19ºF

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

Trojans battle Sun Devils

Wide receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown #8 celebrates with tight end Tyler Petite #82 of the USC Trojans after scoring a touchdown in the fourth quarter of the game against the UNLV Rebels at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on September 1, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images)
Wide receiver Amon-Ra St. Brown #8 celebrates with tight end Tyler Petite #82 of the USC Trojans after scoring a touchdown in the fourth quarter of the game against the UNLV Rebels at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on September 1, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images)

LOS ANGELES – USC will try to bounce back from a lopsided loss at Utah when it hosts Arizona State on Saturday afternoon. The Trojans, who are tied with the Utes for first place in the Pac-12's South Division but no longer control their own destiny for a berth into the conference title game, could be without their two top quarterbacks for the contest.

TV: 3:30 p.m. ET, ABC/ESPN2 LINE: USC -6.5

 

(function(d, s, id) {var js,ijs=d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];if(d.getElementById(id))return;js=d.createElement(s);js.id=id;js.src="//embed.scribblelive.com/widgets/embed.js";ijs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, ijs);}(document, 'script', 'scrbbl-js'));

JT Daniels, a true freshman who has started every game for the Trojans this season, began the week in concussion protocol after leaving the 41-28 loss at Utah. Sophomore backup Matt Fink, who completed 6-of-7 passes for 43 yards and a touchdown and also rushed for 21 yards on four carries, is out after suffering three broken ribs which means unproven redshirt freshman Jack Sears was working with the first team on Tuesday with sophomore walk-on Holden Thomas the backup. "It's really up to the doctors," USC coach Clay Helton said when asked is he expected Daniels to play against the Sun Devils. "I get a report every morning and every person's different (on concussion protocol). When he's cleared, he's cleared. Obviously he's not practicing. ... I'd rather lose a game than hurt a kid." Arizona State, which is in last place in the South Division and comes in off back-to-back losses to then No. 21 Colorado (28-21) and Stanford (20-13) and has lost three in a row to the Trojans by an average of 27 points.

ABOUT ARIZONA STATE (3-4, 1-3 Pac-12)

First-year coach Herm Edwards is concerned that his team, which has 27 players from the southern California area who will be playing in front of family and friends, might be a little too fired up to play Saturday. "This is always an emotion game on both sides," Edwards said. "We're talking to our guys about that, and I'm sure coach Helton is telling his team the same thing. It's good to play with emotion but you can't let the game get the best of you." Quarterback Manny Wilkins ranks third in the Pac-12 in total offense (285.3 yards per game) and has a highly-rated NFL wide receiver prospect to throw to in N'Keal Harry who has 42 receptions for 572 yards and five TDs while sophomore Eno Benjamin ranks second in the conference in rushing with 753 yards on 137 carries and seven scores.

ABOUT USC (4-3, 3-2)

Daniels, the reigning national prep player of the year after leading Mater Dei High School in Santa Ana, Calif., to the mythical national championship, ranks just 12th in pass efficiency in the Pac-12 (125.3), completing 124-of-218 passes for 1,629 yards, eight TDs and seven interceptions and is expected to play Saturday. USC, once known as Tailback U for producing Heisman Trophy winning tailbacks such as Marcus Allen, O.J. Simpson, Mike Garrett and Charles White, ranks just 10th in the Pac-12 in rushing (116.9 ypg) with senior Aca'Cedric Ware the top rusher with an average of 51.1 yards per game which ranks 12th in the conference. The Trojans rank eighth in the Pac-12 in total defense allowing an average of 387.4 yards per game but lost star linebacker Porter Gustin, who leads the league in sacks (1.17 per game) and is fourth in tackles for loss (1.67), for the season with a broken foot in a 31-20 win over Colorado on Oct. 13.

EXTRA POINTS

1. Helton is a perfect 19-0 in the Los Angeles Coliseum as USC head coach.

2. Benjamin set a school single-game rushing record with 312 yards on 30 carries in a 52-24 win over Oregon State on Sept. 29.

3. No Arizona State running back has lost a fumble in 681 consecutive carries dating back to the 2016 season -- a streak that covers 25 consecutive games.

PREDICTION: USC 24, Arizona State 17

More college football scores