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(USC football 2017) Winning 3rd down on Day 3 of Fall Camp

The USC Trojans continue to prepare for the 2017 football season.

NCAA Football: Southern California Spring Game Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

USC Trojans football coach Clay Helton has always placed an emphasis on situational football. In any given game of college football there usually is a point in the contest in which your team simply must execute if they want to win. One of those situations is third downs. Getting off the field on third down on defense, and keeping drives going by converting third downs are critical to winning.

On day three of fall camp the Trojans worked on third down situations on both sides of the ball. Last season the USC offense was 11th in the nation in third down conversion percentage and the defense was 29th. Helton would love to improve both of those rankings in order for the Trojans to meet their season goals.

Running Backs are making an impact in the passing game:

Coach Helton stated that they want to get the running backs more involved in the passing game as receiving targets. As loaded as the Trojans are at wide receiver having running backs who can also be receiving targets adds an extra element that defenses will have to account for. Quick passes to the running backs can also be a great way to counteract pressure from the defensive front which could help alleviate some of the stress on an offensive line unit that still has not quite figured out the right combination. Ronald Jones II, Vavae Malepeai, and Freshman Stephen Carr all appeared to be viable weapons out of the backfield.

USC Football - 2017 Fall Camp #3: Clay Helton

USC Trojans football Injury Report:

Questionable but being treating overly cautiously: WR Keyshawn “Pie” Young (hamstring, injured Wednesday August 2nd) OL Viane Talamaivao (elbow/ rolled ankle on Monday) OL Alijah Vera-Tucker (hamstring), OL Frank Martin (hamstring)

Out: S Matt Lopes (toe) projected to miss about about a week

Limited as a precaution: OL Toa Lobendahn (knee), TE Daniel Imatorbhebhe (hip flexor,

Out for camp: CB Jonathan Lockett (hip) expected to miss significant time, LB Tayler Katoa (knee) out for the season, OT Nathan Smith (knee)

USC defensive coordinator Clancy Pendergast interview from InsideTroy on YouTube: