USC football No. 14 opens Pac-12 game at Stanford in primetime game

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Soccer | September 05, 2022

THEMES

*Nope. 14 USC will play the first Pac-12 game of 2022 when it travels to challenge longtime foe Stanford in Palo Alto, Calif. This is a primetime televised game on ABC.

*Stanford is USC’s oldest rival, dating back to 1905. The Trojans have won 5 of the last 10 games against the Cardinal since 2013 (the two teams haven’t met in 2020 for the first time since 1945).

*USC has won just one of its last 5 road meetings at Stanford, dating back to 2010.

RICE GAME RECAP

* USC ushered in a new era of USC Football under the leadership of the head coach lincoln riley with a 66-14 victory over Rice in Coach Riley’s first game at the Coliseum.

*First candidate for Heisman QB Caleb Williams completed his first 5 passes and finished the day 19-for-22 for 249 yards and 2 touchdowns. His 86.3 completion percentage was the best by a Trojan quarterback with a minimum of 20 attempts since Matt Barkley had a 95.0 completion percentage against Colorado on Oct. 20, 2012. Williams also led USC rushing with 68 yards on six carries.

* After much anticipation of seeing the WR transfer Jordan Addison cardinal and gold at the Colosseum, he had a team-leading 5 catches for 54 yards and 2 touchdowns (3 and 5 yards) in his debut at Troy. Back WR Tahj Washington led USC with 65 receiving yards on 4 catches. In the racing game, RB austin jones led USC with 2 rushing touchdowns on his debut at Troy. Jones now has 14 career rushing touchdowns. He had 4 carries for 48 yards, scoring on 4 and 28 yard runs. True Freshman RB Raleek Brown had a 14-yard TD rush in the second quarter for the first score of his career. He finished the game with 6 carries for 36 yards and a touchdown. He also caught 2 passes for 40 yards.

*The offensive line led by C Brett Neilon allowed only one sack by the Owls and opened holes for the current game.

* On the defensive side of the ball, DB Calen Bullock returned a 93-yard interception for a touchdown in the second quarter. It was his third career interception and his first return for a TD. It was the first pick-six by a Trojan since Greg Johnson (37 yards) against San Jose State in Game 1 of 2021 on September 4. His interception return for a touchdown was the longest by a Trojan since Cleveland Colter returned a 94-yard interception at California on Sept. 26, 1987. ILB Shane Lee also returned a 40-yard interception for a touchdown in the third quarter. It was his second career interception and his first return for a score. Lee led USC with 8 tackles. HE B Ralen Goforth also returned a 31-yard interception for a touchdown in the third quarter. It was his first career interception.

* USC’s three interceptions came back for a touchdown against Rice tying the school’s three-game record, which was also set Nov. 11, 1982 at Arizona. In the game at Arizona, one of the touchdowns was an intercepted fumble returned for a score that was then classified as an interception (in 1982 you couldn’t return a fumble unless it was in the air). USC’s 3 interceptions returned for a touchdown also tie the Pac-12 record.

*DB Xamarion Gordon also had an interception to give the Trojans 4 total interceptions. The last time USC had 4 steals in a game was September 23, 2017 against California.

*PACK Dennis Lynch saw his first game action for USC and went 9-for-9 in extra run attempts and made a 25-yard field goal. Lynch came within an extra point of tying USC’s 10-for-10 record in extra points, set by Mario Danelo in 2005 against Arkansas.

*As Coach Riley said “This is the most unique roster in USC Football history,” and 9 of the 22 starters were transfers.

STANFORD SCOUTING REPORT

* Head coach David Shaw (whose uncle was a USC All-American) watched his Stanford team defeat Colgate 41-10 in their season opener in Palo Alto, Calif., on September 3. QB Tanner McKee (2021 Pac-12 honorable mention) was 22 of 27 for 308 passing yards with 2 touchdowns. Last season, McKee was 206 of 315 (65.4%) passing for 2,327 yards and 15 touchdowns. He played 10 games with 9 starts. In his first career start last season at USC on Sept. 11, 2021, he became the first Pac-12 QB since Tavita Pritchard in 2007 to defeat a ranked opponent on the road in his first career start. His 19 total touchdowns (15 passing, 4 rushing) are the most by a Stanford freshman (real or redshirt) in school history. Andrew Luck (2009) and Steve Stenstrom (1991) both had 15.

* Stanford’s top four wide receivers, Elijah Higgins (2021 PFF Pac-12 honorable mention), John Humphreys, Brycen Tremayne and Michael Wilson, as well as tight end Benjamin Yurosek (2021 PFF Pac-12 first team) are all from return. Those five combined for 147 catches for 1,870 yards and 13 touchdowns in 2021. Against Colgate, Humphreys had 88 yards for Stanford, which was highlighted by a 53-yard catch on the Cardinal sideline. Wilson contributed with five catches for 82 yards.

