USC Finishing No. 3 Reminds Everyone Why QB Decision Relevant

darnold-rose-3USC was No. 3 in the final AP Top 25 poll. This shows once again why the decision to wait until Game 4 to start Sam Darnold was disastrous. You can’t say “move on” if it cost USC a Final Four berth.

If Darnold starts the Utah State or Stanford games, it makes it more likely they beat Utah. I think you can make the case USC could beat Stanford if Darnold started. And who do most of you think was the hottest team at the end of the season? USC.

So the Trojans not making the Final Four was a big deal. And USC’s chances could have easily increased with a simple change at QB.

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  • THE WOLFMAN IS GOD

    The Wolfman nails it once again !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    #BINGO

    • Billy Jean

      Is that you?

      #missingmycharlie

      • Jack B

        I find it hard to believe that Bucket Boy would want to come back after the absolutely horrible beating he took during the last two months of 2016.

        But maybe he is a glutton for punishment, like the rest of the Trolls around here. As SC rules L.A., they like to keep track of what USC does at all times. We own ’em, always have, always will.

        • Old Trojans never die

          If you don’t write anything for a day or two you find yourself going back to look. The whole Blog is a train wreck that I cannot look away from- Why would Charlie the chocolate lover stop coming around?

          • Jack B

            You have a good point there. To make matters worse, Bucket Boy/Wolfman fancies himself as some sort of sick but funny Troll leader.

            I’m sure he’s been stung hard because now he even changed himself to Wolfman/God.

            I was speaking rhetorically of course in my previous post. I’m afraid we’re long stuck with Bucket Boy, aka The Wolfman/God.

        • j metaphor

          Hmmm,
          There was an 8 year run and then a three year stretch there recently that I think you were renters, and Oh Look! it’s basketball season.

      • Helen

        Yes it is. So sad.

    • Hector of Troy

      You got some on your chin Charlie.

      • 04Trojan

        Ha! Poor Chaz.

      • Helen

        … on both chins.

  • LamontRaymond

    Darn that USC! Make better choices! Arggh!! Helton’s back on the hot seat? Damn, that was quick….

  • Globehead

    The Wolfman has Steve Austin bionic eye hindsight!

    Or maybe if Darnold starts against Stanford he gets beat up, loses his confidence and we go 5-7.

    • THE WOLFMAN IS GOD

      The Wolfman knew from the start Darnold was the man

      #HEKNOWSALL

  • Still Doing the Rav Dance

    Wolf has been beating this dead horse so long he should be charged with animal cruelty.

    • Uncle Rico

      How many Brown was screwed post would we see if he was never given a chance to start? Every 5 star that signed with USC would have mention unfair treatment of Brown. Scott is always going to be Scott and play in the excrement.

      • JustOwns

        And Ricky Boy hangs around for a cheap resource to employ in his Hollywood Blvd. street act.

        • Uncle Rico

          Somebody on another thread said to block you. I find your post so refreshing cause it reminds me of what type of fans UCLA have and how I’m so proud to be a Trojan.
          #bozoU

    • j metaphor

      Speaking of dead horses, football season is over.
      See you on the court, SoCal

      • LamontRaymond

        lulz

      • Jethro G Sabbath

        You must be an expert on football seasons being over.

        • Jack B

          Old J Meth is still hankerin’ for the good old days 25 years ago when the bruins had their famous 8-game streak (always their last port in a storm) and still couldn’t accomplish diddly. He’s such a bruin.

  • Jaime

    That horse is dead already.

  • oneillwatch

    Pure speculation. Starting a true freshman against Alabama – who looked great when he wasn’t allowed to be hit by his team mates – would have been ridiculed. Alabama probably wasn’t a fair barometer of Browne, either. As I remember, quarterback was not the only part of the game that was shaky early in the season as well. Time to focus on basketball for the next couple of months.

    • Hector of Troy

      You let someone score 56, you’ll lose 99 out of 100 times.

