was was ok, nothing spectacular to report TE, got 1 Int, doesn’t count for DB, only 1 PI, which was the best thing that unit did. Wright plays to much soft coverage on WR need to tighten up n play press coverage. Safeties need to tackle better or take better angles when RB gets pass 1st n 2bd levels. ST doesn’t look great. Coaching C-. DC and other position coaches must do a better job period, this is arguably a potential top CFP team talent for talent this team has as much UGA, OSU, ALA. COACHES COACH PLAYERS PLAY

    Liked by 1 person

  3. A+ for the RBs. Both guys ran for a hundred yards, both had over-the-top yards per carry, plus Dye came back from the knee to the groin, and both Dye and Jones broke tackles like nobody’s business.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Loved seeing Dye get back in the game [in a spectacular way] after that cheap shot —it showed Fresno who he is & who we are…..
      #HeltonWouldHaveKeptDyeOutFor5Weeks…

      Liked by 1 person

    2. HEY 67

      THIS IS EXACTLY WHAT I WAS GOING TO POST
      I WOKE
      UP LATE TODAY BUT YOU DID THE HONORS

      EVEN BARLOW SHOWED UP AND HAD SPIRIT. . HE WANTED TO DISDAIN THE FIELD GOAL AND CARRY AGAIN FOR THE FIRST DOWN. WAY TO GO. NO NEED TO PRACTICE THE FIELDGOAL YET. HAH

      Liked by 2 people

  4. Scooter,

    Oline was adequate excpet for those three sacks. Fresno usually brings a good d front line. Offense was steady, not spectacular, just steady. Defense, gave up big yardage. However, on 4th and one on the goal line, Fresno went for thee td. SC’s defense held. That is three goal line stances for SC where the opposing team did not score. BTW, the offense has no turnovers. That is a change. We will see what happens at Oregon St.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I thought O-Line was outstanding. Williams was holding onto the ball too long and the WR’s weren’t getting open. Those sacks were coverage sacks.

      Like

  5. Scooter,

    I hate these tv companies that line up four games and they cut it to the last second before they start the next game. They had the Ohio St game on before the SC. They ended at 7:39 PM and then had 5 minutes of commercials and then they went to the SC game right just before they kicked off. I would like to see more space between the games.

    Networks get an F- – – –

    Liked by 1 person

    1. At this point you’d think programmers would realize games often go 6 or 7 minutes beyond their slots —- they wouldn’t lose viewers if they put half hour “Today’s Scores” programs between games —and cut into THOSE shows as soon as the next game kicked off….

      Liked by 2 people

  6. Scooter, I was listening to the Harvey Hyde show on KLAA 830 A.M. at 10:00 A.M. yesterday. He interviewd the LA Times reporter for SC and the LA Times reporter for ugly. The ugly reporter came out finally and said that uglies attendance include vendors, reporters, security and anyone that got into the game with or without a ticket. Harvey and I estimated that they had around 7,000 actual fans there.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Grading Rule For All Teachers: “No “A’s” till November point of the semester” —
      ….gives folks incentive to work harder!

      Like

  7. It’s called respect. The Fresno quarterbacks didn’t push the D backs because the D backs have earned respect.
    It’s called failure the Fresno offense ran with impunity for much of the game because the defense had no run stopping abilities.
    What will happen in the coming weeks will be a tweaking of the defense in order to more quickly assess the running plays, because there are coaches who coach at USC (as opposed to coaches who hug)
    Reading lips I saw Grinch saying, “what the f@€£ is going on out there? You’re playing like Sh/7 “ I also saw the Fresno quarterback saying, “I heard it pop” while riding on a cart towards the locker room.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. P. T. — It could work out to his advantage. He has another FULL year now if he wants to petition for it…. and with a bunch of juniors and sophomores coming back next year, Fresno could be really good with the right QB…

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Scottie crapped on the Orange Bowl performance back in the day. Score was 55-19, but 19 points was too many points to give up on defense, and the offense failed to produce much after halftime, as Pete played it safe.

      #ToughGrader
      #SomeMightSay”Unrealistic”

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Just for fun, Scott should do up one report card with straight A pluses…
        #…ThenDoAFollowUpColumn:”JustKidding,Everybody!”

        Like

    2. Maybe he’s just more positive now that LR is here. But then again, he was always criticizing PC when he was here. He used to call him “Caesar”. Couldn’t stand any of the rest of the coaches either…..really hated Kiffin.

