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Midcourt: USC vs. Rider Open Thread

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Normally, a Wednesday night showdown with an unheralded Rider team wouldn't be anything of note, but nonetheless, a win for USC would mark the school's first 3-0 start since the 2000-2001 season, in which the Henry Bibby-coached Trojans began the year 8-0 before eventually embarking on a dramatic Elite Eight run.

Comparisons to the Sam Clancy years, however, may be premature, particularly in light of the fact that Rider represents USC's toughest test of the season thus far, and a victory is everything but guaranteed. For starters, the Broncos return four starters from a team that finished 16-15 a year ago, and in their latest outing against Lafeyette, they amassed a total of 80 points. They can score, which could be all the more damaging considering the fractured left hand of Alex Stepheson. Defense will have to be a priority.

But while stopping the offense for a Rider team, which defeated Mississippi State a season ago, remains atop the "to do list" for Kevin O'Neill, it's not exactly something that we, as fans, are particularly eager to delve into.

Instead, there are few more flashy topics to point out: Maurice Jones scoring 29-points against Santa Clara, Nikola Vucevic recording double-doubles in both games and how irritating Donte Smith can be to watch (note: Smith went 2-of-8 on 3-pointers against UC Irvine). Or, perhaps, how the Trojans scored 47-points in the second half against SCU - more than they scored in any half last season.

As expected, tonight's game will not be televised, so unless you're planning on attending or watching on USC All-Access, you're, in all likelihood, out of luck once again. I, however, will be in attendance and tweeting once again, so if you you're clamoring for updates and ill-timed jokes, click on the link to follow along.

FIGHT ON!