On the heels of last week’s college football drama, when four ranked teams were upset, the third week on the gridiron saw that number go up by one with five ranked teams going down in defeat.
None was larger than Stanford taking down USC, by a score of 21-14, who was ranked #2 in the nation. This is the fourth consecutive time the Cardinal has defeated the Trojans and fifth time in the last six years.
Matt Barkley and Lane Kiffin are each winless vs. the Cardinal who punched the Trojans in the mouth last night imposing their on the former #2 ranked team.
Stanford running back Stephan Taylor looked like the best player on the field accounting for 213 yards of total offense and two touchdowns-one a 59-yard run in the first quarter. Taylor has had a solid career in Palo Alto to this point, but exploded on the national scene with his performance last night.
The two most glaring indictments of the USC offense as the 1-13 conversion rate on third downs, and the paltry 26 yards rushing yards, managing to get only 17 yards on 13 carries from Penn State transfer Silas Redd.
USC entered the season as the #1 ranked team in the nation with a national title in their sights and with the presumptive Heisman winner in Barkley, but after the loss to Stanford the Trojans will tumble in the rankings and Barkley’s Heisman hopes have been severely blemished.
This win proves that Stanford was more than just Andrew Luck and the defense was deserving of the game ball after Saturday night’s victory. Barkley threw two interceptions and zero touchdowns for the player who entered the game leading the nation in touchdown passes.
After the game, Kiffin said the loss was not the end of the world.
Last year, Alabama managed to make it to the national championship game with a loss on their record, so perhaps he is right and the Trojans can regroup and find themselves in the championship game picture.
The Trojans were exposed Saturday night at Stanford and will need to get lucky to see their preseason dreams become a reality.
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Patrick is a diehard Chicago sports and avid college football fan, and the host of “The Wake-up Call,” a weekly sports show on Sportstownchicago.com Wednesday mornings from 8-10. View his show’s website here.