Discuss The USC-UCLA Game

The crowd was almost silent as time expired. It was that unimpressive. A five-point victory over a 16-point underdog. Clancy Pendergast’s pass coverage is awful. UCLA’s defense gave up its fewest rushing yards of the season (153). Memphis had 162 vs. UCLA.

This was another typical Clay Helton victory. Uninspired and sloppy (11 penalties for 115 yards).

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  • CORTEZ THE KILLER

    Another uninspired unimpressive win against an inferior opponent, welcome to Gomer Ball

    • Michael Guarino

      Hate to agree with you —but you’re 100% correct. After the game, Helton was running around with a really dumb grin —I can guarantee you he had no notion of how badly he coached the game —-and how badly he was outcoached by Mora. Sam was interviewed and said he thought he played really well —-meaning we will never see any growth out of him either. He’s good —but he will NEVER get better.
      The # of dumb penalties in crucial situations (i.e., interference on 4th down when Rosen was trapped, unnecessary roughness after a great stop or a great kick off return, etc. ) not only hasn’t gone down as the season progressed —–it’s gone up. Scott is right —-if Helton were somewhere where he actually had to coach to win a game, he get slaughtered 12 times in a row.

      • David Stewart

        Damn. Well said Michael…spot on.

        • RegalTrojan

          Yes, MG is one of the best Trojan fans I know.

          • Michael Guarino

            Thanks, my bud.
            Man! That was an unsatisfying win, RT!
            Hope we play harder in the Pac 12 CG —-or we’ll end the season on a big down note.

          • RegalTrojan

            MG, this is pretty weird. I honestly can’t remember any win that’s this unsatisfactory. Ever! That was another ugly win that capitalized on the opponents’ miscues and errors rather than by the sheer strength of our team. And it’s been an recurring theme throughout this season against team with lousy records.

          • Michael Guarino

            Boy, does that ever sum up my feelings perfectly. I only feel marginally better than if we had lost. That’s not the way a 10-2 season should feel. And that’s sure as hell not the way a victory over UCLA should feel.
            I think it’s because we both know in our hearts that UCLA played harder than we did —and wanted it more than we did. We just edged them cuz we have better players [except for Jack Jones —who really shouldn’t be playing at this level].

          • RegalTrojan

            You said it, MG! Right on! You got me speechless because you’re like my best spokesperson I’ve never had!

          • Paul

            and got a little help from the refs

        • Michael Guarino

          It didn’t even feel like a win, did it David?
          Win or lose, I hate that feeling of knowing that the other team played harder (and smarter).

          • bb

            You sound like you would be happier as a Bruins fan.

      • USC jojo

        This is the new USC under Helton. When he got the job two years ago, nothing changed. No culture change as to what kind of team he envisioned, nothing. The team looks unprepared every game and plays sloppy.

        He has consistently mismanaged timeouts, players call the shots and get what they want. Any new assistant coaching staff, that gets brought in, with a different philosophy will only cause division within the team/players. A new coaching staff, were culture, mindset, goals, and leadership are working as one, will win here.

        • Michael Guarino

          Actually, I wonder a little bit if this “team” of do-what-they-want individuals would respond to a strong coaching staff at this point —they’ve been babied and coddled for so long, it might be impossible to drill some discipline into them. They actually smile when they’re caught committing dumb, drive killing penalties. It might be too late to turn Helton’s happy go lucky philosophy around with this bunch.

          • USC jojo

            Chuma likes to smile when he’s penalized.
            I think with the right coach, possibly a NFL guy, these players may get the point pretty quick or be shown the door,.

          • Michael Guarino

            That’s my thought. A new coach would have to bite the bullet and say goodbye to 2 or 3 hard cases. And, even then, it would still be really hard to bring discipline to this team —not after the soft practices and hugs and the “I love these guys —they’re my heroes.”

          • bb

            I heard Sark will be available.

          • USC jojo

            LOL! Good one. Yeah, Jimmyball could use him.

      • Arturo

        Spot on like always, MG. We whiffed on the Michigan- UW game, but this comment is spot on.

        • Michael Guarino

          Ha! I wanted us to be right on that one SO bad, Arturo. Maybe Harbaugh will grow himself some offense next year.

          • Arturo

            Harbaugh’s HC seat just got hotter. He’s 1-6 v. top 10 teams. Ouch. They better not get pummeled at the Horse Shoe next week and make it competitive.

          • Michael Guarino

            That’s a tall order, Arturo. I bet Harbaugh is sweating bullets right now. His team has ALREADY given it’s all just to get roughed up pretty good and lose —–and now they have to get back up and try it again against a much better team.

          • Arturo

            Only a bunch of turnovers will keep that game close.

  • RegalTrojan

    Any wins against sucla are welcome, but this Helton’s team is really stressful to watch. The team wins ugly and loses ugly being way too soft and unfocused too often during the course of the game. The secondary allowed way too many easy, big plays from Rosen and his receivers. This year’s SC team has a way of making lousy teams look like excellent teams.

    • Arturo

      Love the win. Didn’t enjoy the process.

      • RegalTrojan

        Ditto!

        • Arturo

          Enjoyed last year WAY MORE, Regal. Way more.

          • RegalTrojan

            A LOT more! Why am I even not ecstatic after this win? Guess I’m really stressed than anything else!

      • 04Trojan

        Yeah. Sloppy.

    • Golden Trojan

      You never know from play to play, is someone going to make a spectacular play or get burned. Not fun to watch, but I will take 10-2 any way they get it.

