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WeAreSC Mailbag (11-10 edition)

by Garry Paskwietz

In this week’s edition of the mailbag we discuss the rotation on the DL if Stevie T cannot go, the legitimacy of the Washington schedule, and the potential for more Adoree’ on offense:

Big daddy

Michigan has said no to Friday football games. Other schools in the Big 10 (14) have also started to decline or limit games being played midweek. What would it take for USC to do something like this? Would it be up to the President, BOT, AD, some combination of this? Thanks

My guess is that the athletic director would lead the way on this one with the President and BOT having knowledge of it. And count me as one who would love to see it happen. USC has every bit the standing to say no as Michigan does, not to mention the practical issues of getting to downtown LA on a weeknight.


In your opinion, what is the number one key for a USC victory Saturday?

Sam Darnold. His impact has been the biggest wild card for this recent Trojan resurgence and we’ll probably need to see more of the same if there is going to be a USC win. Not only will he need to have success throwing the ball against a very good UW secondary but I also think we will see him do some things running the ball. And as much as anything he will need to keep his composure in that setting, even if there is some adversity, but his mental make-up is one of the strongest parts of his game so I think he will be fine in that regard.


With Stevie likely out for Saturday’s game (or, best case scenario, limited), what is our rotation at defensive tackle going to look like?

At this point I’m optimistic about Stevie T being able to play a role, but it obviously remains to be seen how much of one. The first guy up in his place would be Josh Fatu (photo above), who would pair with Rasheem Green if the Trojans are going with two interior linemen. In a three-lineman set, we saw Jacob Daniel come in at nose, with Green and Fatu flanking him on either side.

Helen of Troy

It’s working so why stop? So here goes….

Are we going to win?



Washington’s schedule has been pretty weak thus far. Are they legit legit, or just legit?

It’s a fair question. I completely respect what Washington has done this year and they are a very solid football team, but if there are questions about who the Trojans have beat (and they are also fair questions) then those same questions need to be applied to Washington. They hung their hat early on victories over Stanford and Oregon that may not look as impressive in hindsight, and this game offers far and away the best opportunity for the Huskies to legitimize their #4 CFP ranking, not to mention keep their hopes alive for that playoff. 


I feel this is the first game that USC DB’s will need to defend two very good receivers, as opposed to just one, where Adoree will take the lead. Will CCP dial up some help for Iman Marshall for the deep routes? Iman has shown his weakness after so many weeks, that being go routes, deep posts type plays.

The first question is how healthy will Iman be with his hamstring. He got in more work during the Wednesday practice than he did on Tuesday but it was still Jackie Jones who went with the 1’s during the majority of the day. But to your point about the test of covering two good Washington receivers, I agree and I think it’s a great match-up to watch, especially since Clancy loves to have his corners in man-to-man cover situations. He certainly could adjust to help if something isn’t working but for the most part we should have plenty of chances (on both sides of the ball) to watch some real competitive WR-DB battles in this game.


Hi Garry, well we only get to see Adoree, a truly special player, for a few more games in an SC uniform. This is sad, but not Hillary Clinton sad. Last game, I loved the way he was used on offense, if only as a decoy. My question is, since we only have three more regular season games, isn’t it time on offense to actually give him the football more? If not now, when?

I wouldn’t rule it out in this game with the fact that Deontay Burnett missed practice on Wednesday with a knee issue. If Deontay is at all limited, I wouldn’t hesitate to get Adoree’ more reps in the slot. And even if Deontay does go, I would still look to get Adoree’ involved in some way. As you say, we haven’t really used him a lot on offense so he hasn’t been overworked, and this isn’t a game where Washington runs a ton of plays (they average 68) so he shouldn’t be stretched thin on defense. And as much as any game remaining on the schedule this one figures to be close enough where a little splash of Adoree’ on offense could be a difference.


Are we going to see more Jacob Daniel in this game? Will we see more of a “base set” with 3 down linemen, 2 DT and a NT?

I think so. Jacob got a lot of work in practice this week and Helton commented about the improvement he has made lately in practice. It would be timely progress because Jacob offers a big-body option and the Trojans need all of those they can get on the d-line. We will probably see the 2 down and 3 down sets in almost similar numbers as Washington is known for being an extremely balanced team.


Will we see more use of FB?

I don’t think we will see a lot more but this is a game where it does make sense that we would see him in there. The Huskies have a trio of 300-pounders on the defensive line and a pair of aggressive linebackers so if the Trojans are going to run the ball it could be a good option to use Peters.

Garry Paskwietz
Garry Paskwietz

A 1988 graduate of USC with a degree in Sports Information. Worked in sports marketing for LA Lakers and Miller Brewing Company. Began covering the Trojans in 1996 with the Trojan Football Fax. Founded WeAreSC in November 1998 with stints at Scout and ESPN. Emmy-winner while covering high school football at Fox Sports West.

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