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USC vs. Syracuse: Complete Game Preview

Amy LamareSenior Analyst ISeptember 5, 2012

USC vs. Syracuse: Complete Game Preview

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    USC heads to New Jersey to face off against the Syracuse Orange in this week's two non-conference matchup. Otto the Orange will be fodder for Trojan fans’ mimosas once the men of Troy get done with him. 

    Saturday afternoon will mark the first time USC has played at MetLife Stadium in New Jersey. The game is being publicized as the inaugural “New York’s College Classic.”

    This is the second consecutive year the two teams face off, with the Trojans emerging victorious in 2011 by a score of 38-17 at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum.

    Back in 1990, the Kickoff Classic featured these two schools against each other at the Meadowlands in a game that the Trojans won easily, 34-16.

    This is the fourth meeting between USC and Syracuse, and USC holds the series edge, having won the three previous contests by at least 18 points. 

    Technically this game is considered a neutral site though it is much closer to Syracuse’s home turf.

    USC RB Silas Redd, a Connecticut native, has said that at least 25 of his family members will be in attendance at Saturday’s game to watch him play in Cardinal and Gold.

    After beating up on Hawaii last weekend 49-10, the Trojans were reportedly unsatisfied with their performance. This does not bode well for Syracuse.

GameDay Information

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    Who: USC vs Syracuse

    When: Saturday, 1230pm (PDT) 3:30pm (EDT)

    Where: East Rutherford, New Jersey

    Stadium: MetLife Stadium

    TV: ABC and ESPN2

    Radio: 710 ESPN Radio in Southern California, WTKW 99.5 FM in Syracuse

    Internet Stream: Live Audio Stream (pay service) on USC's official website and Syracuse's official website

Depth Chart for USC

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    The USC Depth Chart remains unchanged from Week 1.

    Starters in bold

    OFFENSE:

    SPLIT END

    • 2 Robert Woods (6-1, 190, Jr.)
    • 8 George Farmer (6-1, 205, So.)
    • 85 Victor Blackwell (6-1, 190, Fr.)

    LEFT TACKLE

    • 70 Aundrey Walker (6-6, 300, So.)
    • 75 Max Tuerk (6-6, 285, Fr.)
    • 72 Chad Wheeler (6-7, 265, Fr.)

    LEFT GUARD

    • 66 Marcus Martin (6-3, 325, So.)
    • 50 Abe Markowitz (6-1, 310, Sr.)
    • 63 Giovanni Di Poalo (6-4, 290, So.)

    CENTER

    • 78 Khaled Holmes (6-4, 305, Sr.)
    • 69 Cyrus Hobbi (6-3, 290, Fr.)

    RIGHT GUARD

    • 59 John Martinez (6-2, 300, Jr.)
    • 74 Jeremy Galten (6-5, 295, Sr.)
    • 67 David Garness (6-5, 290, Jr.)

    RIGHT TACKLE

    • 77 Kevin Graf (6-6, 295, Jr.)
    • 76 Nathan Guertler (6-5, 270, So.)
    • 73 Zach Banner (6-9, 335, Fr.)

    TIGHT END

    • 86 Xavier Grimble (6-5, 260, So.) OR
    • 82 Randall Telfer (6-4, 255, So.)
    • 88 Jalen Cope-Fitzpatrick (6-5, 250, Fr.) OR
    • 87 Junior Pomee (6-3, 255, Fr.) OR
    • 89 Christian Thomas (6-3, 250, So.)

    FLANKER

    • 9 Marqise Lee (6-0, 195, So.)
    • 10 De’Von Flournoy (6-0, 180, Jr.) OR
    • 15 Nelson Agholor (6-1, 180, Fr.)

    QUARTERBACK

    • 7 Matt Barkley (6-2, 230, Sr.)
    • 13 Max Wittek (6-4, 235, Fr.) OR
    • 6 Cody Kessler (6-1, 215, Fr.)

    FULLBACK

    • 31 Soma Vainuku (6-0, 250, Fr.)
    • 38 Jahleel Pinner (5-11, 225, Fr.)
    • 45 Charles Burks (6-0, 230, Fr.)
    • 48 Hunter Simmons (6-1, 250, Jr.)

    TAILBACK

    • 22 Curtis McNeal (5-7, 190, Sr*) OR
    • 25 Silas Redd (5-10, 200, Jr.)
    • 30 D.J. Morgan (5-10, 190,

    DEFENSE:

    DEFENSIVE END

    • 96 Wes Horton (6-5, 255, Sr.)
    • 93 Greg Townsend Jr. (6-3, 260, Fr.) OR
    • 81 Kevin Greene (6-4, 255, Jr.)

    NOSE TACKLE

    • 99 Antwaun Woods (6-1, 305, Fr.)
    • 97 Christian Heyward (6-2, 285, Fr.)
    • 98 Cody Temple (6-3, 285, Fr.)

    DEFENSIVE TACKLE

    • 90 George Uko (6-3, 275, So.)
    • 94 Leonard Williams (6-5, 270, Fr.)

    DEFENSIVE END

    • 58 J.R. Tavai (6-2, 265, So.)
    • 91 Morgan Breslin (6-2, 245, Jr.)

