Pasadena, Ca – The Cross Town Rivals almost lived up to the hype with the USC Trojans having the last punch 36-14 over the UCLA Bruins.
The Bruins started the game with their emotions high riding the wave of Senior Night. Twenty-four Bruins played their last game at the Rose Bowl in tonight’s game.
USC coach Clay Helton did a great job keeping his team engaged after trailing earlier 14-7 in the second quarter.
Winning their seventh game in a row tonight, may allow the Trojans to crack the top ten on the next poll.
The Trojans running game was solid again gaining 260 yards rushing, with Ronald Jones II gaining 121 yards with two touchdowns. They averaged 4.5 yards per carry, that will allow you to get a first down all night.
Quarterback Sam Darnold looked like a freshman at times, throwing the ball off balance, late across the middle, all passes looking for danger. Darnold did throw for 25/36, 267 yards, 2 touchdowns, 2 interceptions, and two recovered fumbles.
The Bruins bright light early was sophomore wide receiver Jordan Lasley who finished with the teams only scores. Lasley 2 catches for 63 yards, and he even completed one pass for 30 yards on trick play.
Game after game the Bruins running game has been a sight for sore eyes, tonight rushing for 55 yards on 19 carries. 2.9 yards per carry will not cut it in the PAC-12 play.
With tonight’s loss the Bruins fall to 4 – 7 record and mathematically out of a bowl game this season. So younger guys will miss having the extra two weeks of practice a team gets.
Now the Trojans are in the driver seat with a record 8-3, with another rival Norte Dame coming to the Coliseum next Saturday with a 12:30pm kickoff.
They will also need Utah to defeat Colorado next week to allow them to reach the PAC-12 Championship game the will also be decided next week for the North representative Washington/Washington State. Who knew that the Apple Cup would have so much weight.
In USC post game press conference the question came up about scoreboard watching, they answered we just have to take it one game at a time.
Jim Mora and his Bruins will finish the season on the road facing Cal Berkeley Bears.
The Trojans now have won two straight years over the Bruins.