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The USC Secondary...We're Waiting

In my initial review of the Arizona game I was concerned that a new and inexperienced USC offense going up against an older and more experienced Arizona defense playing in Tucson was a potential loss waiting to happen. I don't think Arizona knew what hit them in the LSU game. And that loss was telling.

On the other side, USC has had some convincing wins, though I think we would agree that the Nebraska win was a bit sloppy. The running game was a little sluggish due to the tough Nebraska defensive front. We also really didn't see the secondary tested as we thought we would so there are still some questions there. From Gary Klein at the LA Times:

Members of the Trojans' young secondary, along with much of the sellout crowd at the Coliseum and a national television audience, anxiously waited for the supposedly balanced Cornhuskers to unleash a passing attack.

"I guess they were trying to lure us to sleep," USC cornerback Terrell Thomas said.

Nebraska, however, never delivered a wake-up call.

Despite an ineffective running game and mounting scoreboard deficit, the Cornhuskers threw the ball only 17 times against a Trojans defense depending on Taylor Mays, a freshman safety making his first start.

Nebraska's passive passing game disappointed members of a secondary eager to show they should not be considered a weak link in a defense that has mostly dominated in victories over Arkansas and Nebraska.

"A quiet game is a good game for a corner but it gets a little frustrating," said sophomore cornerback Cary Harris, who was also making his first start.

At some point the Trojans secondary is going to be tested. This is probably the week that that happens. With AZ QB Willie Tuitama back in the line-up this Saturday and you can guarantee that he will put it up top to try and find WR's Syndric Steptoe and Michael Thomas to try and see if he can exploit the USC secondary. Tuitama definitely has the skills and he showed them off in Arizona's rout of UCLA last year. He missed most of the LSU game due to a concussion and he didn't play until the 4th qtr. of last week's game against Div.1-AA Stephen F. Austin so he will be ready to go against the Trojans this weekend.