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Game Notes: Buck Allen Beast Mode Not Enough

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Notes and tidbits from Saturday's heartbreaker.

Nelson Agholor is now tied for the USC punt return record.
Nelson Agholor is now tied for the USC punt return record.
Shotgun Spratling/Conquest Chronicles

The USC Trojans fell 38-34 to Arizona State Saturday night at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum thanks to a Jaelen Strong Hail Mary catch as time expired. Buck Allen had 143 yards rushing and two touchdowns as well as 86 yards receiving, but it wasn't enough for the Trojans.

Here's some interesting game notes from the USC vs. Arizona State matchup:

  • Cody Kessler finished 28-for-45 for a 62.2 completion percentage. That dropped his season completion percentage to 69.5 percent, which is still good enough for seventh best in the nation. UCLA's Brett Hundley overtook last week's leader Oregon's Marcus Mariota and has the country's best completion percentage at 72.8 percent.
  • Quarterback Cody Kessler, who punted in high school, kicked his first four career punts on Saturday. He punted for 135 yards or a 33.8-yard average. One of his punts was downed inside the 20, but two went for touchbacks and his final one traveled only 15 yards.
    Cody Kessler punting

    Cody Kessler does a quick kick punt against Arizona State. (Shotgun Spratling/Conquest Chronicles)

  • Cody Kessler has now thrown 177 pass attempts this season. He still has not thrown an interception.
  • USC is one of four teams that has not thrown an interception this season. Washington and Oregon have also yet to throw an INT.
  • The Trojans have only turned the ball over twice this season -- second-best in the nation behind Washington.
  • Kevon Seymour broke up three passes and is now 12th in the nation, averaging 1.6 passes defended per game. Of course, he'd sure like back his attempt to defend the pass to Cameron Smith late in the fourth quarter that went for a 73-yard touchdown.
  • Su'a Cravens had 3.5 tackles for loss in the first quarter, including his second career sack. He is now fifth in the nation, averaging 1.7 tackles for loss per game.
  • Su'a Cravens tackle for loss.

    Su'a Cravens tackles ASU running back D.J. Foster in the backfield. (Shotgun Spratling/Conquest Chronicles)

  • Though it didn't cause any turnovers on Saturday, USC still has the sixth-best turnover margin in the nation at +1.40 per game.
  • The USC defense is holding teams to a 25.4 percent third-down conversion rate, which is fourth-best in the country. Arizona State was 3-of-12 on third down.
  • USC had not allowed a passing touchdown this season, Arizona State carved them up for five touchdowns and 510 yards.
  • Kris Albarado had a career-long 65 yard punt in the first quarter and finished with a 59.5-yard average.

    Kris Albarado punt

    Kris Albarado unleashes a punt. (Shotgun Spratling/Conquest Chronicles)

  • Redshirt freshman Steven Mitchell, who saw extended playing time with Ajene Harris out, had his first career reception in the third quarter.
  • Buck Allen's 143 yards rushing gave him his fourth 100+ yard rushing performance this season. He also has a 100+ yard receiving effort.
  • Buck Allen leads the Pac-12 with 576 yards rushing and 115.2 yards rushing per game.
    Buck Allen touchdown run.

    Buck Allen takes a 53-yard touchdown to the house. (Shotgun Spratling/Conquest Chronicles)

  • Junior Nelson Agholor returned a first quarter punt 53 yards for a touchdown. It was his third career punt return for a touchdown, tying him with Mike BattleJim SearsR. Jay Soward and Reggie Bush for the USC school record.
  • Nelson Agholor also tied his career-high with nine catches. He finished with 85 yards receiving and 147 all-purpose yards.
  • Speaking of all-purpose yards, Buck Allen had 229 on the day and is now seventh in the nation, averaging 165.2 yards.
  • Arizona State running back D.J. Foster is just ahead of Allen, averaging 166.6 all-purpose yards per game, but the USC defense held him to 13 yards rushing and 73 yards receiving.
    D.J. Foster bottled up.

    Gerald Bowman and Hayes Pullard bottle up D.J. Foster. (Shotgun Spratling/Conquest Chronicles)

  • Arizona State snapped its losing streak at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum continued. The Sun Devils hadn't beaten USC since 1999.
  • USC didn't commit a turnover for the fourth straight game for the first time since 1995. However, the Trojans are just 2-2 in the last four games.
  • Former USC quarterback Rodney Peete led the Trojans out of the tunnel.
  • Rodney Peete leads the Trojans.

    Rodney Peete leads the way. (Shotgun Spratling/Conquest Chronicles)

  • Former Trojan linebacker Tony Burnett was also in attendance in the end zone suites and was featured on the Jumbotron.
  • USC probably wouldn't mind having any of the former players that have attended games this season back in uniform since they suited up only 55 recruited scholarship athletes on Saturday.
  • During a timeout in the first quarter, two members of the NHL Champion Los Angeles Kings, C Jeff Carter and RW Marian Gaborik, brought the Stanley Cup trophy onto the field.
    Stanley Cup at USC football

    Jeff Carter and Marian Gaborik present the Stanley Cup. (Shotgun Spratling/Conquest Chronicles)