      • RegalTrojan

        Know what? I was really wondering to myself how in the heck this team is 10-2 with the way they’ve been playing. Sure, winning always beats losing, but I’m mentally drained by this game, and it’s not the first time, either, in this season.

        • Pac12 fan

          They have beat some mediocre opponents .

        • Michael Guarino

          We’re drained, RT, because almost always failing to beat the spread and almost always failing to take advantage of opportunities —gets really old after a while. We all expected a playoff team based on who we had returning and the kind of recruiting classes we’ve put together —–and this team would be seriously embarrassed by any of the top teams in the country. [And that embarrassment may happen anyway in the Fiesta Bowl —-if we get there].

          • RegalTrojan

            It’s all true, MG. And do you think this team can beat Stanford again in the conference championship game? I’d say it will be extremely tough to beat that team twice in the season. And the Fiesta Bowl? It looks so far and lofty at this point from this team.

          • Michael Guarino

            I guess our best hope is that the team rests up, gets re-energized and comes out fighting in the Pac 12 CG game. What they did today is not gonna be good enough.

          • USC jojo

            Stanford would be easier to defend, based on the offense they run, as opposed to WAZZU, who spreads you out. Stanford has looked better since their loss to USC.

          • RegalTrojan

            Yeah, either team won’t be a cakewalk to deal with by any means.

          • Michael Guarino

            What we showed tonight would get us beat by ANY of the Pac 12 north teams in contention. Hope we wake up and take advantage of the great opportunity we have in front of us.

          • Ben Factor

            They can’t. They don’t know what to do!

            Use your brain, not your heart. These coaches just aren’t good enough.

            Secretly, root for USC to get plastered, Then, maybe it will motivate Swann to clean house. This group will never get it done.

          • RegalTrojan

            Hmm…I sure hope so, MG, but we’ve seen this team play 12 games already in this season, and we may have to accept the current patterns and tendencies of the team as their true team character, which may not change dramatically in a matter of couple weeks.

          • Ben Factor

            Guarino isn’t a thinker, he’s just a fan. You’re way too realistic for him.

          • RegalTrojan

            A thinker or a fan, I’m highly fond of MG. But I can’t differ greatly with your take on the team, however.

          • Michael Guarino

            Nice, RT!

          • Ben Factor

            You’re the piece of work, dreamer. It’s not a great team, because it’s not coached by great teachers.

          • SucKiffin

            Gomer better beat Stanford with this 2 weeks off and Stanford playing on a short week … Gomer loses this and he better be shown the door a year early

          • RegalTrojan

            Hmm…I think that’s debatable. Especially if Darnold decides to come back another year. Let’s just say Helton has been very lucky so far in many aspects.

        • SucKiffin

          because the PAC is as bad as its ever been EVER

  • bb

    Just win baby.

  • Arturo

    I think the CFP committee should drop Alabammy and Clamsauce for scheduling FCS opponents. Drop them 1 spot and put Miami at #1

    • Golden Trojan

      There should be a rule, schedule and FCS team, you’re out of playoff contention.

      • Arturo

        Agreed

  • Chris

    nice win! 10-2 is a good season, even with a little too many elevated stress level throughout the year. Finding ways to win is the sign of a good team. Fight On!!!

    • Arturo

      Love the win. Could do without the stress.

      • Chris

        Me too. But a win over UCLA is always sweet. I am glad Rosen is gone, don’t like him for some reason, but with that said, he is good. I knew our secondary would have a rough day.

        • Arturo

          Glad he’s gone too. Reminds me of Jeff George.

          • AtlDDS

            Good call.

  • Jack B

    Winning Ugly takes on a double entendre – USC beats those Uglies again but boy was it sad. Just glad we have no shot at the POs. That would be embarrassing.

    Always great to see USC knock little ucla down again. Scoreboard Trolls! We’re missing your big mouths over here. You know who you are. Get your 5-win bowl petition papers ready. Go CAL!

    • Arturo

      UCLA peaked this week. Hope CAL wins.

      • Michael Guarino

        I don’t think UCLA exactly peaked, Arturo. They just played harder than USC. I can almost hear Mora telling them in the locker room, “We’re UCLA! We always play harder then the Trojans.” Unfortunately for them —-because of the talent differential — just playing harder wasn’t enough. But USC doesn’t have anything to feel good about as a result of this game. Mora outcoached slap happy Helton. Rosen outperformed Sam (big time), the woeful UCLA d-line pushed our o-line all over the place, and Jack Jones proved he will NEVER be any good at corner (you can add that to kick off returns).

        • Arturo

          If we’ve learned anything about college football is that teams are up one week and down the next. When I say UCLA peaked this week I mean that they won’t play this well again next week and therefore this year, MG.
          It is probably why Clemson and Abalama schedule cream puffs like the Citadel and Mercer before big games; it is hard for teams to get up week after week.

          • Michael Guarino

            Not one of your comments has ever seemed simple to me, Arturo. On the contrary, I’ve learned a lot of football from you….
            #…AndABitAboutCourteousDiscussion,Too

    • Michael Guarino

      Truer words were never spoken. Had we beaten Washington State and played a bit better against Notre Dame we might have made the playoffs. What a downer that would have been! A huge national audience watching a sloppy, error-prone USC team get slaughtered. Again.

  • David Stewart

    Another uninspiring win by this football team.

  • Pac12 fan

    Ugh! Secondary was pitiful and exposed 115 yards in Penalties which that part we are consistent. Jack Jones needs to get benched period.

    • David Stewart

      Jack Jones simply can’t cover his butt with both hands!!