  • Jack B

    Helton blew it to begin with as 95% of Trojan fans agree. No schools with a pure drop-back QB have any chance against ALA whatsoever, yet Helton, in the interests of at least temporarily keeping Browne on the roster, started him for three games, and fielded a sleep-walking team against STAN that got drilled. Darnold even spoke publicly about the horrible shape the team was in after that game.

    That said, Darnold was finally given his shot to take over and the rest is history. He won the Archie Griffin and is now the #1 upcoming Heisman predictor, despite only starting the final 10 games. USC is ranked in the top 5 pre-season picks by every major sports publication and that is for one reason – Sam Darnold.

    USC football is back in a great shape and deserved its final ranking and nothing better. USC did not deserve a PO slot because we were unprepared to start last season correctly.

    Helton has learned a lot since then, deserves a lot of credit, and it will be very interesting to see if he recruits strongly enough to immediately fill the holes on this team. Hopefully, SC makes the POffs next season because Darnold, possibly our finest QB ever, will be gone. Gotta strike while the iron is hot, and it’s red hot right now.

    • Fred Sampson

      I agree, and as everyone knows, I wasn’t a Clay Helton fan, because he had nothing on his resume to speak of. But know he does, so let’s move on to the next phase of a successful coach, and that would be securing a top recruiting class.

      • Brent4c

        Well stated Fred, we finally agree!

      • steveg

        Good man Fred.

    • marvgoux1

      Darnold gives Helton the confidence to coach aggressively.

  • Pete Smith

    Stop kicking the dead horse–Up date on recruiting

    • Hector of Troy

      He only knows what he reads on FREE sites. Read them you’ll know what he does. Buy a subscription and you’ll be more in the know than he is.

      • THE WOLFMAN IS GOD

        The Wolfman knows every thing USC

        #HEKNOWSALL

        • steveg

          Chuckie you are not. Not even close.

          • THE WOLFMAN IS GOD

            Chuckie?

            #NOCOMPRENDO

    • Jack B

      Surely you know Pete that SW knows nothing about recruiting outside of what is previously reported elsewhere. Don’t make him look worse than he already does.

      • THE WOLFMAN IS GOD

        The Wolfman has all the inside information

        #THEULTIMATEINSIDER

        • Jack B

          Really? What’s your prediction on who else will sign with USC who isn’t already committed? Let’s have it.

          That’s what I thought. The Outsider as usual.

          • THE WOLFMAN IS GOD

            I will make my predictions tomorrow

            #100%ACCURATE

      • Nader

        You are correct….
        … and don’t call me Shirley!

    • peter

      A lot in motion concerning D Tackles.If we can close with the ones we have a good shot at we will be quite pleased.Poly young men with tremendous upside.Again If.We also look to add to what already is a good OL class.Two additional OL,one a lock and one tilting our way.
      Concerning QB,at the Army combine last weekend,best by far was Matt Corral.Most thought he was better than the Seniors in the game.
      He’s Trojan through and through.2018

      • Pete Smith

        Thank you for the info
        FIGHT ON

      • YOLO 4 SC

        How does Matt compare to Tua Tavogailoa?

        • LamontRaymond

          Tua is a non-story after we secured Sears, I believe.

          • YOLO 4 SC

            How do you rank the three ? Sears is a pro-style, can he move or is he another max browne?

          • peter

            Sears won playoff games with his legs.

        • peter

          Good question.I stopped paying close attention to Tua,year ago.I think Tua fits the system Saban likes his OCs to run. Corral from what ive watched and read is extremely strong,accurate,his timing, mobility and athleticism is great.He is about 4.7.He loves to learn and be coached..
          Reports from those at combine who have viewed USC QBs say he is the best at this stage they have studied of Qb going back to Palmer.
          Here’s the key about greatest in my opinion.
          The greatest at each level SEE the game at a different speed than those around them.They slow it into fractions allowing them to make crazy good plays.Darnold does this.He plays in a different zone than those around..You can’t know until a player gets to that level if for sure they have it.Corral will be wait to see when he gets on campus…Yet he has tools better than any in HS now. We’ll see if he plays in that different zone.

