And we didn't need Moses.
As I noted last night I think we have our running back. Last night I saw the USC of old when I say old I mean when I was growing up in Los Angeles going to SC games with my dad. To me SC will always be a running team and this recent, I mean in the past 5 years, explosion of a dominant air attack while fun to watch is counter what I grew up with. Don't get me wrong the balanced attack that Pete Carroll and his staff have put together over the years has been nothing short of spectacular but it is different.
Last night brought back a ton of memories. Watching Johnson, Gable, Washington and Havili run wild last night was a treat. And watching the offensive line open up some big holes was even sweeter. That is smash mouth football at its best. Obviously, I'm not the only one who feels that way.
Meanwhile, the Trojans limited the Cornhuskers to 31 yards rushing and intercepted two third-quarter passes that led to touchdowns, turning an 11-point halftime lead into a 32-point margin going into the fourth quarter.
"We owned the line of scrimmage and that was huge for us," said USC Coach Pete Carroll, who celebrated his 56th birthday. "To do that here and to be able to capture the momentum of the stadium and all of that early on and then in the third quarter come ripping out there with a couple turnovers and away it goes -- it's a beautiful thing."
USC's status as the nation's best team was doubted by some after No. 2 Louisiana State, Oklahoma and Florida impressed last week while the Trojans had an open date after a less-than-stirring 38-10 season-opening victory over Idaho.
But USC (2-0) answered with an impressive performance.
Controlling the line of scrimmage was on of my keys to the game and the O line did more control it the dominated it. This is not the same Husker defense that we saw last season and you can already hear the nay sayers that SC dominated a sub par defense so it shouldn't surprise...blah blah blah. I would simply say then why were they ranked at #14? If they were so full of holes why not put them lower.
The rotating running back seems to be working pretty well though I think its clear that Stafon Johnson has emerged as that dominant back that we have been looking for but by no means do I think that we are out of the woods. I would like to see similar performances in weeks to come before I am comfortable. Stanley Havili once again shows why he is so important and just how valuable he is. That run he broke for 50 yards on the very first play was indicative of what we can do when we have a healthy fullback. I was happy to everyone get some carries I was happy to Allen Bradford get some carries as he has been patient and had the right attitude with all the other RB's in the stable.
This is going to sound almost macabre, but the injury to Joseph actually gave SC the necessary time to talk things over and decide to run run run. Joseph is OK with a bruised Larynx but it was a scary moment no doubt.
The passing game is another matter. I think Booty is still trying to get comfortable with his new receivers but I think that will come together in time. Only game experience will get guys on the same page. Practices and scrimmages only give you so much so I'm not going to get to crazy about it. The Offensive Line for all of its questions after losing Ryan Kalil, has done a remarkable job in giving Booty protection and making holes for the running backs and generally playing as unit, especially Kris O'Dowd. He has shown the maturity of a senior with many games under his belt so I'm particularly pleased with where we are on the line.
The defense once again has shown why they are one of the best units in the country. Sedrick Ellis was an absolute MONSTER in this game. The line backers did good job of helping shut down the run and after the second half adjustments were made they also closed down the passing lanes forcing Keller to force plays and we all know that he is prone to make mistakes when forced and make them he did. The CB's and Safeties had an ok game, as Sam Keller was able to pick them apart underneath by dinking and dunking but getting decent yards per play. I have no idea why Callahan once again went back to the run. It seemed like he didn't even make any halftime adjustments to counter what USC was sure to correct after Keller picked at them underneath.
The Nebraska fans were incredible! Loud and crazy they were there for their team but as I noted in my keys to the game SC needed to take them out of the game and take them out they did. But SC came play, they came to dominate and they came to leave no doubt.
They came. They saw. They kicked serious butt.
Veni, vidi, victim.
For the fourth time in five seasons, the Trojans made an early season incursion into a traditional power's territory ... and tore out their hearts. On national television.
This time, it was Nebraska. A proud, history-suffused program with a roaring, capacity crowd to boost the 14th-ranked Cornhuskers.
Put to the sword by the top-ranked Trojans.
USC 49, Nebraska 31 at Memorial Stadium on Saturday, and it wasn't remotely that close.
As in 2003, 2004 and 2006, USC has an early signature victory - a blowout, actually - on its r sum .
The home team is left to deal with the embarrassment of being trashed in its own house.
And the disappointed folks behind the Trojans in the polls (hello, LSU and Oklahoma) have to hope USC fails some other test somewhere down the line because the Trojans just burnished their reputation in an intersectional game before a very large audience.
I will have more on that last paragraph later today.
I would say so.
How about you?