    SAM LINEBACKER

    • 18 Dion Bailey (6-0, 210, So.)
    • 34 Tony Burnett (6-1, 205, Sr.)
    • 52 Dallas Kelley (5-11, 225, Sr.)

    MIKE LINEBACKER

    • 55 Lamar Dawson (6-2, 235, So.)
    • 47 Scott Starr (6-3, 220, Fr.)
    • 51 Will Andrew (6-2, 235, Jr.)

    WILL LINEBACKER

    • 10 Hayes Pullard (6-1, 235, So.)
    • 56 Anthony Sarao (6-0, 215, Fr.)
    • 40 Jabari Ruffin (6-4, 230, Fr.)
    • 53 Marquis Simmons (6-1, 220, Jr.)

    CORNERBACK

    • 21 Nickell Robey (5-8, 165, Jr.)
    • 23 Kevon Seymour (6-0, 170, Fr.)
    • 15 Ryan Henderson (5-10, 170, Fr.)

    FREE SAFETY

    • 7 T.J. McDonald (6-3, 205, Sr.)
    • 19 Drew McAllister (6-1, 205, Sr.) OR
    • 27 Gerald Bowman (6-1, 215, Jr.)

    STRONG SAFETY

    • 24 Demetrius Wright (6-1, 195, Jr.) OR
    • 29 Jawanza Starling (6-1, 200, Sr.)
    • 26 Josh Shaw (6-1, 190, So.)

    CORNERBACK

    • 16 Anthony Brown (5-9, 180, So.)
    • 4 Torin Harris (6-0, 190, Jr.)
    • 17 Devian Shelton (6-2, 185, Fr.)
    • 49 Ryan Dillard (5-10, 185, Fr.)
    • 30 Brian Baucham (5-11, 170, Sr.)
    • So.)
    • 37 Javorius Allen (6-1, 215, Fr.)

     

    SPECIAL TEAMS:

    PUNTER

    • 35 Kyle Negrete (6-0, 225, Sr.) OR
    • 35 Kris Albarado (5-10, 195, Fr.)

    PLACEKICKER

    • 48 Andre Heidari (5-10, 200, So.)
    • 48 Craig McMahon (6-1, 195, So.)
    • 39 Alex Wood (5-10, 175, Fr.)

    SNAPPER

    • 61 Peter McBride (6-1, 220, Fr.)
    • 18 John Manoogian (6-0, 220, Sr.)

    HOLDER

    • 7 Matt Barkley (6-2, 230, Sr.)
    • 6 Cody Kessler (6-1, 215, Fr.)
    • 35 Kyle Negrete (6-0, 225, Sr.)

    KICKOFF RETURNER

    • 2 Robert Woods (6-1, 190, Jr.) AND
    • 22 Curtis McNeal (5-7, 190, Sr.) OR
    • 9 Marqise Lee (6-0, 195, So.)
    • 8 George Farmer (6-1, 205, So.) OR
    • 21 Nickell Robey (5-8, 165, Jr.)

    PUNT RETURNER

    • 21 Nickell Robey (5-8, 165, Jr.) OR
    • 2 Robert Woods (6-1, 190, Jr.)
    • 9 Marqise Lee (6-0, 195, So.)


Depth Chart for Syracuse

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    Offense:

    QUARTERBACK

    • 12 Ryan Nassib (6'2, 229 SR)
    • 17 Charley Loeb (6'4, 212, SR)

    TAILBACK

    • 45 Jerome Smith (5'11, 213, JR)
    • P. Gulley (5'9, 1818, JR)

    FULLBACK

    • 31 Clay Cleveland (6'0, 236, JR)

    WIDE RECEIVER

    • Marcus Sales (6'0, 183, SR)
    • Adrian Flemming (6'3, 196, JR)
    • Jarrod West (6'2, 204, JR)

    WIDE RECEIVER

    •  25 Jeremiah Kobena (5-11, 180, SO)
    •  15 Alec Lemon  (6-2, 202, SR)

    TIGHT END

    • 85 Beckett Wales (6'3, 252, JR)
    • 86 David Stevens (6'3, 231, SR)
    • 81 Louie Addazio (6'3, 241, SO)
    • 83 Max Beaulieu (6'3, 241, JR)

    OFFENSIVE TACKLE

    • 67 Justin Pugh (6'6, 292, SR)
    • 77 Lou Alexander (6"4, 331, SR)

    OFFENSIVE GUARD

    • 75 Zack Chibane (6"5, 293, SR)

    CENTER

    • 59 Macky MacPherson (6'2, 269, JR)

     

    DEFENSE:

    DEFENSIVE END

    • 91 Brandon Sharpe (6'2, 245, SR)
    • 92 Robert Welsh (6'2, 260, JR)
    • 13 Dean Goggins (6'1, 272, SR)

    NOSE TACKLE

    • 56 Cory Boatman (6'1, 281, SR)

    DEFENSIVE TACKLE

    • 96 Jay Bromley (6'3, 280, JR)