      Like

  8. Fresno put 32 points against OR St and 17 against USC. OR St scored 35 on Fresno, USC put up 45. Fresno had the game up until the last minute with OR St. USC dominated the entire game and won going away. Now of course there are always things to correct but I am taking USC all the way this week simply because they are better and the record shows it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Agree….but… we will be playing at Corvallis…. and we don’t know quite how fucked up the officiating will get…
      #ThoseAreTheWildcards….
      #[WithTheExceptionOfUSCPac12OfficialsAlwaysHelpHomeTeam]

      Like

  9. When there’s nothing left to hate about a team…Go after the towel wavers! Scottie 2 snarky just can’t get over the fact that USC is playing good football again. FIGHT ON!

    Like

    1. Scott is actually coming around —but all sunshine, all the time just isn’t in Scott’s DNA…..
      #…AndWeHaveColinForThat

      Like

  10. My report card

    Caleb B He is good at evading the rush, but he is missing some easy passes and also missing some open receivers. But he is under alot of pressure.

    Running Backs A Incredible backs.

    Offensive line B- The offensive line would get an A- if not for the left tackle position which gets a D.

    Receivers B+ Some dropped passes that should have been caught

    Defensive Line C- The bad is really bad, but Solomon Byrd could help them turn a corner. You cant rate this unit much higher until they can stop getting pushed so far out of position.

    Linebackers C Eric Gentry could be great, but still needs to learn where to put himself on the field. Shane Lee is missing tackles or simply taking bad angles to the ball

    Secondary C+ The secondary is partly to blame for the run game.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. USC ASU 730PM on Oct 1st
    F**K – I hate the 730pm start which really means 745pm which results in game over at 11PM and home at 1AMish!!

    Thanks ESPN and PAC 12 TV contract!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. If we beat Oregon State we could have capacity crowd for poor, coach-less Arizona State….
      #ReverseOfLastYear’sSituation

      Like

      1. IF. ???????

        iF ????????

        MICHAEL
        YOU HAVE TO THINK POSITIVE

        IT SHOULD BE
        WHEN
        WHEN WE BEAT THOSE PUSSY BEAVERS AND THEIR HOME TOWN CROWD AND OFFICIALS !!!!!!

        WE WIN AND COVER THE SEVEN POINT SPREAD I GUARANTEE IT MG

        Liked by 1 person

  12. The last play of the FSU game showed the difference between the LR culture and the CH culture and probably shows why LR started his reign by getting rid of a lot of CH’s players. A lot of Clay’s players had the mentality of mediocricy. You saw it in the last game of the 2021 season when a lot of those players never even showed up for the game. As far as they were concerned, it was a failed season and the season was over(even though there was one game left). That was the Clay Helton culture. LR had to get rid of those guys. They didn’t think like a champion.  It is interesting when you listen to LR talk about the players that they went after in the portal. If you listen closely it seems like he was saying that it wasn’t all about their physical ability. They wanted a player with the right mentality. They wanted a player who was a team player as opposed to one who was all about himself.  Had Clay been coaching this FSU game with his players, they would have let them score on that last play. Why risk an injury? They were ahead 45-17. So what if it ends up 45-14? Just let them score. The LR players think differently. They played that last play like they were ahead by 4 points and it was win or lose, depending on whether they stop them or not. The LR players think differently. Their attitude is that you go 100% for 60 minutes, not 59. LR is trying to develope players physically and build in them a championship mentality.

    Like

  13. I’m certainly concerned about the OSU game. Can we stop their power running game? I hope so. But, really, if you are going to bet money on these games, you’d have to go with SC. Oregon State is lucky they won the FSU game. They had to mount a drive right at the end to pull the game out 35-32. If you just look at the box score, you would think that FSU won. They gained 100 more yards(almost 500 yards), more first downs and a 33-26 advantage in TOP.True, FSU didn’t play OSU in Corvallis, a tough place for anyone to play. Also, OSU faced Haener for the whole game. USC faced him for barely over 2 quarters. But I’m not sure that would have mattered since, FSU’s 2nd string QB was 11-12 for 144 yards. You can’t get much better than that. So ultimately the best bet would be USC. But I’m still concerned about the game. There is something about that Corvallis stadium, Pete Carroll lost twice to OSU(2006 and 2008)….both at Corvallis. Lane Kiffin had a real good team in 2010. They were in every game until OSU in Corvallis where they got killed 36-7.

    Like

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