Marqise Lee was quick to make an impact and Silas Redd has led the USC running game to help the Trojans take a 21-14 in to the break against Oregon State.
USC’s offense has had some easy plays against an Oregon State defense that has been lost at times and lacks pursuit other times. Allowing Lee to break free in a wide open field on USC’s first play proved to be costly, to the tune of a 71-yard touchdown for an early lead. Redd leads USC with 85 rushing yards but Javorious Allen has stepped in to score twice on the ground.
Oregon State dug the 14-0 hole in the first quarter but wasted little time in storming back in the second quarter. Sean Mannion connected with Brandin Cooks for a 27-yard touchdown to get the home team on the scoreboard and then 14 seconds later Oregon State’s Ryan Murphy had intercepted a Cody Kessler pass and returned it down the right sideline for a 42-yard pick-six that needed to be upheld by a video review to determine if he had broken the goal line while in the air. He did, and the game was tied at 14-14.
Kessler and the Trojans kept their cool though and marched 75 yards in ten plays and capped the drive with the second touchdown run by Allen in the first half.
Oregon State’s offense may have been cracked last week by Stanford. USC’s defense has risen to the occasion so far, but must keep it going to hold off Oregon State’s potent offense after the break. USC was unable to do that against Arizona State earlier in the season, and Arizona made things interesting in the second half of a game as well. Oregon State is only down one score at home, but the offense has to start playing better against a solid USC defense.
Maryland athletic director Kevin Anderson will not be a candidate for the same position at Texas.
Anderson released a public statement Friday evening to put to rest the rumors connecting him to the Texas vacancy and to ease the Maryland fan base.
“I must confess I am humbled to be mentioned in connection with such a position but more importantly, I feel it speaks volumes to the outstanding progress we have made at the University of Maryland and to the new heights our athletic department is destined for in the future,” Anderson’s statement says.
“Let me be clear, I am not pursuing any other professional opportunities at other institutions. I am steadfast in my commitment to the University of Maryland.”
Anderson helped lead Maryland through negotiations to leave the ACC and join the Big Ten, a realignment change that will take place next summer. The cash-strapped athletics program has had to make some sacrifices in recent years and a move to the Big Ten figures to help dig the school out of financial trouble in time. If Anderson really is staying put, the decision comes at a great time. A school preparing for a conference change needs stability in the leadership positions off the field, especially at the athletic director position. Having Anderson stay put in College Park will help Maryland focus on the process of leaving the ACC and getting started in the Big Ten.
Earlier this week Ohio State’s Gene Smith said he is staying at Ohio State. Earlier in the month Louisville’s Tom Jurich said he was not interested in the Texas job. Previous reports have suggested West Virginia AD Oliver Luck, who will be a member of the College Football Playoff’s selection committee, is the leading candidate for the job.
Helmet sticker to CSN Baltimore.
Marqise Lee is in the starting line-up for USC tonight as the Trojans are visiting Oregon State. He immediately made an impact on the game as well.
After Oregon State’s opening drive field goal attempt was partially blocked and fell well short of the uprights, USC needed just one play to get Lee involved. USC quarterback Cody Kessler dropped back and found a wide open Lee down field and nobody came close to stopping him from getting to the end zone. The play went down as a 71-yard touchdown pass from Kessler to Lee on the first play of the game for USC’s offense.
Lee was upgraded from questionable to probable as the week progressed, and USC is certainly happy to have their biggest playmaker back on the field in good health. Lee had been hindered by a sprained left knee.
USC leads Oregon State 7-0 early in the first quarter.