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Oregon Ducks vs USC Trojans Pre-Game Analysis

California v USC Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

Week 10 Weekend Matchup: Oregon Ducks at USC Trojans

When: Saturday 11/5, at 4:00 PT on ESPN

Vegas Over/Under: USC -17

Oregon comes into this matchup with a 3-5 overall record and USC comes in at 5-3 on the season. USC is 3-2 in Pac-12 play, while Oregon is 1-4 in conference play. USC is looking to extend their winning streak to 5 games, as they come off a Thursday night 45-24 win against Cal. Oregon is coming off a much needed win against Arizona St.

For USC: Even though the Trojans had a few players out against Cal, Sam Darnold found a way to make the new USC offense work, throwing for 5 TD. While JuJu Smith-Shuster was somewhat limited due to an injury he sustained the previous week, Darreus Rodgers stepped up and delivered a 2 TD performance. It will be interesting to see how the banged up WR corps will perform this week, as Oregon has struggled to defend the pass this year. It’s also unlikely RB Justin Davis will be ready to go, and RB Aca’Cedric Ware was injured in practice this week, so look for Ronald Jones to get a heavy load again this week. It should be another great week for the offense, as Oregon allows over 40 points per game on average.

California v USC Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

Defensively for the Trojans, it’s no secret that Oregon runs one of the highest tempo offenses in the country. Although it won’t be quite the same look they got from Cal last week, it will be similar in style and tempo. They fared well against the Golden Bears, with DB Marvell Tell having an extraordinary game. If they can put forth the same effort and get similar results, they’ll give the Trojans a great shot to win.

For Oregon: Clearly this season has been an uphill battle for the Ducks. Although people expected a down year for this team, no one thought it would be this bad. QB Justin Herbert and squad will need to replicate their offensive effort from last week if they want to have a shot at outscoring USC. Herbert and WR Pharoh Brown will need to keep the chemistry going, as they connected for 2 TDs last week.

Arizona State v Oregon Photo by Steve Dykes/Getty Images

Defensively it will be a tall order to stop the strong USC offense. If Oregon is unable to move the ball offensively, the defense will get worn down and we could see a blowout. Oregon will need to adopt the “bend don’t break” philosophy to try to keep USC out of the end zone and force field goals to keep the game close.

Prediction: For the second week in a row, USC will score over 40 and hold their opponents to under 30. I’ll take the Trojans to win 48-28.