by Pete Arbogast, the voice of the Trojans
I’m not sure how much stock to put in the huge win at ASU, but here are a few observations off the cuff:
Backs to the wall in a place where SC has not done well lately, and the team came through with a big win. That’s good. Goodness knows what would be happening right now if this did not happen.
Kessler continues to be really efficient. Ronald Jones is our best running back. JuJu is obviously the go-to guy. And Adoree’ Jackson is as exciting a multi-talented player as maybe we have EVER seen at SC. He should be in the Heisman discussion.
Arizona State is not as good as they were last year—and keep in mind SC rather dominated that game last year against the Devils until the last few minutes. Their radio guys intimated before and certainly after the game that this might be a long year.
Our defense was better, and more active. Many of the rushing yards given up were during garbage time. It was a certain step forward.
ASU did nothing to keep SC from pouring it on. Turnovers here, there and everywhere. Same as Arizona did for UCLA and both LA teams took full advantage of the opportunities.
SC could have scored on their first drive….ASU as well. ASU missed a couple of not-that-tough field goals. Plattenburg’s pick shut down another ASU drive.
Of course there was the fumble return when ASU was going in for a score. And if they score, they get the ball back to start the second half, and if they score there it’s 21-14 instead of 35-0 and the crowd has not already gone home at half time.
That play did not shock me as much as the one at ND a few years ago—that came out of nowhere—but once you see it once, you think in the back of your head “it could happen again, so be ready”, and I was.
What I’m saying is: The SC defense forced turnovers, that turned the game around, and ASU may not have been as bad as the score ended up.
And I like our chances with Washington.
Are you hoping ND is unbeaten when we go to South Bend, or that they get clubbed this weekend in Death Valley?
Man, it was hot down there, windows open and fan on, it was fully 95 at kickoff in the dark. They’re having a string of 25 straight days over 100 in the day.
So now we become ASU fans, especially this week.
Got the stadium early Saturday and sat around with spotter and stats guy Burt and Hoppe just yakking about nothing. It’s a rare time we are found outside the booth all three of us together. We watched the Ucla game until we couldn’t take it anymore.
The Dodgers are going to blow this thing, aren’t they? And the Angels have at least kept it interesting.
Have a good bye week.