It has been an interesting six games for USC Trojans quarterback coach Tyson Helton. After a lengthy quarterback battle between Max Browne and Sam Darnold that resulted in Browne starting three games before being replaced by Darnold for three more, this USC offense finally appears to be on the right track.
We talked with Helton after Tuesday's football practice to get his assessment on the first half of the season. Some of the highlights from the conversation:
- On the progress of the offense through six games: "I think we've got better week by week. Obviously from week one you want to come out hot but it has been more of a building process for us. It's not how you start, it's how you finish and we really feel like the guys are catching on, playing with a lot of confidence. The quarterback has a good feel of things right now and we are progressing nicely."
- On the recent success of the offense: "The last three weeks we put up a lot of yards. We've got to stop the turnovers, that obviously hurt us in the points area. If we can take care of the turnovers we can put up a lot of points. Obviously the name of the game is points. I've never been a stats guy, it's about how many points can you score."
- Biggest improvement from the Alabama game to the Colorado game: "I just think more for the guys having a better feel for each other. Early in the season you look at a couple new concepts that the guys were still learning, a couple of new guys in different roles. Anytime you have a new quarterback that's obviously going to change up timing with the receivers. But guys have worked extremely hard, Coach Clay talks about getting better every week and they've done that, and I think we are playing with a lot of confidence right now."
- Does the game plan change with Darnold at QB? "It doesn't change from what you carry concept wise, we've always had those plays. I think it opens up a little bit more of what you can do because he's so athletic. You can move him around, you can do different things. The plays have always been there, it's just being able to maximize those plays and he does a great job with it."
Full audio here:
Stay tuned to USCFootball.com as the Trojans prepare for a road test against the Arizona Wildcats.
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