*RB EJ Smith, the son of former Dallas Cowboys star Emmitt Smith, returns to the Cardinal backfield. Against Colgate, he had career bests 118 rushing yards and five catches while running for two touchdowns on 11 carries to help the Cardinal break a seven-game losing streak that dates back to last season.

* Stanford’s offensive line fires all five starters.

* On the defensive side of the ball, the Cardinal made a change of pattern during the offseason. They are moving from a 3-4 defense to a four-front for the 2022 season. Against Colgate, ILB Levani Damuni led the team with 10 tackles, while ILB Tristan Sinclair, ILB Jacob Mangum-Farrar, S Kendall Williamson and ILB Ricky Miezan each recorded 5 tackles.

* In the Cardinal secondary, CB Kyu Blu Kelly, who led the Pac-12 with 13 passes defended a season ago (11 pass breakups, 2 interceptions), returns ready to make an impact.

*Against Colgate, Stanford committed 4 turnovers, including a McKee interception and had 3 fumbles on punt returns.

* In Saturday’s game (September 10), Stanford will recognize its Hall of Fame class, along with Andrew Luck for his induction into the College Football Hall of Fame class of 2022.

RANKINGS

*USC is ranked No. 14 in the AP Preseason Sports Media Poll and 15th in USA Today’s Coaches Poll. Stanford is unranked. New rankings are released on September 6.

SERIES

* USC holds a 63-34-3 lead over Stanford (Troy’s 2005 win was overturned due to an NCAA penalty; original record: 64-33-3). USC has only 6 wins in the last 16 meetings. In his last 45 games with the Cardinal, USC has gone 30-15-1 (and Troy is 45-18-1 in the last 64 games).

*Stanford is USC’s oldest rival, with the series dating back to 1905.

* USC’s record in games at Palo Alto is 34-12-2. USC has lost there only 7 times since 1972 (and only 8 times since 1956), but is 7-7 on the last 14 trips. Troy has lost 4 of his last 5 games in Palo Alto, including 3-17 in 2018 on his last trip there.

CONFERENCE VERSUS PAC-12

*USC has won 69.6% (482-202-29) of games against current Pac-12 opponents (does not include 9 wins later vacated due to NCAA penalty; record original: 491-202-29, 70.0%).

PAC-12 OPENERS

* In conference opens, USC is 70-24-5 (.732) and Troy has won 32 of its last 51 (and 45 of its last 65). In conference openers on the road, the Trojans are 28-14-2 (.659), having won 23 of their last 36 games. (does not include 1 win vacated due to NCAA penalty; original records: 71-24-5, .735 overall, 33-of-51, 46-of-65; and 29-14-2, .668-over road, 24 out of 36.)

IN SEPTEMBER

*USC has an all-time record of 189-55-8 (.766) playing in the month of September (does not include 3 wins vacated due to NCAA penalty; original record: 192-55 -8, 0.769).

USC-STANFORD CONNECTIONS

*USC has 6 players who have ever attended a Bay Area high school: DL De’jon Benton (Pittsburg HS), DB Mekhi Blackmon (Menlo-Atherton HS), OL Andres Dewerk (Los Gatos HS), RB austin jones (Bishop O’Dowd HS) and WR Danny Ryan (Saint Ignatius HS), Devan Thompson (Edison HS).

*RB austin jones played his first three years of college football at Stanford (2019-21).

*HE B Clyde MooreRob’s uncle was a fullback at Stanford (1980-83) who later attended USC for his JD and MBA. His grandfather, Robin, was the 1956 NCAA 50-yard freestyle champion for Stanford (he once set a world record).

*Graduate Assistant Peyton PellierArnie’s uncle was a linebacker at Stanford (1985-89).

*USC Swimming Assistant Head Coach Lea Maurer was Stanford’s women’s head coach (2006-12) and also swam for the Cardinal (1992-94).

* Stanford head coach David Shaw is the nephew of former USC All-American (1964-66) cornerback and assistant coach (1980-86) Nate Shaw.

*Stanford tight end coach Morgan Turner is related to former USC assistant coach Ron Turner (1985-87), his father, and Norv Turner (1976-84), his uncle.

*Stanford OLB Lance Keneley is the son of former USC defensive lineman Matt Keneley (1993-96), 2-time Academic All-American, and Women of Troy volleyball player Antoinette Lindemann ( Thomas), and the nephew of former USC football players Todd Keneley (1999) and Clay Hattabaugh (1991-95).

* Stanford OL Jaxson Moi’s father, Junior Moi, was OLB-DE at USC (1991-92).

* Stanford women’s beach volleyball coach Andrew Fuller was an assistant at USC for 3 seasons (2013-15) and volunteer assistant Cardinal Lauren Fendrick attended USC law school .

COMPLETE PLAY NOTES (PDF)

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