          • YOLO 4 SC

            Nicely stated – thanks! Being in the “zone” reminds me of the book Pete Carroll would have all Trojan players read to understand what that means – The Inner Game of Tennis

          • RegalTrojan

            From my limited observation, it looks like Corral is more physically gifted, and Sears might be on the mental side. I think this future QB competition will be very interesting.

          • peter

            So right.It will be very interesting.Sears matured during his Senior year,and has a State title.Matt still has another year in HS to grow in many ways.
            We are blessed to watch Sam next year.When it comes time for Sam to go on,we won’t be left without great talent.

          • steveg

            It would be amazing to find someone from the same cloth as Sam. Even someone close would be a great one.

          • peter

            Sam is special player, not to be duplicated.
            Yet in sport, in each period someone makes their own name.With their own signature.
            Thankfully we have Sam for another year possibly two.
            Its my hope we return to the years of OL and DL dominance.
            It would make transition painless.
            I remember the years of our tailback dominance.The Simpson’s,Davis,White,Bell’s,Allen’s and on.Each a special player. We will have stars after Darnold.Not the same.Yet stars in their own right.

        • Pete

          I seen both QB’s. I was in LA when Oaks Christian played La Habra. Corral is better then Tua in staying in the pocket. Corral has quick feet and moves well in the pocket. Has a strong arm and leads his receivers very well. Reminds me of Aaron Rodgers. He’s always looking downfield, but can ran if he has to. I saw Tua when St. Louis High played in the Hawaii State Championship game against Kahuku High. Big poly kid. Runs well with a strong arm. Busted a 88 yard TD in that game. Runs about a 4.9. With Jack Sears coming to SC Helton stopped recruiting Tua. Sears runs the 40 in 4.6. Good arm. Fun to watch. But I think it will be Corral when Darnold is done. Depending how long Darnold stays.

          • YOLO 4 SC

            Thanks! I think that Tua should have gone to Oregon

          • Pete

            Good question. Hurts didn’t play well in the CFP. Maybe the stage was too big or Kiff called a bad game. Don’t know, but I agree if Tua goes to Oregon….Fight On.

      • THE WOLFMAN IS GOD

        Can the polys dance the dance?

        #PAGOPAGOSAMOATONGA!

        • peter

          Polys are dance..Wonderful Rhythm.Question is will they dance to the Trojan fight song come February 1

    • THE WOLFMAN IS GOD

      The Wolfman is pointing out the obvious!

      #DARNOLDISTHESAVIOR

  • Hector of Troy

    How many ways can you post the same story?

    • THE WOLFMAN IS GOD

      As many as the Wolfman needs for the fans to se the light

      #THEMESSANGER

      • Hector of Troy

        Do you men #THEMAILBOY

  • Hector of Troy

    Scoopin Wolf. 8 Trojans on ESPN PAC12 All Bowl Team

  • Old Trojans never die

    I was thinking about time travel the other day and how absurd it would be to do so. We would be second guessing every decision and why not if it fails we can go back and change the result…. There’s just one thing that stops us from doing it….REALITY
    I guess we will never know what would have happened if Darnold had started the season because he didn’t.

    • Helen

      Not true! You will always know what would have happened because you can read it here.

  • USC jojo

    We should be greatful sw voted them a high #8 in his AP Poll vote. #roguegoldbergofjournalism

  • Helen

    And you can’t say USC would have beaten Stanford or Utah if Darnold had started. And you can’t say USC would have been in the final four if they beat Stanford and/or Utah. Darnold played significant minutes in the first 3 games and didn’t stand out above Browne. Browne didn’t lose the Stanford and Utah games – the defense did.

    Enough with the blame game – USC is trending with a bullet and you can’t handle it.

    • Fight On Forever!!

      That’s what I keep thinking back to also. Darnold got in against Bama just like Jalen Hurts did. If he would have driven down the field for a score just like Hurts did, maybe he would’ve stayed in and the rest would be history. The sideline reporter said that Darnold looked extremely nervous going in and coming out of the game.

