by James Ellis
USC really needed a bounce back week after their disastrous performance against the Texas Longhorns last week, but through the first half it looked as if Mike Leach and his boys were having their way with the Trojans.
Gardner Minshew and the rest of those Cougars were getting everything they wanted and more leading the Trojans at halftime 24-17, and it did not look like the Trojans had learned anything at halftime when Max Borghi ran in for a 13 yard touchdown with 10:21 left to go in the 3rd Quarter.
USC needed a jolt of momentum, and they seemed to get it when Michael Pittman Jr. caught a pass from Daniels and ran 50 yards for a score. Suddenly it looked as if the Trojans had turned a corner as J.T. Daniels just seemed like a different quarterback in the second half, throwing a beautiful 30 yard touch pass to Amon-Ra St. Brown. Even though Washington State came back with a score of their own, it just seemed as if the Trojans really were not going to let another win slip out of their fingertips tonight, as Vavae Malepeai scampered into the end zone with eight minutes to go in the game. But one things about those Cougars is that they do not stop until that final whistle is blown.
When they got the ball back for the last time, they were on their own 26 yard line. Play-by-play, and yard-by-yard the Cougars pushed all the way to the USC 21 yard line, and it seemed as if this game was just destined to go into overtime. The Trojans and Jay Tufele had other ideas though, as he just blitzed through the Washington State line on a field goal attempt and stuck those two big hands of his high in the air and was able to tip the ball and essentially end the game.
Even though a win was exactly what these Trojans needed, there is still plenty of work to be done. They will breathe a temporary sigh of relief before moving on to our matchup with Khalil Tate and the Arizona Wildcats next week, and hope that the Trojans learned a few lessons tonight in their battle, and narrow victory against the Washington State Cougars.