The Unit Breakdown: Special Teams

Take an inside look at the USC kicking competition that helped to fire special teams back up.

The Trojans' loss in South Bend was tough on the entire team, especially USC kicker Andre Heidari. Heidari's performance against Notre Dame--missing two key field goals--was one of his worst as a Trojans.

"You know, everyone has a bad day, even the pros," said Heidari.

The loss to the Fighting Irish opened up a kicking competition on Howard Jones. Lead by special teams coach John Baxter, Heidari went head to head against the rest of the special teams unit to keep his starting spot.

Heidari's biggest competition came from walk-on Alex Wood. And Heidari says the contest was even closer than you might think.

"We were about tied the entire week through," said Heidari.

Fast forward a week from the Notre Dame game and Heidari came out to the Coliseum once again as the starting kicker. And in a compete 180, he had his best career performance against Utah.

So what's the secret to his success? Heidari credits the competition, saying it helped to fire him up.

Heidari will have another challenge on his hands Friday as the Trojans take on a very tough Oregon State at Reser Stadium.

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