Both teams had easy non-conference tuneups to open the season but now jump right into conference play in Week 2. First-year USC coach Lincoln Riley looks to snap the Trojans’ three-game losing streak in the Pac-12 and avenge a home loss to Stanford last season. The Cardinal lost their final six Pac-12 games in 2021.
USC’s secondary vs. Stanford QB Tanner McKee. McKee was sharp in the opener with his second career 300-yard passing game. He went 22 for 37 for 308 yards and two TDs but will face a much tougher defense this week. The Trojans intercepted four passes last week and returned three of them for TDs, tying a Pac-12 record.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
USC: QB Caleb Williams. The Oklahoma transfer made a strong debut for USC, completing 19 of 22 passes for 249 yards and two TDs. He also ran for 68 yards on six carries. Williams’ 86.3% completion rate was the best in a single game for a USC QB with at least 20 passes since Matt Barkley went 19 for 20 against Colorado in 2012.
Stanford: RB E.J. Smith. The son of Hall of Famer Emmitt Smith had a big day last week against Colgate. He ran for a career-high 118 yards on 11 carries and caught five passes for 37 yards. He ran for two TDs, including an 87-yarder that was the fifth longest in school history.
FACTS & FIGURES
USC has lost four of its last five games at Stanford. … The 66 points last week against Rice for the Trojans were their most in a game since 2008 against Washington State and most in an opener since 1929 against UCLA. … Transfer WR Jordan Addison had five catches for 54 yards and two TDs in his debut for the Trojans. … USC had no punts in the opener, the first time the Trojans have done that in a game since 2014 against Fresno State. … Stanford committed four turnovers in the opening win against Colgate, the first time the Cardinal won a game with at least four turnovers since 2012 against Oregon State. … Cardinal WR Michael Wilson caught two TD passes against Colgate.