2018 Football Preview – PAC 12 – Trojans
Looking for 2018 USC Trojans predictions? USC is still looking to get back to the success levels they had during the Pete Carroll era. There was some talk that last year’s team led by Sam Darnold might get them to the playoffs but they were never really close. Now they have a lot of new faces on offense in big time roles.
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2018-19 College Football Preview – USC Trojans
Head Coach: Clay Helton
2018 Record: 11-3
USC Trojans Odds to win the 2018 FBS Championship: 40/1
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USC looks like the PAC 12 South favourite but beyond they need some breaks.
2018 USC Trojans Predictions: Team Strengths
Going with Defense: USC has always had recognizable offensive stars and that was certainly the case a year ago…their “triplets” were among the best in the game.
When they are really good though they also have strong defenses and this season the defense is going to get a lot of attention. They need to perform.
The strength is going to be the back seven featuring Cameron Smith at linebacker and Marvell Tell at safety. Both are seniors
Defensive lineman Christian Rector is a guy they are hoping for lot more from this season. Everyone in the conference wanted this kid. He could be a monster off the edge.
Nothing Wrong with Starting Up Front: No matter who starts at quarterback they will be playing in front of an experienced offensive line.
All five starters return led by Toa Lobendahn, a senior who has experience all over the line but looks like he might start at center this season. He is preseason all PAC 12 first team.
Chuma Edoga and Chris Brown also received preseason recognition. These seniors will help build the wall to protect the new quarterback and open holes for shifty RB Stephen Carr, who inherits the lead role in the backfield.
2018 USC Trojans Predictions: Team Weaknesses
Talent Under Center?: Sam Darnold was not perfect but he was pretty good, so good that he was the third overall pick in the NFL draft.
That is a tough spot to fill and now they are looking to a number of possibilities including Matt Fink, Jack Sears and J.T. Daniels.
Matt Fink is the only one of the three to throw a pass in a college game but he probably has the lowest ceiling…he was only a three star recruit.
Jack Sears has a higher ceiling and has been on campus for a full season already to absorb the offense. He has a higher ceiling than Fink for sure but no game experience.
Right behind him is Daniels who is fresh out of high school but is generally considered to have the most talent. I am hearing whispers that the staff like him the most but not a lot of freshman hit the ground running.
USC has a soft landing spot against UNLV where they can probably see who is ready and who isn’t but after that there are two tough road tests against what should be strong defense. Right now they have quantity at QB but we are not sure about quality.
USC Trojans Prediction: 9-3
The Trojans get Cal and Oregon State but this is a tough schedule overall.
UNLV should be a gimme but back to back games at Stanford and Texas are going to be tough…plus they could wear them.
They are on the road against Arizona, Utah and UCLA then next three best teams in the PAC 12 South. They can win them all but especially UCLA could be tricky late in the year.
If they are actually in the race for a playoff spot the Trojans are hosting their annual tilt with Notre Dame. That is a great chance to get a win and command some attention.
2018 USC Trojans Football Schedule
- 9/1/18 4:00 PM ET UNLV
- 9/8/18 8:30 PM ET @Stanford
- 9/15/18 8:00 PM ET @Texas
- 9/21/18 10:30 PM ET Washington State
- 9/29/18 TBD @Arizona
- 10/13/18 TBD Colorado
- 10/20/18 TBD @Utah
- 10/27/18 TBD Arizona State
- 11/3/18 TBD @Oregon State
- 11/10/18 TBD California
- 11/17/18 TBD @UCLA
- 11/24/18 TBD Notre Dame
What do you think about our 2018 USC Trojans predictions? Please leave us a comment below telling us how you think they’ll do in 2018!
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