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Husky Football Blog

The latest news and analysis on the Montlake Dawgs.

November 11, 2011 at 8:32 PM

UW-USC — Just the Facts

Here’s the expanded version of the Scouting Report that will run in our Saturday paper that includes the nuts and bolts on the game:

Washington (6-3, 4-2) at USC (7-2, 4-2)
Time: 12:45 p.m. at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum TV: FX Radio: 950 AM The line: Trojans by 12.

The setup: The Huskies have one more chance to get a marquee win in the regular season against a ranked team and do so against a USC squad against which it has pulled off big upsets the last two seasons, each on last-second field goals. The game also marks another homecoming for UW coach Steve Sarkisian, an assistant at USC for seven years before taking over at Washington.

What to Expect: The weather forecast calls for temperatures in the mid-60s and rain, and that might slow down two offenses that have high-flying passing attacks. If the offenses can overcome the elements, however, this is another UW game that has all the earmarks of being a shootout — UW is last in the conference in pass defense and USC 10th while QBs Keith Price of UW and Matt Barkley of the Trojans rank third and fourth in pass efficiency.

Notes: Thanks to a quirk in the schedule due to changes made to accommodate the Pac-12’s expansion, this is the second straight year UW is playing at USC. UW won last season 32-31 on a 32-yard field goal by Erik Folk on the final play of the game. UW also beat USC in 2009 in Seattle 16-13 on a 22-yard field goal by Folk. … This will be UWs last trip to USC until at least 2015, however, as the Trojans will come to Seattle next season and then the two teams won’t play in 2013 and 2014. … USC leads the overall series 49-28-4 and 29-11 in the LA Coliseum. However, UW is 9-9-1 in the last 19 meetings overall. … Leading the announcing team is Gus Johnson, best-known among UW fans for his enthusiastic call of Isaiah Thomas’ buzzer-beater against Arizona in the Pac-10 basketball tournament last March. … UW has a chance to win seven regular-season games for the first time since 2002. …

Key matchup: UW’s defensive front seven vs. USC’s offensive line. USC has allowed just four sacks in six Pac-12 games, while the Huskies are near the bottom in getting sacks with 10. If UW can’t get any pressure on Barkley and gives him all day to throw to receivers such as Robert Woods, it could be a long afternoon for the Huskies.

Injuries: UW — RB Deontae Cooper (knee), CB Adam Long (knee), DE Hau’oli Jamora (knee), RB Johri Fogerson (knee) out. WR James Johnson (ankle), S James Sample (shoulder) questionable.

USC — DT DaJohn Harris (ankle), CB Torin Harris (shoulder) questionable; LB Dion Bailey (concussion), RB Marc Tyler (shoulder), TB/WR George Farmer (ankle) probable.

Upset brewing?: The Huskies have beaten USC as a double-digit underdog each of the past two seasons, so no reason they can’t do it again, right? If nothing else, UW should go into the game with confidence, and if Chris Polk can have a big game and Price reverts to form anything is possible, as the Huskies have proven the last two years.

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