For a moment, it appeared No. 25 USC’s defense was going to choke 2010 style again with Minnesota driving the field down 19-17 to the Trojans with two minutes to play in the game. In the event of a Golden Gopher comeback — UM had scored 14 unanswered points in the second half — it would have put a serious spoiler on the career day for USC quarterback Matt Barkley and receiver Robert Woods.
But, it didn’t happen; the Trojans defense nabbed an interception and the Men of Troy hung on by two.
Together, Barkley and Woods connected for a school-record 17 times for 177 yards and three touchdowns. In all, Barkley had 304 yards through the air on 34 completions (another school record), but once again struggled at times in the fourth quarter.
Chalk it up to poor execution, offseason rust, whatever, USC still has to get better late in games. If Barkley can match his first half offensive production in the fourth quarter, look out all the preseason Heisman dark horse hype he’s been receiving to start to come to some kind of fruition.
Same for Woods, who is only a sophomore. The Trojans like to throw the ball and Woods is emerging as a great target with even better body control.
If nothing else, the two should be a fun QB-WR combination throughout the season.