After jumping back into the top 25 in the college football rankings, the USC Trojans are heading into a much anticipated matchup against the fourth ranked Washington Huskies. This game has a lot of Pac-12 tittle implications, in which USC needs to win the rest of their games and get help from some other teams. Washington has one of the best balanced teams in the country so USC will need an amazing performance from both sides of the football.
Adoree’ Jackson vs John Ross
Washington Wide Receiver John Ross is one of the most explosive players in the country and will be a main focus for the USC defense. Ross is second in the nation in touchdown catches with 14 and second in the Pac-12 in receiving yards with 742. Last week in their win over Cal, Ross caught six passes for 208 yards and scored three touchdowns. He is an explosive athlete who can stretch the field and make defenders look silly. USC has the perfect corner who is up for the task: Adoree’ Jackson. The multi-sport star can make plays at three different positions. He has evolved into a shutdown corner and has taken on a number of talented receivers this year. This will be a matchup of elite speed so big plays are always bound to happen.
Ronald Jones vs Washington’s Front Seven
One of the hottest running backs in the last couple weeks is USC’s Ronald Jones. After running for a school record of 223 yards against Cal, Jones followed that performance with 171 yards and four touchdowns, which tied a school record, against Oregon. The sophomore has taken advantage of his increased playing time due to injuries to Justin Davis and Aca’Cedric Ware. Jones is an explosive back who has showed improvement running in between the tackles. Once he gets to the second level, he is hard to stop. Washington’s defense will have its work cut for them as they give up 147.9 rushing yards per game but are in the ranked first in the nation in turnover margin at +1.7 and second in fumble recoveries with 12. The Huskies will look to linebackers Victor Azeem and Keishawn Bierria to contain Jones and company.
USC Wide Receivers vs Washington Defensive Backs
The Trojans wide receiving unit is as deep as any in the country. Led by All-American Juju Smith-Schuster, USC have a number of athletes on the outside who can make plays. Sophomore Deontay Burnett stepped up and had a solid game against Oregon with seven catches for 87 yards and one touchdown. With Freshman Michael Pittman Jr and Senior Darreus Rodgers, this group is stacked and ready to compete against the best. Washington has one of the best secondaries in the nation however. Sidney Jones was an All-American last year as he led the Pac-12 in pass break-ups with 14. Kevin King is a 6-3 cornerback who has a lot of range and can matchup with any big receiver. Safety Budda Baker is hard hitting safety who also excels in pass coverage. This will be a physical matchup as USC will need there receivers to help out quarterback Sam Darnold big time.
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