  • Pac12 fan

    We are ranked about right. Pac12 pretty weak this year

    • Jethro G Sabbath

      I agree that was a very uninspiring win against what should have been an outmatched opponent.
      You being a fan of the conference, I’d like to know tour opinion of Josh Rosen. If he does go pro after this season would you not agree that his career at UCLA has been a bust.
      – Failure to keep the momentum they had before he arrived
      – Not even a division title in the Pac 12
      – No appearance in a bowl game of any significance
      – Winless against USC Trojans

      • Pac12 fan

        His college career is a bust. But his potential is really high.he looks solid throwing the ball downfield

    • Jack B

      ucla isn’t ranked and hasn’t been all year long except for maybe one week. ucla is one of the major reasons the P12 is so bad this year.

      Too bad you lost another one to the Trojans. Hopefully, we shut you crappy little gutties out of another bowl game. Alls well that ends well little gutty.

  • Paul Muad’dib

    Ucla played their best game of the season and still lost to a terribly coached, uninspired usc team.

    • David Stewart

      Agree Paul…if this does not tell Swann all he needs to know, nothing will.

      • Paul Muad’dib

        Usc should demote helton to qbs coach/recruiting coordinator. Then get a defensive minded coach who can actually coach up players.

        • CORTEZ THE KILLER

          SC should demote Gomer to scout master for some Boy Scout group in Memphis

          • Paul Muad’dib

            Haha

          • bb

            Sc should give him a raise. 10 wins two years in a row is worth a raise.

          • SucKiffin

            Swannie is smarter than Haden … 10 wins next year without Darnold ya keep him
            But looks more like 4-8

          • bb

            Little early to predict and pointless since we still have at least two games left in this season.

          • steveg

            At least?

  • GT

    Jack Jones needs to stop talking and start playing. He was burned all night long! Once again, it wasn’t pretty, but a win is a win.

    • Jethro G Sabbath

      I don’t think he talked or played tonight.

      • Jack B

        I think he was pretty quiet which could be expected as he just showed off probably the worst DB performance in USC history. Poor guy. JJ was just a human target out there. The bruins probably have a play called “25”.

        • Michael Guarino

          Funny. But —guess what? —–next season EVERY Pac 12 south team will have a play called “25.” It will be run 15 times a game.

  • LAfan

    One more win and they have the conference title.

  • Hubert Wilkins

    Wolf, you complain about a “five-point victory over a 16-point underdog” when you said earlier this week in a podcast, that you wanted a close game.

    Make up your mind.

  • Chris

    Herbstreit was dead on about Sam. Spectacular in moments like nobody else, and really inconsistent and poor decision maker in other moments. Our offense, which is Sam oriented, goes as he goes. That is why we have been up and down, because Sam has been up and down.

    • Golden Trojan

      The whole team plays like that, hopefully, everybody can get dialed in and they play more consistent. Sam will be a bust if he goes pro, stay get your game Darnold.

    • JBKayak

      Didn’t Darnold throw zero interception during fall camp two years ago and then, this year, start the camp by throwing a bunch of picks? Was that because of his new throwing motion or him getting to know the receivers? Find out the answer to that, and get Sam back on track

  • Tebow_Obama

    Pendergast needs to stop playing man coverage all game long. NFL teams dont ask their DB’s to play man all game long…its ridiculous

  • Pac12 fan

    I would hate to see this team play in the CFPs this year. We would get destroyed by quality teams

    • Jack B

      You already got beat tonight Troll. ucla is officially 5-6 after another demoralizing loss to USC. Funny stuff!

      • Pac12 fan

        Jack this really wasnt impressive tonight. The secondsry was really bad. Especially my guy Jack Jones

        • Jack B

          You lost little gutty – again. Rosen was never able to beat USC, just like Aikman. Deal with it! Hah!

        • SucKiffin

          Jack Jaw is awful

      • Paul

        Yeah. We lost. But where was the beat-down you’ve been promising for a while in your trolling rants?

        • Arturo

          Aww man. I hear what your saying about no beat down. However, are you really going to celebrate a close loss?

        • RegalTrojan

          Close losses are sometimes more unbearable, so that’s what we had planned and executed, Get it, guttie?

          • Paul

            #dumb

          • RegalTrojan

            #loser

        • Jack B

          Who cares but the losers like you? This is a smack board little gutty. Get it.

          USC played like crap, stunk much of the time, and the Trojans still sent you away losers and 5-6. You never heard of scoreboard? That’s all that counts. Well, read it and weep little gutty: USC 28 – ucla 23.

          Now run along loser and contemplate your next big bowl win.

          • Paul

            Lol…none of your latest trash talk changes your promised beat-down not coming. Congrats on beating a bunch of mediocre teams this year, us included.

          • Paul

            Lol…makes excuses after winning. Classless part of a classless program. Congrats on narrowly beating a bunch of mediocre teams.

    • Jethro G Sabbath

      I’ll give you credit. You try really hard.

    • bb

      If your were a Pac 12 fan you would want Sc in the CFP for the league revenue.

  • J.A.M.

    …for all you haters Mr Wolf has been spot on all year….where would USC be without next years #1 pick in the NFL….thankfully the UCLA players dont catch that well either….does anyone honestly think Helton will make it past next season without the most talented QB in the nation…2018 is going to be a very very long football season….just sayn…..

    • Tebow_Obama

      Umm…Rosen plays for UCLA.

    • GT

      I honestly think Darnold will come back next year. He is not ready, and I think he knows he is not ready. Doesn’t need to go, and I believe he likes the college experience.

  • Tebow_Obama

    Where’s Gabby…giving Helton a rub down? LOL!

    • 04Trojan

      Get lost. Pud.

      • Pudly76

        F off

        • 04Trojan

          Not you! Tebow!