      The Utah game, not the Bama game is what killed USC’s shot at the playoff and Darnold contributed to that loss with multiple turnovers. Who’s to say that wouldn’t have happened even if he would’ve started against Stanford? From what I recall he had more TD’s than Browne going into the UT game even though he was the back up.

      • Helen

        If I remember right, Browne and Darnold had nearly identical stats after the first three games. However, Darnold was more turnover prone than Browne.

        We need to give Helton more credit for knowing if Darnold was ready to start for the ALA game. Helton gave Darnold significant minutes during the game and not mop-up duty at the end to see how he would respond during game conditions – and he didn’t distance himself from Browne. Darnold received more minutes in the Stanford game but really took a step forwards and then backwards. Helton continued working with Darnold to bring him up to the level to start a game and, when ready, he was named the starter against Utah. Darnold continued to get better with each game, but was hardly the invincible QB during the first three games that he would eventually end up being at the end of the season.

        I’m looking forward to the off season to see how much Darnold progresses. He’s only played QB two years and is still very young. Arguably he is the best QB in college today and the ceiling should be even higher.

        • JBKayak

          Now that’s he the incumbent, he gets a full off-season to work on timing with his wideouts. Can’t wait to see what he accomplishes next season. Bring on LOI & spring practice! (Too soon?)

      • Pete

        Yes. We have some else who watches the game…..Fight On!

    • gotroy22

      Sure he can. It’s obvious to anyone with half a brain that Darnold would have led USC over Stanford and Utah if he had been made starter in August….so that means anyone but brainless rah rahs like the Dr. Rachel Maddow of Inside USC.

      • schammer47

        Darnold in no way earned the starting QB position for the Alabama game. THE COMPLETE TROJAN OL BREAKDOWN in the Bama game and the Stanford game made it imperative that we replace the pocket passer with the mobile evasive Sam Darnold.

    • Pete

      Glad you brought that up. I was but I get tired of having to explain things when the info is there to look up. Your right about the UTAH game. The turnovers deep in UTAH territory lost the game. Sometimes I wonder if any of USC fans are acutually watching the game or talking to their friends and seeing who’s the smartest or funniest …..Fight On

      • gotroy22

        No the defense’s inability to stop the slant pass lost the game. Go watch the tape again.

        • schammer47

          gotroy22, please reread Helen’s post concerning Browne, Darnold, and Head Coach Helton. She presents the Whole Package with expertise.

      • marvgoux1

        If you watched the game you might blame Mama for losing the game when he wiped out a 30 yard pass play to Rogers with a dumb ineligible man downfield penalty on our final offensive drive of the game.

        • Pete

          Yes I could say I that. Or I could say if Darnold hits A wide open JU-JU in the the left corner of the end zone instead of throwing the ball late Utah loses or Adoree doesn’t slip on Utahs last TD SC wins. One of the problems with the average fan is when the game is close and it doesn’t go their way they will blame the coach for not going for it on a 4th and one. That’s one play out of many plays. Ask any coach and ask him how important are turnovers. Penn St gave SC three extra chances at having the ball. That’s huge. That’s one reason SC was able to run 88 plays vs Penn St 62 plays or something like that.

    • THE WOLFMAN IS GOD

      The Wolfman knew, you know he knew

      #WOLFMANKNOWSALL

      • Helen

        Ya think he can pass on the winning number for this Saturday’s Lottery for loving members of this blog?

    • steveg

      Darnold got into those games, didn’t help much.

  • Fight On Forever!!

    Monday, January 8, 2018. QB Sam Darnold leads USC to a National Championship after an undefeated season with a record setting performance against the vaunted Alabama defense. Game is sealed after Heisman Winner Adoree Jackson picks off Jalen Hurts in the final seconds.

    Tuesday, January 9, 2016 LA Daily News headline: Sam Darnold Wins National Championship. Reminds Everyone Why He Should Have Started in 2016.

