Saturday, October 3, 2009

Trojans Should Beat Cal Tonight

let me just preface this by saying I'm pulling for the Bears in tonight 's big showdown with the Trojans. But USC should win this one. Here's why...

The Trojans have an offense that has racked up a lot of yards. They rank #1 in the conference in total offense (which is measured by yards gained). They can move the ball well.

Likewise, when it comes to total defense, they are ranked #2 in the conference. They can stop you from moving the ball.

The problem is they aren't moving the ball when they need to.

Despite being #1 in total offense, the Trojans only are only the 5th ranked team in term of scoring offense. A more shocking number is that USC ranks dead last in the conference in 3rd down conversion percentage.

The other big problem is turnovers. They have a turnover margin of -2 right now. That's good for 8th place in the conference.

They are a team with plenty of horse power, but the engine isn't firing on all cylinders right now.

With Carroll at the helm, it's just a mater of time before SC puts it all together for a game.

I think they do that tonight against a suspect Cal defense.

Pressure is on the Offense

It seems like all the stories this week have been about Toby Gerhart and the Standford running game. Everyone wants to know if the Bruin's defense can stop him?

The short answer is: no. They can't.

I don't think any defense can really stop someone as talented as Gerhart. He'll get his yards and points and there really isn't anything you can do about it.

That's why I think the real story is the Bruin's offense.

Can Craft and Franklin and the young line put together enough drives to out score the Cardinal? Our defense will limit Stanford, that's for sure, but our offense will have to deliver if we're going to come out of this one with a win.

The best case senario would be some early scores on offense to put the pressure on Luck and the Stanford passing game. The best way to prevent the Gerhart from running wild on you is to keep the ball out of his hands in the first place.

That will be a tall order indeed.

The biggest weakness on the Cardinal defense is their secondary. Craft doesn't have the arm to really challenge them deep. Somehow UCLA has to find ways to get the ball out into space away form the Stanford front seven.

I think if the Bruins can play well on offense then our defense will keep the Cardinal under 20 points. That's 3 touchdowns for the Bruins to win.