    LINEBACKER

    • 33 Dan Vaughan (6'2, 219, SR)
    • 35 Dyshawn Davis (6'3, 213, SO)
    • 39 Dom Anene (6'1, 224, SR)
    • 11 Marquis Spruill ( 6'1, 216, 2V)
    • 18 Siriki Diabate (5'10, 210, SR)

    CORNERBACK

    • 9 Rishard Anderson (6'1, 189, SR)
    • 24 Jaston George (5'10, 159, SO)
    • 26 Kevyn Scott (5'11, 207)

    SAFETY

    • 21 Shamarko Thomas (5'10, 208, SR)
    • 28 Jeremi Wilkes (5'9, 189, JR)

     

    SPECIAL TEAMS:

    KICKER

    • 37 Ross Krautman (5'7, 155, JR 19)
    • Ryan Lichtenstein (5'11, 161, SR)

    PUNTER

    • 42 Shane Raupers (5'10, 175)

    LONG SNAPPER

    • 59 Macky MacPherson (6'2, 269, JR)

    HOLDER

    • 17 Charley Loeb (6'4, 212, SR)

    KICK RETURN

    • 25 Jeremiah Kobena (5'11, 180, SO)

    PUNT RETURN

    • 30 Steve Rene (5'7, 176, JR)

     

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What Happened to the Trojans Last Week

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    USC faced off against an over-matched Hawaii team under first time head coach Norm Chow. The offense put on a show, most notably sophomore receiver Marqise Lee who, on the first play of the game, caught a pass from Matt Barkley and turned it into a 75-yard touchdown within the first 14 seconds of the game.

    Later in the game, Lee would become just the 2nd Trojan to return a kick 100 yards for another touchdown.

    The Trojans dominated and won 49-10.

What Happened to the Orange Last Week

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    Syracuse lost a thriller to Northwestern 42-41 in the final minutes of the game when the backup QB for the Wildcats, Trevor Siemian, connected with a nine-yard touchdown pass with just 44 seconds remaining in the game.

    This ended a valiant comeback effort by 5th year senior and three year starter QB Ryan Nassib and the Orange. Nassib had a career day, setting a single game school record for completions at 44-for-65 and passing yards at 470. Nassib had four TD passes - all in the second half.

    Northwestern came into this game having lost all three previous match-ups against the Orange in the Carrier Dome.

What It Means to Both Teams

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    For USC, this is the next stop on their self-proclaimed "Unfinished Business" tour. A win advances them in their quest for this year's National Championship. This team wants to restore Troy to the throne of college football, and the game against the Orange is just a step along the way.

    For Syracuse, a win keeps them from starting the season 0-2, a potentially soul-crushing moment for this team. It will also capture national headlines if the Orange can knock off the No. 2 team in the nation.

Key Player for USC

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    Matt Barkley.

    Barkley is a senior and four year starter. He is a leading candidate for the Heisman Trophy. He has been running practices. He is the heart and soul of not just the offense, but the team.

    He has a lot of weapons to throw to and hand off to and he not only knows how to use them, but how to spread it out for a balanced offensive attack.

    If Matt Barkley has a good game, the entire team will have a good game.

    Can you remember Matt ever having a truly bad game?

Key Player for Syracuse

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    Quarterback Ryan Nassib engineered the Orange's comeback effort in Week 1 and he has the chops to run his offense intelligently while thinking on his feet.

    The Orange don't have the depth of talent that USC has, but a truly savvy QB can make up much of the difference.

USC Will Win If...

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    USC will win if they show up.

    What? You know it's true.

    OK, OK. USC will win if the offense can perform at least as well as they did against Hawaii and, even more importantly, if the defense can hold Nassib and his corps of receivers and tailbacks.

    Syracuse Head Coach Doug Marrone is a bit afraid of how good Matt Barkley is, he told CBS Sports:

    "I was one of a couple people that was hoping he'd go on to the NFL," Marrone said. "I'm not going to sit here and tell you that I'm happy he's back."

    In fact, Marrone when on to say that if Barkley had gone into the 2012 draft, he would have been drafted ahead of last year's Heisman winner Robert Griffin III.

    This makes me wonder how much faith Marrone has in his own defense.

Syracuse Will Win If...

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    Syracuse will win if...USC's plane tragically goes down.

    What? You know I'm right.

    Syracuse winning this game would be an epic upset. I'm talking Michigan losing to Appalachian State, I'm talking USC losing to Stanford in 2007 (who USC beat 42-0 in 2006).

    It is just not feasible that the Orange have any chance in this game.USC is a 25 1/2 point favorite.

    All bravado aside, Syracuse's offense is no patsy, however USC's offensive passing attack will severely test the Orange's secondary. Cover Woods and the Trojans go to Lee. Smother Lee and Woods will make a break for it.

    USC's ability to score quickly is also something Syracuse will have to deal with in order to have a chance.

Prediction

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    USC's offense will over power Syracuse's defense.

    USC's secondary will easily handle Syracuse's offense.

    USC's defense should be able to handle Syracuse's offense easily. Sure, the Orange are a bit better than Hawaii, but still nowhere near the caliber of offenses (or defenses) the USC D will face in their Pac-12 schedule.

    USC  47

    Syracuse 17

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