No. 7 Trojans, No. 16 Bruins face off with plenty at stake


No. 7 Southern California (9-1, 7-1 Pac-12; No. 7 CFP) at No. 16 UCLA (8-2, 5-2; No. 16 CFP), Saturday, 8 p.m. ET (FOX)

Line: USC by 1 1/2, in response to FanDuel Sportsbook.

SERIES RECORD: USC leads 51-33-7.

WHAT’S AT STAKE?

Bragging rights within the Metropolis of Angels aren’t the one factor at stake because the Trojans will declare a spot within the Pac-12 title sport with a victory over the Bruins. USC would additionally preserve a path to the School Soccer Playoff, highlighting how dramatic the turnaround has been in Lincoln Riley’s first season in cost. UCLA misplaced management of its path to Las Vegas with a stunning 34-28 loss to Arizona, however holding on to the Victory Bell for one more yr would soften that blow.

KEY MATCHUP

USC QB Caleb Williams vs. UCLA’s cross rush. The Bruins have been shredded by Wildcats QB Jayden de Laura when he prolonged performs and gave his receivers extra time to get open, and that’s arguably the most important energy of the electrifying Williams. UCLA should include the sophomore and sort out him when it has the prospect. If edge rushers Laiatu Latu (9 1/2 tackles for loss, eight sacks) and Grayson Murphy (9 TFLs, 5 sacks) are lower than the duty, Williams will add to his 3,010 yards passing and Pac-12-best 31 touchdowns towards two interceptions.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

USC: RB Austin Jones took over because the lead tailback after Travis Dye sustained a season-ending ankle harm in a 55-17 win final week over Colorado, speeding for 74 yards and catching 4 passes for 39 yards with a landing. The Stanford switch must present all aspects of his sport in changing the well-rounded Dye, spelled by dynamic freshman Raleek Brown and speedy ex-TCU runner Darwin Barlow.

UCLA: QB Dorian Thompson-Robinson wasn’t at his finest towards the Wildcats, throwing for 245 yards and one landing whereas taking three sacks. His incapability to get on monitor as a runner, netting 24 yards on 11 carries, would possibly give the Trojans a template to repeat. Thompson-Robinson delivered his signature efficiency towards USC final season, accounting for 395 yards and 6 touchdowns within the 62-33 pummeling.

FACTS & FIGURES

The 62 factors allowed by the Trojans in final season’s rivalry sport tied the worst defensive efficiency in class historical past. Bruins coach Chip Kelly guided Oregon to 62 factors on the Coliseum when he was with the Geese in 2012. … UCLA had its streak of scoring 30 or extra factors in 12 straight video games snapped by Arizona. The loss additionally ended an eight-game successful streak on the Rose Bowl. … USC LB Eric Gentry may return after lacking the previous three video games due to an ankle harm. The Arizona State switch has 52 tackles, 2 1/2 TFLs, one sack, one interception and one pressured fumble in seven video games. … Bruins RB Zach Charbonnet ran for 167 yards and a landing towards the Trojans final season. He has rushed for at the very least 100 yards in seven of eight video games this season, together with all six convention video games wherein he has performed. … USC’s passing sport ought to have its full allotment of extensive receivers out there. Jordan Addison, the 2021 Biletnikoff Award winner at Pittsburgh, returned from a lower-body harm to make one reception for two yards towards Colorado on a managed snap depend. Mario Williams, who’s tied for second on the workforce in landing receptions and third in catches and yards receiving, missed the previous three video games due to an undisclosed harm. … UCLA allowed 4 touchdowns on six red-zone possessions by Arizona, persevering with a worrying season-long development. The protection has made three stops contained in the 20 with out permitting factors, surrendering 25 touchdowns in 37 alternatives. In Pac-12 play, opponents have scored touchdowns 70% of the time (21 of 30). … Caleb Williams has thrown a landing cross to 12 completely different receivers. He has additionally run for six touchdowns. … The Trojans and Bruins will play in entrance of followers on the Rose Bowl for the primary time since 2018. The thrilling last-second 43-38 win by USC in 2020 came about in an empty stadium due to pandemic attendance restrictions. UCLA is anticipating a season-high crowd of 70,865, together with its largest-ever scholar part of greater than 16,000.

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