    • Arturo

      Gab knows what’s up.

  • Linkster

    Well they won. So unbearable though. Props to Rosen. Alas, he is 0-3/vs. USC. If he was USC qb very tough to beat. Sam played well enough to win. That is hIs MO. He is a winner. Trojans once again play down to competition. We need OL, DL, and secondary help in the worst way. Not to mention a head coach. Ugliest 10-2/team in history.

    • Jack B

      I think you might be right. It’s great to be 10-2. One should never look a gift horse in the mouth. But USC truly is the worst, win-ugliest 10-2 team I have ever seen.

      If I didn’t know better, I’d swear USC finished 6-6 this year at best. It’s actually laughable how many brutal mistakes, bad plays, and dumb penalties USC manages to drum up every week.

      We’re just lucky ucla had all those wide open blatant drops. Amazing.

      • Linkster

        I have been watching USC football since 1965 through thick and thin. How this team is 10-2 is way beyond me. It is painful for me to watch. Points out how weak Pac12 is this year. Thank the Lord we won’t be in the playoffs. We would be obliterated. Swann really has his work cut out for him. Hope he has the cajones to do his job.

        • Freddy66

          Problem is gomer helton isn’t going anywhere

        • bb

          Maybe its because he has a sophomore quarterback.

      • JBKayak

        If other teams executed, we would be 6-6. Thank God it’s college football. I’ve seen SC’s opponents get in their own way all season long, with the exception of ND, they executed

  • Don Cooley

    I don’t ever remember feeling this bad after a victory. How is it that this team came out flat against Notre Dame and then came out flat against the ruins.

  • Tebow_Obama

    Trojans sheer talent alone bails out Helton’s terrible coaching yet again.

  • Jeff Morse

    Scoreboard wolfie. 19-2 in last 21 games. Nobody cares until we lose. 19-2 for you. Go cry sour milk. I’m going to party . Fight on Trojan fans

  • Saul Goodman

    Happy we didn’t lose, but that’s about all the positive that can be taken from this game

  • 04Trojan

    Every f’ing game. These should not be this close.

  • EncinitasBruin

    Nice gritty win, and congratulations. Darnold is a heart attack QB. Up and down but keeps beating in the end. Rosen was fun to watch and I’m glad UCLA showed up and despite missing a ton of starters, gave a very good Trojan team a game that wasn’t decided until the last two mnutes. Rosen is ready to go pro, but Sam could use one more year to knock off the rough edges and improve his footwork. Again, nice hard-fought game.

    • Linkster

      Thank you!

    • Pudly76

      We were missing as many or more. Nonetheless, loved the game. The two best QBs in the country in the Coli!

    • Jethro G Sabbath

      I agree completely. It was agonizing to watch as a Trojan fan.

    • Arturo

      Your team represented themselves well; lot of heart.

    • Jack B

      Definitely one of the worst USC/ucla games I have ever witnessed. I don’t know how the fans in the Coliseum, for either side, would have survived it without pills or booze.

      • Arturo

        Both teams played like unseasoned, unpolished and undisciplined teams. It sure does seem like Rosen’s career at UCLA seems like a wasted opportunity.

        • Jack B

          Funny enough, the school he really wanted was STAN and Shaw didn’t like him so never offered and still beat him every year, just like USC did.

          I agree. Rosen chose the wrong school if he cared about wins. If he was always shooting for pure mediocrity, he knew exactly what he was doing.

          • USC jojo

            I think Rosen would have done much better under Shaw’s offense than the two guys Shaw has now. Shaw may not admit it, but he knows it would be true.

          • Jack B

            Shaw didn’t like Rosen’s personality, so he passed.

          • Pudly76

            Shaw knows there’s more to playing qb than just throwing a ball, leadership has always meant a lot to him.

          • Ben Factor

            Which aspects of Rosen indicate to you a lack of leadership qualities?

          • Pudly76

            Body language on the sidelines, showing up receivers on the field by pounding his helmet. Wonder how the nfl receivers he’ll be play with will take to that next year, drops or no. That’s what got Browne benched last year at stanfurd if I remember correctly.

          • Pudly76

            I wonder why mora never let him do interviews.

          • Ben Factor

            Agree totally. But Rosen’s smart and educated parents didn’t instruct their kid to keep his mouth shut when talking to Shaw. Rosen was pressing to start, and Shaw had just developed Luck. Shut up, 17-year-old kid. Play along, and then show Shaw just how great you are. If you ARE great, Shaw won’t let you sit on the bench. Don’t worry.

          • SucKiffin

            Rosen at Stanford would have been sick …

          • Arturo

            Rosen seems like a big fish in a small pond sort of guy. His high school team won a Natty but he wasn’t necessarily the leader of that team.
            They guy can fling it but just doesn’t seem like a future star or someone who could take a team deep into the playoffs at the next level.

          • Ben Factor

            Not to me. He had it in his mind that he wanted to start right away.

          • Paul

            Seriously? He’d be scary behind the SC line. He’ll be all-pro behind a pro line and with pro receivers (who can get separation and catch the ball)

          • Ben Factor

            Well, they say the hindsight portfolio always outperforms.

            I had the same thought about Shaw and Rosen. If Shaw had bent a little and taken Rosen despite Rosen’s presumptuous attitude, STAN would have been a MUCH, MUCH better team.

            If Rosen had shut his mouth and not pressured Shaw about starting as a freshman, Shaw would probably have wanted Rosen to enroll, and Rosen probably would have played as a freshman, or if not, he would have two stellar performance years to bring to the NFL, and have played on very disciplined, better-coached teams.

