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After a full year of arguing, we will finally have an actual game in which to compare guys at certain positions.
John Boyett (John Boyett for Heisman) or T.J. McDonald—who is the best safety in the land? Career stats for both seniors include 181 unassisted tackles for Boyett against 163 for McDonald; nine interceptions for Boyett against six for McDonald; 101 interception return yards for Boyett against 37 for McDonald.
To me, it seems quite clear who the Pac-12's best safety is, but others disagree. This showdown should settle the question once and for all.
Another battle we've been hearing a lot of hoofing about from the Trojan faithful is their star wide receivers Robert Woods and Marqise Lee versus Oregon's young secondary. Yes, Lee, in particular, burned the Ducks' CBs in 2011. Will it happen again this year?
I honestly don't know. It depends on how much Terrance Mitchell and Troy Hill grew up during the year. And whether the presence of DE Dion Jordan, who didn't play last year, might force Barkley to throw a little quicker lest he become a Jordan pancake.
Perhaps the most important position battle of all might be the kickers. As you will recall, last year's game came down to a missed field goal by Oregon's Alejandro Maldonado. Until my dying day I will say that with Rob Beard kicking that attempt instead of Maldonado, the Ducks win it.
Let's hope it doesn't come down to a lousy field goal again this year.
There are plenty of other position back stories as well: USC O-line versus Oregon D-line and vice versa. Curtis McNeal versus Kenjon Barner and De'Anthony Thomas.
There are some very intriguing matchups in this game that will make it the best game of the year.