Checking the Offensive Matchups: OSU vs. USC

USC, ACCORDING TO much of the media does not this season, have the same high level of explosive offense they've had in years past. But when you break down the units on the Southern Cal offense, they still appear to present as formidable a challenge as ever.



The veteran Trojan offensive line has 95 starts between them, while the OSU line shares just 64 starts.  Oregon State has allowed 19 sacks while USC has allowed nine.

USC placed center Kristofer O'Dowd (6-5 300) and left guard Jeff Byers (6-3 290) on the Outland Trophy watch list for 2009 and O'Dowd was first team all conference in 2008.

While the OSU line is gaining experience and improving week to week, a big advantage goes to USC's offensive line.

Reason: Can't argue with experience and talent, and USC is loaded with it.


Experience vs. youth. Sean Canfield is second in the Pac-10 in completion percentage (67.9) while Matt Barkley throws for 30 more yards per game and leads the conference in passing yards per game.

Barkley has tossed for five scores to just three picks, while Canfield has eight scores and four picks.

Canfield has put together his best two games as a Beaver, while Barkley threw for 380 last week on the road versus Notre Dame. Tough to pick here.


Reason: Canfield is a senior and experience will forever get the vote if both parties are equal.


Jacquizz Rodgers is joined this week by Ryan McCants who is returning from off season knee surgery.

While OSU gained a set of legs, USC has lost possibly their best in Stafon Johnson.  The stable is still full, however with Joe McKnight and Allen Bradford.

Rodgers broke out against Stanford posting his career best 189 yards. McKnight and Bradford are galloping at over six yards a touch.

McCants is still an uncertainty at this point, but certainly can't hurt having him back.

The versatility of Rodgers is expressed in his 966 total yards and 13 scores. USC backs have combined for 881 total yards and nine scores.

Reason: The versatility of Rodgers makes up for the lack of depth that USC possesses.

  Slowly emerging as a threat down the seam is OSU sophomore tight end Joe Halahuni. Brady Camp and Howard Croom join Halahuni, but serve as run blockers while Halahuni leads the group with nine catches for 127 yards.

Standing 6-5, 250 pounds USC tight end Anthony McCoy proves a difficult cover for linebackers and safeties. McCoy is the team's second leading receiver with 14 catches for 350 yards.

While Halahuni is growing into his role nicely, McCoy looks to be the real deal.

Reason: Stats don't lie, and OSU simply doesn't utilize the tight ends like USC does.

USC is completing passes at 15.1 yards per reception while OSU averages 10.9. Trojan wide outs have found pay-dirt six times to OSU's eight.

USC has size and speed while OSU has James Rodgers who lacks size, and Damola Adeniji who lacks speed. But USC is also somewhat of a one man show on the outside. Damian Williams leads all USC receivers with 467 yards and three scores.

Rodgers leads Beaver wide outs with 544 yards and four scores and Adeniji is close behind with 341 and two scores.

USC wide out Ronald Johnson has one game under his belt after returning from a broken collarbone and will add depth and experience to the group.

Reason: Rodgers has become a deep threat to match that of USC wide outs and Adeniji is a very solid No. 2.

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