            Or if Rosen had said, screw it, I’m going to ALA, Alabama would be untouchable.

            The more interesting question is what if Rosen has decided that if he couldn’t attend Stanford, he’d come to USC, where he’d be surrounded by better athletes. Who would be starting? I’m really not sure, but both QBs would probably be better for having competed head-to-head every day.

            If I were Sam D, I’d be mad that the Heltons didn’t advise him how much work his game needed to be truly NFL ready–his throwing platform, his poor decisions about when to play hero ball and when not to do so, etc. He is the poster boy for a Heltons-run program. Inadequate insistence on improvement in technique, on abandoning sandlot play, and on forgetting about the Heisman and spending the entire off-season improving his throwing technique via training from the best guy Sam’s dad could hire. Sam’s great, but he’s raw for a kid with three years at a top program. It’s not fair to him!

            If Swann wants Sam back, and Swann doesn’t have the courage to dump Helton (who Should be dumped), at least Swann should insist on a great QB coach and a new OC, who could take Sam up to high NFL-readiness. Don’t extend C. Helton, because he has shown too little, and relied too much on a Sam’s super talent, without adding much to Sam’s game.

            It’s stunning that Helton would have hired his brother to coach Sam, instead of the very top guy money could buy. In your profession, that would be malpractice, and right on the edge of intentional malpractice.

          • Jack B

            I still love Sam. If he was hitting his long ball, he would have been aces tonight and we win be two scores. But that part of his game has deserted him for now. He should be able to get it back.

          • Ben Factor

            Sam’s GREAT! It’s so obvious how good he is. But every real film watcher says he tries to do too much with his arm, and that his throwing platform is flawed, and he doesn’t exploit the power in his lower body.

            He should have been developed by a top QB coach who insisted on better technique, and less sandlot play. Sam didn’t have all of Rosen’s early advantages, but Sam is at least as talented as Rosen. The Heltons suck as teachers. Period.

          • Jack B

            But with all these USC wins, no matter how ugly, you’ve got to wonder how much change will come with the assts, especially if we somehow win a Fiesta – though after watching the slaphappy Trojans tonight, any future loss would be understandable.

            Just so much mediocrity in the P12. UW was very lucky to escape with a win over UTAH. Everyone is so beatable in the P12. ucla played harder than USC tonight but the Trojans still pulled out a sloppy win. That’s just what we do: win ugly. Even Sam wins ugly.

            It’s still great to be 10-2. Tonight could have easily been a loss but the bruins choked away some huge opportunities. Yet so did the Trojans. It was one of those horribly strange, frustrating games. May the worst team lose.

          • Ben Factor

            Personally, based on the limited info available to me as a outsider, I would not keep CH if I were Swann. I don’t see a great executive/manager in Clay. What IS the argument for keeping him, other than complacency, because he won the P12 South? The team didn’t seem well-coached. Does that count for nothing?

          • 88 Straight

            Shaw made a mistake. It happens. Rosen would have done great behind that line and had 2 outstanding RBs as well.

            Finally, in his 3rd year he had a good QB coach and he is vastly improved from his freshman season. UCLA wasted 3 years.

        • SucKiffin

          That kid can throw some great balls … not so much that dumb EZ pick but he looks NFL good.

    • Sebastian Lane

      Classy move. We were missing a bunch of starters too. But great effort by your lads. Your team came correct…Good luck next week.

    • bb

      He is only a Sophmore.

    • Michael Guarino

      Agree —point for point…..especially that Sam isn’t ready for the NFL. Sure hope he isn’t lured away early —-it could be embarrassing.

    • LamontRaymond

      Agreed on Rosen & Sam. Rosen is an NFL player now, but Sam could use a year of polishing, which is fine…..

      • Jack B

        I think the verdict’s in on Sam. He needs another year in school. His real issue is, does he feel he is receiving the correct coaching, because his game sure doesn’t show it.

        I think he’ll be back. Hopefully, our OL will block better for him next year because this ucla game was just another example of how he is never safe back there and always dodging or on the run.

        • Ben Factor

          I was convinced when Matt Waldman, who watches film for hours on en, said it was obvious that Sam is not ready. (vs. Tee Martin’s self-aggrandizing assessment)

          But why stay to study under the Heltons? They don’t know what to teach you. THAT is the problem. You don’t just get better by more snaps. You get better by eliminating technical problems in your motion, and then by perfecting your judgment by reviewing all the details of what you do with a real real expert, striving to turn you into Brady/Manning/Rodgers/Ben R. The USC staff has no one like that.

          • LamontRaymond

            Helton is a quarterbacks coach by trade..

          • SucKiffin

            He is a career hanger on that choose the profession because his dad was in it

          • disqus_CARwRiuTsK

            just not a good one. and his brother is now the quarterback coach.

          • Ben Factor

            That is true, but I don’t view CH as having developed QB skills very well. Unlike Sam’s recent predecessors, Sam’s talent is VERY strong, and he deserves better coaching than he has received. Unless, perhaps, you have inside info that Sam, in fact, is resistant to changing anything.

        • SucKiffin

          Verdict is Sam better leave or he will drop down the draft faster than Yogi Roth on Sark

      • Ben Factor

        It’s not polishing. He’s all arm. His platform is inconsistent, he squanders his good lower body strength, his feet are too wide and often pointed in the wrong direction. He’s a major talent who needs to be coached by a major talent. If the NFL had a Development League, that would be perfect for him. The Heltons just won’t cut it.

        • Timothy Apple ONLY

          Agree!

      • disqus_CARwRiuTsK

        another year in college will ONLY help him if the coaching improves him. the heltons will not improve him. swann will fix it soon. usc has 2 tough games coming up – wsu and then a bowl game. i doubt they will win both.

    • RegalTrojan

      “NICE” hard-fought game? I’m not so sure about it being “nice” unless you’re trying to be overtly gracious. It was nice not to be upset by a .500 team, though. To be real honest, that was THE most stressful USC-UCLA game I’ve ever watched in my life with the exception of that 13-9 debacle of the last decade. I thought we won because of the superior overall talent level, not because we necessarily played better. Your team definitely had several chances win, but you shot yourself in the foot many times as well.

    • Ben Factor

      Sam needs high quality teaching, not the Heltons.

    • SucKiffin

      Darnold will get worse if he stays with this garbage coaching staff.

    • Steve B.

      You are incorrect. It was a nice gritty loss for the gutty ‘ruins, and whiner Rosen who can’t beat a good team. Stop using the injury excuse. Shows how poorly conditioned their players are or lack of desire to get back on the field. Trojans were missing good players too , and some not at full strength who put it all on the line even though division sewed up already. Do not need your congratulations!

  • bb

    Congrats to Helton on another 10 win season.

    • Pudly76

      Maybe 11 or 12.

    • 04Trojan

      You said it.

    • Fred

      Congrats to Helton for underperforming and not getting to the CFP.

      • bb

        We lost 3 starting lineman to the NFL. If you thought we would be in the CFP you are a poor prognosticator.

        • Fred

          Oh yeah, that’s the reason. So it’s poor coaching. Thanks for confirming that.

  • Saul Goodman

    Anybody else notice that Rosen didn’t throw to #2 while Jones was hurt, but went right back to him for the TD right when Jones got back in the game? Coincidence? I think not (especially considering how good Rosen is).

    • Michael Guarino

      If Helton continues to play Jones, Jones will eventually get him beat. I’m hoping Helton isn’t THAT dumb.

      • trojan_1972

        Hoping Bradford either figures out coaching the secondary, or they find somebody who can.

      • Jack B

        USC has a problem evaluating corners with this staff. Did you see Isaiah Langley try to do the job? He was just another hot lunch. It’s a giant hole on the team.

        • Arturo

          There is talent here in SoCal. UCLA’s DBs looked way better- athletically and technically- than SC’s.

          • Jack B

            True. That’s why I said we haven’t evaluated well. Our CBs lack talent, despite their HS rankings. That was purely evident in watching them try to cover tonight.

            We somehow still won because of special teams I think. It’s always great to beat the bruins, no matter what the score. I said before the game, I’d be happy with a 1-point walk off win. I’m happy! Beating the little gutties never gets old.

          • Arturo

            It seems like a lot of the players that SC offers are players that have done well at their rising stars camps. It isn’t a bad strategy as they are eval them in person. These camps are not in pads and not in game situations, however.
            I liked Jonathan Lockett in high school but Hawkins use to be a CB, Harris was a QB in high school but is an athlete, and the rest of the DBs just look slow.

          • Jack B

            We need a new DB coach and we need some new eyes for evaluation purposes. Shouldn’t be that hard to accomplish, not for a school like USC.

  • David Keeling

    And you wonder why the pollsters don’t give USC more credit in the rankings? USC played like this against W. Michigan. If Helton didn’t have Darnold, he would be nothing more than a 500 coach. Him and his coaching staff. These USC games this year are hard to watch.

  • Sebastian Lane

    It’s a rivalry game. And UCLA has a NFL ready QB. They hit us with their best shot. And how big was that fourth quarter drive? Another example of confirmation bias. SW focuses on the negative to support his theories and ignores the positives. Hilarious

    • Chris

      Couldn’t agree more.

    • JBKayak

      That fourth quarter drive is getting lost. Darnod, if nothing else, is a winner. The only way we lose that game is the onside kick is recovered by Ucla and Rosen runs out the clock and wins the game with Darnold on the sidelines. If Rosen gives the ball back to Darnold with some clock left, Darnold converts to win the game against the weak Bruins D, assuming we can kick a field goal (did we have a FG kicker this game?)

  • Arturo

    Looking up and down the schedule, SC should of had 2 or possibly three more blowouts this year but couldn’t finish teams. I can take 2 or 3 of these real close games a year but all of them seemed to be and they almost left me in cardiac arrest.

  • Pac12 fan

    Stanford doesnt look very impressive still . Hopefully ,we get them

    • trojan_1972

      Ordinarily, I would like to get a rematch against Wazzu. But it would be tough to stomach two losses in one year to them…

    • Pudly76

      Go home

  • 88 Straight

    Congrats on the win.

    • Arturo

      Dude, you make it hard to hate the Bruins. On the real though, UCLA played well tonight. They outplayed SC at virtually every position except RB and maybe LB.
      A lot of questions for you guys- Mora’s futute, who replaces Rosen….

      • 88 Straight

        Once again, too many mistakes. Gave up punt return TD. Missed FG. 2 Turnovers in the red zone. Not a recipe for success.

        I think Modster will be the QB next year. I don’t think Mora is gone unless Cal hammers UCLA. We will have to run the ball next year and play better D. Run D was better tonight.

        • Arturo

          Will always give UCLA credit for never having scheduled an FCS opponent. You guys could easily go the way of Udub and Wazzu and load up on cream puffs and inflate your W-L record. You don’t and your team showed heart. No shame in that.

          • 88 Straight

            A loss is a loss. Simple as that. No FCS for UCLA, SC and ND. I doubt that will change.

