Coach Sarkisian and the Trojans are no stranger to adversity. Sarkisian has faced adversity since he took over this program and was named head coach in December of 2013, after coach Lane Kiffin was fired. Sarkisian took a shaky and soul searching Trojan team that many doubted will ever relive their glory days. Sarkisian has led the Trojans in the right direction, as they went 9-4 including a Holiday Bowl win over Nebraska last year. The Trojans now come into the 2015-2016 season with high hopes of facing another challenge: winning the Pac-12 title.
With the Trojans winning some quite impressive games in the 2014 season, a loss to Boston College and three conference losses cost the Trojans a shot at the Pac 12 title along with a big bowl game. With the Trojans losing to UCLA, Utah, and last second to Arizona State, the Trojans went from being a #16 team to #24 at the end of the season. That gave the Bruins, Sun Devils, and Wildcats (who they beat) to sit comfortably ahead of the Trojans in the Pac-12 south. Meanwhile Oregon dominated the Pac-12 North, giving the likes of Stanford and Washington no chances of competing. Now the Trojans are entering the 2015 season with vengeance, hoping to take back Los Angeles and the Pac-12.
The Trojans also have a really good chance at being a powerhouse in the Pac. With critical losses at the quarterback position for both the Ducks and Bruins, the Trojans can redeem themselves against two highly ranked teams. USC has a Heisman candidate in quarterback Cody Kessler, who threw for 3,826 yards and 39 touchdowns along with only 5 interceptions.
The Trojans have electrifying playmakers in Adoree Jackson and JuJu Smith on the receiving end that will continue to connect with Kessler in the end zone. USC's defense showcases a physical and hard-hitting group with Su'a Cravens at strongside linebacker and Antwaun Woods plugging the middle of that Trojans' interior line.
The Trojans will be looking forward to making a statement against Arkansas State at home Saturday, September 5th. Two weeks from then the Trojans will face their first big test against rival Stanford and then redeeming themselves against Arizona State in Tempe.
Be on the lookout this season as the Trojans announced kick off times and TV plans for 6 big games including Notre Dame, Stanford, and Washington. The Trojans are here to win and will open eyes this upcoming season.