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Inside the Pac-12


September 20, 2009 6:03 AM

UW Proves Trojans Lack Playmakers

Before today’s 16-13 loss to the Huskies, a lot of people thought that QB Aaron Corp would be allowed to throw the ball more than Matt Barkley did at Ohio State. Corp finished the game 13/22 for 110 passing yards, 1 INT and only 5 yards per completion. Head Coach Steve Sarkisian and defensive coordinator Nick Holt were familiar with all things USC, but Washington does not have the talent that the Trojans possess and this game should not have been close. The one position that matters is the one that the Huskies had an advantage at and that is the QB position. QB Jake Locker went 21/35, threw for 237 yards and no turnovers.

It is very hard to ignore the turnover margin, which was 3-0 in favor of UW, but the Trojans couldn’t get anything going with the passing game for the second week in a row. Joe McKnight is not a huge part of the passing game despite USC’s plan to utilize him the same way that they used Reggie Bush. McKnight finished the game with three receptions for six yards. McKnight only touched the ball a total of 14 times. Steve Sarkisian found a way to get the ball to his RB Chris Polk 28 times. Pete Carroll continues to lose quality coaches and it might finally be catching up to the USC program.

Despite the loss of WR Ronald Johnson, USC still has WR Damian Williams, FB Stanley Havili and the under utilized Joe McKnight that should be making an impact in the passing game. Nine different players caught passes for the Washington Huskies. Freshman WR James Johnson finished the game with seven catches for 72 yards for UW. The one stat that contributed to the Trojan loss was going 0/10 on third down conversions.

Pete Carroll has to get his offensive coaches going in the right direction. USC plays at California and at Notre Dame in October and the 15.5 points the Trojans have averaged over the last two games will not be enough to beat those teams. As good as USC recruits RB’s and defensive players they have not reeled in an abundance of talent at the WR position and it will be interesting to see if they address this problem this recruiting season.

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