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Arizona Week! Nick Foles looks to repeat, The UA defense has some issues

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Well, USC has lost to three of the four teams that beat us in 2009. The fourth of course was Arizona and they're up this week.

So lets take a quick look at the 'Cats

Of course the local outlets are already writing us off..

USC is about to find out just how far it has fallen.

The Trojans, trying to avoid their worst season in a decade or more, will be tested over the next two weeks, with two games on the road at hostile environments against solid Pac-10 teams. First up is No. 18 Arizona, coming off a blowout loss at Stanford, before the Trojans travel to Oregon State.

USC has lost two of its last four games against Oregon State and got beat 21-17 by Arizona in the Coliseum last year.

Every time Arizona plays in a program-defining game, it seems to lose. But you have to realize where things stood when Mike Stoops took over six years ago.

Well, I would like to think that we have made some progress from earlier in the season, but I am an optimist.

Arizona has had a pretty good season so far but they have some weaknesses. They were taken to the woodshed by Stanford. That game wasn't even close so while everyone wants to give Arizona some props lets not get ahead of ourselves. UA finished second in the conference last season, they won't finish that high this season...probably third. They finally got the USC monkey of their back last season under Mike Stoops only to get blasted by Nebraska.

The key of course is QB Nick Foles.

He is the glue that keeps the team together and he has looked good at times this season. He suffered a knee injury a couple of weeks ago but played in the Stanford game and wasn't effective like we would expect for all the hype. Foles went 28 of 48 for 240+ yards 0 TD 1 INT. Average numbers when there are no TD's.

But he can still burn you and Kiffin is not taking Foles for granted...

Foles, who returned last week after sitting out two games because of a dislocated kneecap, remains the key to a passing attack that has averaged 294.8 yards per game.

"He's a guy that, almost every game it feels like you watch, he's completing 75% of his passes," USC Coach Lane Kiffin said Monday.

Foles, ranked 30th nationally in passing efficiency, has completed 71.9% of his attempts, a percentage second only to Northwestern's Dan Persa (73.4%) and just ahead of Boise State's Kellen Moore (71.8%).

Foles has passed for 10 touchdowns with six interceptions in seven games. Against Stanford, he completed 28 of 48 passes for 248 yards and a touchdown with one interception.

Last season against the Trojans, Foles was 22 of 40 for 239 yards. He ran for a touchdown and threw a fourth-quarter touchdown pass to receiver Juron Criner that gave the Wildcats a come-from-behind victory.

He beat us, no doubt about it.

We have some of the same defensive issues, or worse depending on whom you read, as last year so this game isn't going to be a cakewalk especially with the game in Tuscon. Foles could hurt us if we don't play a solid game.

Arizona's defense has been one of the better units this season but they looked pedestrian against Stanford...

The UA's pass defense has become perfectly average after a strong start to the season. The Wildcats (7-2, 4-2) are 60th out of 120 schools nationally when it comes to opponents' quarterback rating, 125.56. They're allowing 209 passing yards per game, the 49th-best mark in the nation.


Coaches benched the junior for true freshman Shaquille Richardson shortly after Wade got beat by Cardinal receiver Chris Owusu for a 45-yard touchdown pass in the first quarter of Saturday's blowout.
"It just hasn't been a typical year for him," UA coach Mike Stoops said Monday.

Matt Barkley and the USC offense have a chance to turn it around his week and take advantage of UA's defensive struggles.

We can beat these guys if the offense is clicking. Barkley has to play better, simple as that.

It can be done but it won't be easy...Mike Stoops has mis-managed games before so Kiffin needs to be on his toes to take advantage of those miscues.

It is going to be an interesting game...