10 Things USC Needs To Do To Beat Utah
1.) Stop looking dumbfounded
Have you seen Clay Helton’s expression on the sidelines during recent games? He looks completely befuddled. If he does not know what is going on, he needs to hire some assistant coaches who do. Right now, he is low on those.
2.) Get on the same page
How does USC have two wide receivers run into each other on two different plays? The level of disorganization within the program is staggering.
3.) Hire someone who can count
USC had a 12 men on the field penalty. It also called timeout when it had 10 men on the field. It had nine men on the field against Arizona. Maybe one of the 50 support staff people can be used to make sure there are always 12 players on the field.
4.) Discipline? What discipline?
Iman Marshall has had four pass interference penalties in two games. Ajene Harris had two penalties vs. Colorado. They are seniors. It’s too late to instill discipline. What has Clay Helton been doing in this dept. for three years? Nothing.
5.) Get JT Daniels in the weightroom
He needs to get stronger so he can take a hit without limping afterward. And so he won’t underthrow receivers off his back foot.
6.) Don’t worry about “stars”
USC needs to just play and not worry whether Porter Gustin or Cameron Smith is in the lineup. Pete Carroll had a “next man up” philosophy so when someone got hurt, it didn’t even faze the team.
7.) Run the ball
I can never tell what the game plan is with USC. The Trojans could not run against Colorado but they also don’t seem to know if they want to run. And who do they want to run? The tailback-by-committee approach is getting confusing, which makes it tough to get in a rhythm.
8.) Stop babying the players
We all know there is no discipline. But everyone inside the program complains that players run things. When do players get removed from a game for committing a penalty?
It’s too late, probably, to turn this around but does Lynn Swann care? He is aware of it.
9.) Stop pretending the Pac-12 South matters
Clay Helton keeps talking about winning the Pac-12 South. It’s one of the worst divisions in the nation. USC doesn’t even play Oregon or Washington. Winning the Pac-12 South should be a foregone conclusion. Helton needs a lesson from Willie McGinest or someone on what really matters to USC fans and former players: national titles!
10.) Recruit more defensive backs
USC has three safeties back next season and loses Marshall and Harris. But it will probably keep recruiting more wide receivers instead. Somebody better wake up and recruit more defensive backs, especially with Chris Steele decommiting.