First, here are my 10 candidates for the UCLA coaching job.
And now on to the USC-UCLA report card:
Sam Darnold was far from perfect and he should not have allowed the clock to expire on his run to end the first half. At the same time, why didn’t USC have any timeouts left? Was that Darnold’s last game at the Coliseum? Clay Helton better hope not.
Ronald Jones, who has gained more yards than LenDale White and Reggie Bush, cannot average more than 4.4 yards per carry against UCLA? But I blame this more on the offensive line than Jones. He usually is ready to play but gets hard-done-by his linemen. And whatever happened to the running back rotation that Clay Helton said was so important? And why not give Stephen Carr a few carries?
Can anyone defend offensive line coach Neil Callaway? The offensive line schemes are pretty bad when USC can’t rush for more than 153 yards against a defense that surrenders 302 yards every game. How many times does it feel like a running back gets the ball and is immediately facing defensive linemen who just slipped past the line schemes? We could talk a lot longer about Chuma Edoga and his personal foul.
They put some pressure on Josh Rosen at key times and Uchenna Nwosu broke up two passes, as usual. Nwosu also was offsides once, as usual.
How many times did UCLA throw a short pass over the middle and get a long gain? I think it’s fair to say sometimes this position gets overlooked for some poor performances.
Instead of getting better, the secondary is getting worse. Jack Jones has given up 4 TDs in the past 2 games and did not want to speak to reporters after the game. He also gave up a 41-yard pass against UCLA. But he isn’t the only one. The fact is every corner is average . . . or worse. But the biggest problem is Clancy Pendergast will not adjust his coverages.
That was a great trick punt return executed by Michael Pittman. But what about the four penalties on special teams including two personal fouls on the kickoff team? That should not be happening in Week 12.
USC committed 11 penalties for 115 yards. How is this happening in the 12th game? When will Clancy Pendergast switch coverages to protect Jack Jones? USC could not run against UCLA! A five-point win over a 16-point underdog?
Clay Helton must make staff changes. Or Lynn Swann must order them in a more likely scenario.
The fans spoke with their silence at the end of the game. Everyone is tired of desultory performances week after week.