Petros Auburn Review

If you order this column to read my grades of this team then this isn't the week to do it. I'm not grading this team for awhile. I'm not arrogant enough to grade these guys. Everybody gets an "A" right now. They've won six straight games by over 21 points. This is not high school football, Ladies and Gentlemen. This is the highest level of college athletics and that sort of domination is unprecedented even by the great teams of the past.

The great Bob Dylan once said "Propaganda is always phony…".  You should listen to Bob, you shouldn't listen to me.  My "I can't pick USC every week" excuse proved to be falling down the slippery slope into lip service.  It's not that I'm embarrassed by the fact that I picked Auburn, it's not that.  It's not that I've ever thought about wanting USC to lose a football game because wanting USC to lose a football game is not in my realm of thinking.  My heart goes with these players, especially those I played football with (Lenny Vandermade, Keary Colbert, Jacob Rogers, Matt Cassel, Marcell Allmond, Kevin Arbet).  I can never think of not rooting for USC but even I can't believe what they're doing anymore.

 

If you order this column to read my grades of this team then this isn't the week to do it.  I'm not grading this team for awhile.  I'm not arrogant enough to grade these guys.  Everybody gets an "A" right now.  They've won six straight games by over 21 points.  This is not high school football, Ladies and Gentlemen.  This is the highest level of college athletics and that sort of domination is unprecedented even by the great teams of the past.  They've won nine straight ballgames and are basically eating people alive with defense.  This was never so evident as in yesterdays game when Pete Carroll's defense frustrated not only the Auburn offense but 86,000 rabid, toothless Southerners. They had absolutely nothing to cheer about….nothing.  They had one 14-yard run by what is a very good running back in Cadillac Williams but the rest of the day was simply a futile effort for anybody wearing orange and toting a banjo. 

 

All I heard about during my three days in that hot, humid hell of a town was "we love great football" and "we stay until the end of the game no matter what".  My friends, those seats were empty in the fourth quarter.  Those fans were so frustrated at their lack of ability to get anything going that they left early.  Now, was Auburn a great place to watch a football game? The answer to that question is yes.  Were the people of Auburn kind and nice and do they love their football?  The answer to that question is yes.  Does Auburn possess the finest front seven USC will face this season?  The answer to that question is yes.  Does Auburn have two, if not three, of the best running backs in the SEC if not the country?  The answer to that question is yes but does USC have perhaps the two most dynamic and versatile coaches in the game with Pete Carroll and Norm Chow?  The answer is to that question is hell yes.  Does USC have the best defensive line in the country?  Yep.  Is Matt Grootegoed pound for pound the best football player on the USC team after forcing two fumbles and raising hell with a bad back?  Do I even need to answer that question? 

 

Did USC's inexperienced players step up in a huge way, in a gigantic way, in the game on Saturday?  Yeah, they sure did.  Darnell Bing, it's been a long time coming but he turned in an unbelievable performance.  Lofa Tatupu was all over the field making plays with a big motor.  Hershel Dennis is going to have a 1,000 yard season, mark my words.  Matt Leinart played mistake free football and led his team to victory in a situation that would leave most of us very, very nervous.  Can you imagine an offense with a new tailback, a new fullback in Lee Webb, and a brand new quarterback going to a place like Auburn, Alabama and not making one mistake?  That will be the mark of your USC football team this season.  You may not see the highly explosive offensive circus that Carson Palmer was the ringmaster of last year.  You will see efficient, conservative play calling, a run game and a helluva lot of defense.  I thought the game would be tight and I knew the Trojans would represent well.  I did not know that they would once again shock the nation in such dramatic fashion with the slow choking of a top ten football team.  

 

BYU is next and I will refrain from commenting on this website, on my radio show, on television or anywhere else about the Mormon religion or my feelings about religion or politics.  I may or may not have dated a Mormon prom queen at Peninsula High School and the rumors of me poisoning her are unfounded.  Please, USC fans who I love dearly, who are the cornerstone of my very small career, refrain from throwing hot dogs, nachos, pretzels (salted or unsalted) and any beverages at me as the Trojans take the field for the first time this year at the Coliseum.  Please save your money. I realize that I made a mistake in picking Auburn.  I can say that I probably won't have to pick against USC for the remainder of the season and that is something that makes me very happy. 

Petros Papadakis can be heard each morning on KMPC radio (1540am) from 9-10.  He is also the sideline radio reporter and pre-game host for Trojan football broadcasts on KMPC.  Petros is a football analyst with Fox Sports Net on the Southern California Sports Report and he also serves as a regular contributor for "The Best Damn Sports Show Period".  This fall he will begin his 2nd season as the sideline reporter for the High School Game of the Week on Fox Sports Net covering the top HS games in Southern California.  He will also be providing this column after each Trojan game and a regular monthly article in the WeAreSC magazine. 

Special note - John Papadakis, Petros' father, will be the guest speaker along with Sam Cunningham at the WeAreSC dinner this Wednesday night at the Papdakis Taverna in San Pedro.  For more information please call 310/543-5557.


USCFootball.com Top Stories