Southern Cal will not win the Pac-10.
I’m picking only one USC to have a shot at their conference title this year, and if you read above you can see it’s not the powerhouse Trojans. Once again the Men of Troy are stocked with NFL-caliber talent, but the rest of the conference is catching up, and I don’t think the past couple seasons are an indication that Southern Cal has what it takes to make it eight in a row in the Pac-10.
QB Mark Sanchez did fine last season filling in for John David Booty and RB Joe McKnight is a playmaker that’ll have people soon forgetting all about Reggie Bush. Still the Trojans lost some good talent, especially on defense, from a squad that dropped two games last year — including the shocker to Stanford.
I wouldn’t expect another clunker like that out of this team but anyone who thinks they can look past Oregon just because Dennis Dixon is gone might be in for a surprise. Combine that game with a date the very next weekend against last year’s conference co-champion Arizona State and the Trojans have a tough time ahead if they expect to hold on to the crown.
Of course out-of-conference schedule doesn’t go very far in determining the Pac-10 winner, but to say Southern Cal has a huge game in week three when they host Ohio State is a massive understatement. If the Trojans lose that game they’ll be waiving goodbye to their national title hopes before they’ve even started their conference schedule and it could be the catalyst that eventually sends them down from the Pac-10′s top spot.
We’re not going to predict a national title game berth, as some have, but the conference championship seems relatively safe. After all, couldn’t you say
the Trojans lost some good talent, especially on defense, from a squad that dropped two games last year pretty much every year? And we’ve certainly lost later than week 3 and still been in contention for the national title.