Three takeaways from Stanford’s loss to USC

The primary lack of the Troy Taylor period was ugly: the USC Trojans (3-0, 1-0 Pac-12) dominated Stanford (1-1, 0-1 Pac-12) 56-10 on the Los Angeles Coliseum, of their final matchup as Pac-12 foes. 

The Trojans’ explosive offense scored on all however one possession within the first half, serving to construct a 49-3 lead earlier than halftime. 56 whole factors is probably the most Stanford has ever allowed USC. Whereas a loss in opposition to No. 6 USC is under no circumstances an indictment on Taylor, particularly this early in his function, the sport supplied precious insights into Stanford’s soccer program and present workforce.

1. Stanford’s protection seemed porous in opposition to the Trojans’ high-flying assault

There are some gamers on Stanford’s protection with NFL potential, together with sophomore defensive finish David Bailey, however the workforce’s protection doesn’t evaluate to the weapons USC has at its disposal. Trojan receivers Dorian Singer, Mario Williams and Brenden Rice will seemingly hear their title known as throughout subsequent 12 months’s NFL draft. 

Freshman receiver Zachariah Department already appears just like the second coming of Reggie Bush in simply his third school recreation. I’ve not even talked about the previous Heisman winner Caleb Williams, who seemed like some extent guard on turf, distributing the ball rapidly to his playmakers. 

It doesn’t matter what changes Stanford made in final week’s recreation, USC powered by means of with a roaring offense. When Stanford went to dime packages on protection, the Trojans ran the soccer by means of the enamel of the Cardinal protection. When Stanford sat again in zone, USC attacked the protection by means of run-pass choices, flat routes and different Cowl three and Cowl 4 beaters. It didn’t assist that the Cardinal couldn’t draw a move rush. 

Asking any workforce to defend in opposition to USC is a tall activity, however it’s made much more difficult with out equally gifted linemen and defensive backs. With tutorial restrictions that restrict the pool of gamers Stanford can recruit, Taylor should hit on his recruits with a really high-accuracy charge with a purpose to compete with the blue bloods. 

2. The USC protection shut down Stanford TE Ben Yurosek

Coming off a recreation the place he had 9 receptions for 138 yards, it was maybe unsurprising that senior tight finish Ben Yurosek was the primary goal for USC’s sophomore quarterback Ashton Daniels. USC did its homework and the Trojans have been in a position to lock up the six-foot-four tight finish for many of the recreation. Whereas the 242-pound tight finish from Bakersfield, Calif. completed the sport with 4 receptions for 54 yards, that doesn’t inform the entire story. 

From the movie, it seems USC defensive coordinator Alex Grinch known as an aggressive match-up zone that allowed beneath defenders to leap routes, significantly once they have been on Yurosek. The Trojans have been in a position to get their fingers on balls coming Yurosek’s means quite a few occasions and when the tight finish did catch the ball, he was instantly wrapped up by a USC defender. To keep away from a predictable offense, extra receivers should step up when Stanford will get into the thick of convention play.

3. Stanford’s offense appeared much less cohesive with out quarterback Ashton Daniels 

Daniels suffered an damage early within the second quarter, which knocked him out for the remainder of the sport. After Daniels went down, Syracuse switch Justin Lamson took the helm at quarterback. The offense didn’t function as easily with Lamson and the Cardinal lacked a dynamic athlete who might make fast choices. Whereas it’s unfair to check Lamson’s efficiency in opposition to a top-ten workforce to Daniels’s efficiency in opposition to a G5 workforce, the movie makes it clear that Stanford’s gear is totally different when Daniels is within the recreation. 

Lamson had some promising moments, together with just a few bold performs to convey the Cardinal into field-goal vary quite a few occasions. However he was unable to attain in lots of these drives.

Will probably be attention-grabbing to look at how Taylor’s play calling will change to guard Daniels from additional publicity to damage.

The Cardinal hosts its first dwelling recreation on Sept. 16, because it takes on Taylor’s former workforce Sacramento State (2-0, 0-0 Massive Sky).