September 12, 2006

Breaking down the USC offense

Who: Southern California Trojans
School Location: Los Angeles, California
School Colors: Cardinal and Gold
2006 Record: 1-0
National Ranking: 3
Conference: Pacific 10

Head Coach: Pete Carroll (Pacific 1973): In sixth season at USC (54-10 overall, 0-0 vs. Nebraska)
Offensive Coordinator: Lane Kiffin

When: Saturday, Sept. 16, 2006, 7 p.m. (CDT)
Where: Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum
Radio: Pinnacle Sports Network.
Series Record: USC leads 1-0-1.

Returning Letter Winners On Offense: 27
Returning Starters On Offense: 4
Base Offensive Formation: Multiple

Field General: Junior John David Booty (6-3, 195) replaces 3,800-yard passer and Heisman Trophy winner Matt Leinert as the Trojans' signal caller. Despite coming off back surgery, Booty earned the starting spot from Mark Sanchez during fall camp. In the Trojans' 50-14 win over Arkansas in their season opener, Booty completed 24-of-35 passes for 261 yards.

Running The Football: Just like the Huskers, USC is utilizing a running back-by-committee philosophy to start the season. Against Arkansas, freshman Emmanuel Moody (6-1, 195), carried the ball seven times for 58 yards, while senior Chauncey Washington (6-1, 220) gained 55 yards on eight carries and freshman C.J Gable (6-1, 190) tallied 51 yards on 12 carries. The Trojans tallied 192 yards rushing against Arkansas.

Catching The Football: USC has one of the top receiving corps in the nation, led by the 1-2 punch of junior Dwayne Jarrett (6-5, 215) and senior Steve Smith (6-0, 200). Jarrett, Smith and junior tight end Fred Davis (6-4, 250) caught five passes a piece against Arkansas for a combined total of 166 yards.

On The Line: The anchors on the Trojan offensive line are left tackle Sam Baker (6-5, 305) and senior center Ryan Kalil (6-3, 285). Senior right tackle Kyle Williams (6-6, 295) and sophomore right guard Chilo Richal (6-5, 300) provide the Trojans with even more size on the line.

Kicking The Football: Junior place kicker Mario Danelo is as reliable as they come. He was perfect on three field goal attempts against the Arkansas, knocking down kicks from 35, 38 and 44 yards out. Eight of his nine kickoffs against the Razorbacks went into the end zone for touchbacks.

Trojan Quick Hits

***Southern Cal is one of the storied programs of college football. The Trojans have won 11 national titles (1928, 1931, 1932, 1939, 1962, 1967, 1972, 1974, 1978, 2003 and 2004). The Trojans did fail in their attempt to three-peat in 2005 when they lost to Texas in the BCS National Championship game in the Rose Bowl.

***Six USC players have won the Heisman Trophy - beginning with current athletic director Mike Garrett, followed by O.J. Simpson, Charles White, Marcus Allen, Carson Palmer and Matt Leinert.

***USC offensive coordinator Lane Kiffin is the son of former Husker assistant coach and current Tampa Bay Buccaneers' defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin.

Southern California Schedule
Sept. 2 - @ Arkansas (W 50-14)
Sept. 16 - Nebraska
Sept. 23 - Arizona
Sept. 30 - @ Washington State
Oct. 7 - Washington
Oct. 14 - Arizona State
Oct. 28 - @ Oregon State
Nov. 4 - @ Stanford
Nov. 11 - Oregon
Nov. 18 - California
Nov. 25 - Notre Dame
Dec. 2 - @ UCLA

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