        • SucKiffin

          Gomer’s career is going like Mora’s … the chimp had Hundley to carry him , Gomer has Darnold
          Then bottom fell out when they left

          • 88 Straight

            Helton will have better talent. But, he also has a far more demanding AD and fan base.

  • Thinker

    1. Jack Jones is horrible…

    2. Would have been nice to have a time out at end of the first half…but Gomer wasted two of them on 2nd downs when there was no good reason

    3. Penalties

    4. Coaching is horrible…Gomer is in over his head

    • Pudly76

      Forgot for a moment. Thought we won.

      • Thinker

        Sure SC won on the scoreboard against a 5-6 bruin team, but:

        1. Allowed 421 yards passing

        2. Had 115 yards in penalties

        3. Were 2-10 on 3rd down conversions

        4. Only had 153 yards rushing against one of the worst defenses

        Yep, I forgot we won too

        • Pudly76

          Only scoreboard. I don’t go through my life looking for negatives because then that’s all you’ll find. More power to you, but we can all find stats that bend the narrative in any direction you want.

    • Trojan96

      Jack “2 Steps” Jones. That kid is always two steps behind his receivers.

      • Jack B

        I felt sorry for him. Problem is, he’s the best USC’s got and now he makes Grabby look decent. We better play STAN because WSU and Luke Falk could make it another long night for the Trojans.

  • Pudly76

    Y’all the weakest set of fans I’ve heard. If the team was weak as you we’d be ruins. Maybe you should switch colors. The. You’d stop crying. Jeez lueez, the two best QBs in the country played a game and you’re acting like your momma was unfaithful.

  • Old Trojans never die

    A student of the game will tell you that Ucla got away with many more uncalled penalties than USC. You can call it sloppy but it was a win.
    I really believe we need some changes in assistant coaches. The game plan was to keep the ball away from Rosen but the refs kept giving it to him. Incidental contact becomes a big called holding call giving Rosen more downs. The secondary coach is the first out the door. It was crazy watching out of place Dbacks.

    • trojan_1972

      The Rosen 4th and 10 completion featured an obvious – and long – hold by left tackle.

  • Lunderful

    Amazing that a season has passed and I, for one, see no improvement in the teams executions, offense or defence. have we peaked in any regard?

  • RegalTrojan

    A happy loser, huh? That makes you the most boneheaded sucla loser ever! LMFAO!!!

    • Paul

      Nope, bummed. But getting a good laugh from a Clown College idiot.

      • RegalTrojan

        Bummed and psychotic. That’s what you are.

        • GT

          You two sound like a bunch of 5 year olds!

  • Arthur Jury

    We won. It was ugly. Ucla and Rosen are pretty good, next game … end of story.

    • Jack B

      We do seem to bring out the best in people, you must admit. And when they’re done with us, they return to earth.

      We played W MICH, CAL, WSU, TEXAS and ND in particular and after each game, that team was supposedly either very under-rated or awesome. The only team we destroyed, STAN (how did that happen!) is now a real threat again.

      ucla looked much better than their 5-6 record would suggest. How they managed to slow down our running attack was a real shock. They manhandled our OL much of the game. I thought we’d run for 250 at least but fell far short. Strange team. Terrific record.

      • trojan_1972

        I am looking at the line, and thinking “Trojans averaging 40 pounds or more up front”. It didn’t seem to make much of a difference – many rushes netting 3 yards or less. Plus the penalties on the OL….

  • RegalTrojan

    Shoplifters and disabled parking violators.

    • Paul

      Rapists and murderers.

      • RegalTrojan

        As a true gutty institution, it’s YOUR specialty to mass produce them annually. LMFAO!

        • Paul

          Bryce Dixon, Osa Masina, OJ…and that’s just the low hanging fruit

          • RegalTrojan

            Hey guttie, you seem to specialize in discovering all of the American criminals and suspects in crime, why not make a list of the sucla criminals? Oh, don’t forget to include your pud hero John Holmes. Rotfalmao!

          • Paul

            Lol…you should research b.s. like that before embarrassing yourself.

            Chad Wheeler (domestic abuse), Liam Jimmons (pending felony assault), Mark Sanchez (sexual assault)…the list goes on and on

          • RegalTrojan

            How fitting for a little guttie…Keep digging up all the personal records of who you hate. But hey, whose laundry list would be longer? It’s gotta be yours since your pathetic institution manufactures far more undesirables each and every year. LMFAO!!!

  • rusoviet

    Over here in the UK – jus awoke and read on the (imes feed the ‘victory’. Surprisngly the DN still has Saturday’s articles – nothing up yet from either Kaufman or Wolf.
    I’d say further evidence of Helton’s desire but lack of skill. (imes Hefland is fairly confident Darnold will move on rather than endure another year. I’d say the intimation is Helton holding him to garner support through 2018 and w.o. Sam looks rocky at best.
    Papadakis was very hard on Helton in a article from the sj mer-news before this game calling the USC offense reminiscent of C-USA with the coaching staff to back it up.

    • Traveler

      Papadakis was right on the money. Those who missed the interview missed a knowledgable assessment of the state of SC football. Winning “the Helton way” is unimpressive and unsustainable. Expect more losses and blowouts once Darnold has moved on. The boys from kentucky have turned a mercedes benz into a pick-up truck…

      • Pudly76

        Has Petros ever accepted responsibility for this he way his teams played? That team had no internal leadership from captains or seniors and all he ever does is take pride in its demise.

        • trojan_1972

          Yes, that period was near the low point of Trojan football in recent years, perhaps the low point.

          • Pudly76

            Yup. Until he man’s up and accepts his responsibility, he’s got no credibility in my book. How much does he go to practice? But he opined like he lives around campus.

