Start Time: 8:00 P.M. ET, Saturday, Sept. 12
Location: Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum, Los Angeles, California
TV: Pac 12 Network
Records: Idaho 0-1, Southern California 1-0. Southern Cal leads the overall series 8-0.
Live Stats: here.
Betting Line: Idaho +43. Over/Under: 66.
Idaho Outlook: The Idaho Vandals are getting paid $1.1 million to face USC after falling to MAC foe Ohio in week one.
Excluding the disastrous first quarter, the Vandals weren't terrible on offense with 397 total yards, 25 first downs, and 5.2 yards per play on the day. Running back Elijhaa Penny (17/69/2TD) was his normal wrecking ball self with a 4.1 yards per carry average on the night. Outside of Penny, the Vandals rushed 11 times for 31 yards. Quarterback Matt Linehan (36-48/297/1TD) was forced to throw way too many passes after a 21-0 early deficit, but did find nine different receivers in the week one loss. Dezmon Epps (15/160/0TD) was a pass catching machine with a FBS-high 15 catches versus Ohio.
The bright side for Idaho defensively was the fact that Ohio didn't break 500 yards of total offense on the night. Otherwise, the Vandals defense was savaged all game long with the Bobcats averaging 7.8 yards per play, 11.4 yards per pass attempt, and 5.4 yards per carry. Marc Millan (7 tkl, 1 tfl), Broc Westlake (7 tkl), and Chris Edwards (7 tkl) were the tackle leaders for a defense that only had three tackles for loss and two sacks, both by Quinton Bradley.
Southern California Outlook: With a series of dominant performances by top ten teams during week one, USC's stood out as the Trojans beat a very solid Arkansas State team like a drum.
The Trojans put up 55 points, 5.9 yards per carry, 10.0 yards per pass attempt, and 8.0 yards per play in an overwhelming performance. Heisman candidate Cody Kessler (19-26/236/4TD) did not have to throw very often, but was deadly in connecting on touchdowns on better than 20% of his completions. Tre Madden (12/106/1TD) and Ronald Jones II (6/86/1TD) combined for 194 yards on only 18 carries with runs of 44 and 65 yards mixed in. 11 different Trojans caught passed with JuJu Smith-Schuster (4/89/1TD) catching a 61-yard touchdown pass.
The USC defense gave up 401 total yards on the night, although many of those yards can be attributed to a period of the game in which it was essentially over. Cameron Smith (7 tkl) and Matt Lopes (7 tkl, 1 tfl) that forced four turnovers. Freshman linebacker Osa Masina (4 tkl, 1 tfl, 1 fr) returned a fumble 46 yards for a touchdown for the Trojans defense. In total, USC held Arkansas State to 4.6 yards per play on the night.
Prediction: There is no other way to put it, this game will get ugly quickly. Southern Cal is one of the better offensive teams in the nation and shredded Arakansas State for 55 points in the season opener. Idaho could not stop Ohio in the season opener with the Bobcats coming ever close to the 50 point mark. Anything is possible, but asking Idaho to hand in close with USC on the road is too much to ask. USC wins big.