Preview: Utah vs. USC

USC (4-3) returns to the Coliseum on Saturday to host Utah (4-3). The Trojans are coming off a 14-10 loss at Notre Dame and are facing a situation in which 13 possible scholarship players may be out for the game...

After playing in the hostile confines of Notre Dame Stadium in South Bend (Ind.), USC (4-3) returns home to the Coliseum on Saturday to host Utah (4-3).

The Utes will pose a great challenge for the short-handed Trojans. They beat a top-five Stanford team just two weeks ago before falling to Arizona.

USC is 1-1 in their "new season" under the direction of interim head coach Ed Orgeron, who is looking for his second straight win in the Coliseum.

The Trojans will most likely take the field on Saturday without a number of skilled players; they aren't expecting to have a single scholarship tight end available.

Marqise Lee, questionable
Nelson Agholor, possible
Tre Madden, probable
Ty Isaac, possible
Dion Bailey, questionable
Morgan Breslin, out
Anthony Brown, out
Xavier Grimble, out
Randall Telfer, out
Jalen Cope-Fitzpatrick, out

On top of that injury update, the Trojans lost three players for the season in the past week, including Justin Davis, Lamar Dawson, and Jordan Simmons.

The key to the game? It could be walk-ons. Get used to the names Robby Kolanz, George Katrib, Aaron Minor, and Cody Skene. You could be seeing them line up at receiver.

Tight ends? Shane Sullivan, Chris Wilson, and possibly outside linebacker Kevin Greene will be lining up.

With Dawson out for the season, redshirt sophomore Anthony Sarao will start at weakside linebacker.

The offensive line will need to step up its game from a lackluster performance at Notre Dame, plagued by penalties. Utah boasts one of the best pass rushes in the nation; they're currently No. 11 in sacks – and it isn't the same defensive tackle who gave the Pac-12 fits a season ago. Star Lotulelei is gone to the NFL but Trevor Reilly is filling the gap.

Utah quarterback Travis Wilson injured his hand a week ago, but all reports indicate he'll be ready to play Saturday against the Trojans. His go-to skill players include running back Bubba Poole and receiver Dres Anderson.

USC's secondary will once again get a shakeup this week. Safety Josh Shaw has returned to cornerback and I won't be surprised if he is now kept there the rest of the season. Watch for freshman Leon McQuay to see ample time at safety.

The game Saturday against Utah starts the second half of the Trojans schedule, which features six Pac-12 games.

It will be broadcast on the Pac-12 Network. Kickoff is set for 1 pm PT. Be sure to check in on the message boards for all the latest before, during, and after the game.

Get in the discussion with other USC fans in the Fight On! SC Insiders Forum

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