          • NextUp

            Tell us all about your contributions to SC football as a player. Go on….

          • Pudly76

            Or yours? I don’t sit around crying about a team not winning by enough points. He always crying, even when Carroll was winning. Just because he played doesn’t make him right.

          • NextUp

            You’re a pathetic child.

          • Pudly76

            So. Your full of yourself, if people don’t agree you have insult people, sounds like you know childish behavior from your own

          • Pudly76

            You’re just pathetic.

      • Michael Guarino

        Yep. Helton seems almost bent on winning “the unimpressive way.” It’s not intentional, it’s instinctive. But I disagree, in part, on the Darnold assessment. I don’t think coaches can turn a mercedes benz into a pick up truck—-without a little help from the mercedes benz. My guess is– no matter where Sam plays next or how long he plays there— Sam will always be a mixed blessing as quarterback. I don’t think he’ll ever be cured of throwing a red hot ball to a running back who’s 10 feet from him, or not securing the ball when he scrambles or ignoring the wide open receiver once he’s decided to go downfield with the ball. He’ll always be a mix of the good and the bad.
        And I’m sure that’s the way NFL scouts view him.

        • trojan_1972

          Sam’s a package. Part of the package is the improvisation mentality. Pluses and minuses with that, but not the perfect match for NFL.

          • Michael Guarino

            Exactly. They call Sam a ‘gunslinger’ —-but your characterization is more on the money —-Sam is (and always will be) an improviser. Good luck trying to fit him into any current NFL offense. Clay Russell said this a long time ago —-We’re watching a better behaved version of Johnny Manziel. And that kind of football only works in college.

  • Fred

    congrats to Clay for settling on playing down to the level of 5-5 teams.

  • bb

    After losing 3 starting lineman to the NFL and having a sophomore qb the Trojans have overachieved.

  • FGL28

    The goal of the game is to score more points than the other team theTrojans did. The Bruins did not. The defense prevented UCLA from scoring more points. In the end no style points that count are given for a blowout. Scott Wolf hates Helton so regardless of the out come a rain of crap will fall. They win a rain of crap, they lose a rain of crap. This is getting old.

  • Yale O. Leftwich

    Rosen gained more yards and 1st downs than SC, but SC had the trick play ,on the punt return…hope they don’t need it in 2 weeks.SC 2ndary as usual a sieve, but when they put the pressure on it worked,too bad they didn’t do it the whole game. SC ‘O’ line a sieve vs weakest defense in Pac12 south…and that is weak. Mora had UCLA ready to play…congrats to him. SC won congrats on hanging on,barely.

  • elvsd

    Anybody else notice Tommy Trojan looked like Tammy Trojan?

  • Traveler

    You might expect ucla to come out of the tunnel ready to turn up the heat on the hated Trojans. Rivalry games do that. How quickly we forget, this is not the NFL. It’s a game of mood swings and emotion tempered by raw talent – some of it ready for the pros, most of it not.

    I expected a close game, not a blowout. I expected to see an uneven SC performance – flashes of brilliance and sloppy, inept play. I expected more obvious signs that this is a program in the hands of incapable coaches who simply can’t figure out how to prepare the team. I wasn’t surprised.

    For those of us who keep saying, “it’s a win, baby!” it is really important to be honest: it’s also NOT Trojan Football.

    nm.

    • trojan_1972

      Right on the money. This is a great record, but this is definitely NOT Trojan football. Helton is something like 7-9 against ranked teams, Five or so of those losses were not close in any way. Will keep wondering how good this team could be if they could just simply execute – stop the dumb penalties, missed assignments, blown coverage, wasted TOs…

  • GT

    You two sound like a bunch of 4 year olds!

  • disqus_CARwRiuTsK

    the path forward for SC is simple. new coaching staff. get rid of both the Heltons and Tee Martin. Not sure if Pendergast should go or not. get a top flight quarterback coach to help sam get to the next level. and focus on both offensive and defensive lines. and instill some discipline in the players.

  • JPBJR

    Clancy Pendergast should change his last name to “Can’t Defend The Pass”

  • RegalTrojan

    Never mind, guttie. You gutties look like you’re digging the f’g ground in doing anything. LOL!

    • Paul

      I hope for your sake that you’re not as dumb as you sound…

      • RegalTrojan

        I hope for your sake that you’re as dumb as you sound…

  • John Clark

    Re SC coaches. Never have so few done so little with so much.

  • Sylvester

    Sam Darnold is not NFL ready. As ESPN’S Kirk Herbstreit observed, Darnold’s parents need to keep him in school for at least another year. While Sam is a scrambler, he was clearly outclassed in playing ability on Saturday night by UCLA’S Rosen. One of the reason he scrambles so much is because he cannot read defenses as well as Rosen. The play calling is atrocious too, which is a big factor. But, even Matt Leinart admits that he called most plays while he was quarterback. It is unfortunate that the Heltons are involved in the football program. 10-2 record is okay for USC right now. It should be 12-0. Reminds me so much of the Tollner and Hackett days. Enough wins to keep your job, but definitely no confidence in USC fans that we match up to SEC teams. Not sure what was more disappointing – USC barely getting by a horrible UCLA team, or ALABAMA playing Mercer. Lynn Swann really needs to assess the ability and potential of Clay Helton to make USC football relevant, nationally. So many sloppy close wins this season to mediocre teams. Helton has been a part of the football program since 2010 and was assistant to Kiffin and Sarkisian. That same lousy play calling mindset is present and Helton is not creative enough to install confidence in his players or the alumni. This is definitely no time for anyone to consider extending his coaching contract.