As USC fell to Stanford for the fourth year in a row, certain things came to light. Most of it was not pretty. Weakness on the O-line—especially the left side and the ease with which a team can render the Trojan's elite offense useless, to name just two.
The most telling stat of the game is USC’s rushing yardage. The Trojans gained just 26 yards over four quarters. Of course Matt Barkley’s four sack counted against that total, but it's still plenty terrible.
On the most basic level you have to wonder how USC can succeed without a center or kicker. They can’t, as was evidenced on Saturday in Palo Alto. The losses of Holmes and Heidari have decimated the entire offense.
Kiffin’s lack of faith in walk-on kicker Alex Wood doesn’t help matters either. It is hard to figure out what is going on in Kiffin’s head right now, but that game plan was clearly awful and ill-suited to the system David Shaw operates for the Cardinal.
It is hard to maintain a defensive advantage when you can’t tackle. And USC’s D has issues with tackling throughout the Lane Kiffin era.
Here is something to chew on USC fans: UCLA is the only undefeated team in Los Angeles.
UCLA’s Jonathan Franklin’s season rushing stats: 66 carries, 541 yards, 8.2 YPC
USC team season rushing: 84 carries, 365 yards, 4.3 YPC
Matt Barkley season passing: 66 comp, 109 att, 60.5% comp, 813 yds, 10 TDS, 3 Ints
Freshman QB Hundley season passing: 69 comp, 103 att, 67% comp, 827 yds, 8 TDs, 3 Ints
Let’s take a look at the winners and losers from USC’s 2012 matchup with the Stanford Cardinal.