USC Football: Trojan Keys To Slowing Down Oregon State Beavers' Quizz Rodgers

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USC Football: Trojan Keys To Slowing Down Oregon State Beavers' Quizz Rodgers
Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images
Jacquizz Rodgers, Oregon State Running Back in 2009

There will be a battle this Saturday in Corvallis, Oregon, when the Oregon State University (OSU) Beavers host the University of Southern California (USC) Trojans (No. 20*).  Here is a preview of the game with a prediction:  USC Trojans Battle Oregon State Beavers at Difficult Reser Stadium.

The Beavers were a Top 25 team last month but have struggled since losing receiver James Rodgers, dropping three of the last four games.  The key to stopping OSU is slowing down running back James’ younger brother, Jacquizz (Quizz) Rodgers.

Sophomore quarterback Ryan Katz has been inconsistent.  After throwing for 393 yards against the then No. 9 Arizona Wildcats, he turned the ball over three times to the Washington Huskies.

OSU usually wins when Quizz runs for more than 100 yards.  The only exceptions this year were 83 yards in the victory over Arizona and 140 yards in the overtime loss to Washington due to three interceptions.

So, the Trojans must hold Quizz to under 100 yards.

Below are Quizz’s career rushing, receiving and passing statistics with 2010 individual game rushing information.

JACQUIZZ RODGERS' CAREER RUSHING STATISTICS

Year

   Car.

   YG

   YL

   NYG

   AVG.

   TD

   Long

2010

   191

   941

    48

   893

   99.2

    13

    74

2009

   273

  1502

    62

  1440

  110.8

    21

    61

2008

   259

  1291

    38

  1253

  113.9

    11

   33

Total

   723

  3734

  148

  3586

  108.7

    45

   74

JACQUIZZ RODGERS' CAREER RECEIVING STATISTICS

Year

   Rec.

   Yds

   TD

   Long

2010

    28

   193

    2

    28

2009

    78

   522

    1

    48

2008

    29

   247

    1

    41

Total

   135

   962

    4

    48

JACQUIZZ RODGERS' CAREER PASSING STATISTICS

Year

   Att.

   Comp.

    Int.

    Yds

   PCT

   TD

   Long

2010

     1

     1

     0

    11

   1.000

    1

    11

2009

     1

     1

     0

    14

   1.000

    1

    14

Total

     2

     2

     0

    25

   1.000

    2

    14

JACQUIZZ RODGERS' RUSHING GAME-BY-GAME (2010)

Opponent

  No.

    Yds

    TD

   LG

TCU

  16

   75

    1

   16

Louisville

  24

  132

    2

   16

Boise State

  18

   46

    1

   14

ASU

  24

  145

    2

   74

Arizona

  25

   83

    1

   18

Washington

  32

  140

    3

   22

California

  21

  116

    3

   32

UCLA

  14

   63

    0

   24

WSU

  15

   93

    0

   28

 

Quizz hits the hole with a burst and runs with power between the tackles, even though he is 5'7" and 191 pounds.  He has extremely quick feet, outstanding agility and usually makes the first guy miss.  He stops on a dime and can’t be brought down with an arm tackle.  Are you listening, Trojan defense?  No arm tackles.  He has thrown two passes, both for TDs.  He is a good receiver out of the backfield, and has one fumble in about 900 touches in his career.

USC is No. 44 nationally averaging 137.8 yards per game rushing defense.  But the Trojan defense has been inconsistent, holding Arizona, California (Shane Vereen), Washington State and Minnesota to fewer than 83 yards.

But all three USC losses gave up lots of rushing yardage: Oregon (No. 1**), 311 yards; Stanford (No. 6**), 193 yards and Washington, 225 yards. 

How many yards will Quizz Rodgers rush against USC?

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However, USC has averaged 73 yards rushing defense in the last three victories, so this trend must continue for the Trojans to win.

So what are the keys to slow down Quizz Rodgers?  The short answer is to keep the ball from him as much as possible and tackle well when he runs.

  1. The USC front seven must execute their individual assignments, wrap up their tackles and continue to pursue until the play is over.  Do not let Quizz break tackles.  Tip from Monte Kiffin:  "If you miss him, keep running [and stay in the play] because he's likely to come back again."  To contain him, USC's defense must play disciplined football, including not over-pursuing plays and maintaining gap control.
  2. The Trojans need a quick start and must score early to put OSU in a hole.  This will force OSU to pass and take some risks to catch up.  It will reduce the opportunities for Quizz to run and may lead to turnovers.
  3. USC needs to play aggressive defense with blitzes and more man-to-man coverage.  The Trojans have a very poor prevent defense that usually gives up a lot of yardage and rarely stops the other team.  This should result in sacks, hurried passes and stops, keeping the ball from Quizz.
  4. The USC offense must continue to run well and control the ball. Third down conversions are critical. They cannot allow turnovers or penalties in key situations.  Quarterback Matt Barkley managed the game very well against Arizona last week, including 15 minutes greater time of possession.

You can count on OSU to anticipate the above and do its best to counter them. 

It is expected to be rainy and cold, and this may affect the game by emphasizing rushing and ball control.  Of course, the Beavers are more accustomed to that sort of weather than the Trojans, and it has helped them in past upsets.

But the key to this game remains slowing down Quizz Rodgers.

 

* Week 12 AP Poll

** Week 12 BCS Ranking

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