    • JustOwns

      How soon the bozo Rah-Rahs forget the 2012 “unfinished bidness season.” bozo u memories, how sweet they are.

      • Hector of Troy

        And USC still finished better than 4-8. Take a seat.

  • Ignore_the_trolls

    For the umpteenth time … almost everybody agreed (including the blogger) that going with Browne initially was the right thing to do (at the time) based on how close they were and Browne’s time in the system. Hindsight is always 20-20.

    • JustOwns

      One head pat for pointing out the obvious.

      • Sas…A.K.A…SamBam

        USC 36
        UCLA 14

    • Sandy Underpants

      I don’t care what happened, I would stick with Browne even today, he just looked the part. Like Robo QB. And where is David Sills and the blind kicker? I was promised these things.

  • Cloud Shaman

    Alabama would of beaten us in the first game anyways. We had lots of holes. We took a circuitous route but ended up the best we could of placed anyways because Clemson and Alabama are better teams

  • MB

    Yesterday it is a post on how the #3 ranking is not deserved, today it is a post on how #3 shows what could have been. Tomorrow, perhaps we return to how this overrated/under-coached team cannot possibly fulfill the over-hyped expectations for next year given how *real* depth has been depleted. Hot takers beware!

  • tigerbalm2010

    Here we go again. Another broken record post for the 100th time.

    At this point, Wolfy might as well say how we can save 50% in our car insurance by switching to Geico.

  • Revisionist history. Foretttaabbbboutitt

    After Sam’s (and SC’s) loss to Utah, the players only got together and had a pow-wow. They forged a pact that they would all work together as a team, and things would change.

    And things did change, obviously. Without that loss who knows what would have happened to the 2016 SC edition.

    Now, if SC had gotten by Utah, and somehow finished 10-2, they probably would have been stationed number 4, behind Alabama, Clemson and Ohio St. That means they would have drawn Alabama, and if somehow they beat them, Clemson.

    Conclusion: SC was not going to win the national title in 2016. Be happy the Trojans pulled out a 1 in a 100 win over Penn State after being behind 14 points with minutes to go.

  • schammer47

    Incredibly significant Rose Bowl event overlooked by Scotty Troll. Our USC QB, Sam Darnold played 4 exhilarating quarters against a Penn State opponent renowned for Sacking quarterbacks, especially in the second half of games. Why, Daily News Finest, have you refused to credit the OL and Coach Neil Callaway FOR PASS PROTECTION THAT DENIED PS A SINGLE SACK OF USC’S QB ? Hat’s off to Coach Neil Callaway and the USC Offensive Line !!!!!!

  • Sandy Underpants

    Mr. Wolf has nailed it. We’ll all be left to wonder about how great USC vs. Alabama for the national championship would have been. Sark vs. SC, Saban vs. Helton, Kiffin vs. Saban, Darnold vs. Bama, Adoree vs. out of bounds kicks, JuJu vs. dropped passes, Maybe SC would’ve scored a TD this time. Doubt it.

  • Sandy Underpants

    If cars were dogs I’d drive a Schnauzer.

  • david benezra

    DUDE! Get some help. How fricking long are you going to stay on this topic. You’re like Trump. Inner child issues, neediness, seeking validation. You don’t know that anything different would have happened. You’re not clairvoyant. Hell, you’re not even Clair Trevor! Wanna’ play the what if game? What is Darnold started against Alabama and got injured (pass pro sucked, if you recall)? What if he was lost for the season? Does USC win 8 straight and go to the Rose Bowl? I don’t fricking think so Lucy!!! What if Darnold started and USC still went 1-3? What if you like the feel of suede? What if? What if? What if? What if you stop talking about something that happened back in September? What if you gave USC’s coaches a well-deserved compliment? What if you were never born? What if?

  • Helen

    USC actually ended up with a higher end-of-season ranking by not being in the final four.

  • Yohanes Lukman

    Monday morning Quaterbacking. Wolf, the ship has sailed.