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USC football vs. Stanford: Time, TV schedule, game preview, score

Trojans battle Cardinal

Bryce Love #20 of the Stanford Cardinal is tackled near the goal line during the first half against the USC Trojans at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on September 9, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)
Bryce Love #20 of the Stanford Cardinal is tackled near the goal line during the first half against the USC Trojans at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on September 9, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images)

STANFORD, Calif. – After cruising past a pair of Mountain West foes last week, No. 12 USC and No. 9 Stanford meet Saturday in Palo Alto in a rematch of last season’s Pac-12 Championship Game. Freshman quarterback JT Daniels threw for 282 yards and a touchdown in USC’s 43-21 season-opening win over UNLV, while Stanford wide receiver JJ Arcega-Whiteside caught three long scoring passes from K.J. Costello in a 31-10 victory over San Diego State.

TV: 8:30 p.m. ET, FOX. LINE: Stanford -5.5

 

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Arcega-Whiteside was named Pac-12 Offensive player of the Week after catching six passes for 226 yards while San Diego State focused on stopping Heisman Trophy candidate Bryce Love, who was held to 29 yards on 18 carries after rushing for 2,118 yards last season. “It’s no secret Bryce is the best running back in the country,” Costello told reporters. “We all believe it. There were times I came to the line and there were 11 guys coming downhill to light him up. Being able to counter that is what you have to do to be a good offense.” Love looks to bounce back against USC, which has won 16 of its last 17 conference games. Daniels became the second true freshman quarterback to start an opener for USC and went 22 of 35 for 282 yards against UNLV, connecting early and often with former high school teammate Amon-Ra St. Brown, who had seven receptions for 98 yards and a score.

ABOUT USC (1-0)

Chase McGrath kicked five field goals to tie a school record against UNLV while Daniels had plenty of help from his running game as Aca'Cedric Ware rushed for 100 yards and a score and Vavae Malepeai scored two TDs. USC allowed just two sacks with redshirt freshman Brett Neilon starting at center in place of senior Toa Lobendahn, who is questionable due to a strained pectoral muscle. Cameron Smith and Isaiah Pola-Mao combined for 14 tackles while linebacker Porter Gustin had two sacks to lead the defense, which allowed 308 rushing yards against the Rebels and will need an improved effort to keep Love contained.

ABOUT STANFORD (1-0)

Costello finished 21 for 31 for a career-high 332 yards and four touchdowns against San Diego State as the Cardinal won their 11th straight home opener and improved to 24-5 against in-state opponents under coach David Shaw. Linebackers Bobby Okereke, Joey Alfieri, Sean Barton and Mustafa Branch helped limit the Aztecs to 113 passing yards while senior punter/kicker Jake Bailey forced San Diego State to start 11 of 12 possessions inside its 30-yard-line. The defense allowed a total of 263 yards but struggled to slow down Juwan Washington, who rushed 24 times for 158 yards and a TD.

EXTRA POINTS

1. USC holds a 62-32-3 series lead against Stanford – including a 31-28 win in last season’s Pac-12 title game.

2. Seven of the past 12 meetings in the series have been decided by eight points or fewer.

3. Stanford has allowed a total of 10 sacks over the past 11 games covering 308 pass attempts.

PREDICTION: Stanford 28, USC 24

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