USC Trojans To Get Redemption vs. Aggies - College Football ATS Week 2 Picks

USC Trojans At The Field

Joe Catalano

Friday, September 9, 2016 8:26 PM UTC

Friday, Sep. 9, 2016 8:26 PM UTC

After an embarrassing 52-6 loss to the Alabama Crimson Tide, the USC Trojans (0-1) must dust themselves off and get back to work in week 2. Read on to read what our expert's free college football pick.

Utah State Aggies vs USC Trojans
Kickoff is set for Saturday, September 10th at 2:00 p.m. EST at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. According to top rated online sportsbook 5Dimes, the Trojans are a 16 1/2 point betting favorite and the total for the game is listed at 59 1/2 on the College Football Odds Board. USC can ill-afford to risk going 0-2 or this season will be over before it even really started. The pressure is certainly on USC in this spot.


Give the Trojans A Pass?
We have to remember that USC was facing the top team in the nation and on their turf. In this game, the Trojans were outgained 465-194 yardage-wise. USC was also held without a touchdown in a game for the first time in 19 years and this was the most lopsided loss for USC in 50 years! What really has to be disappointing to the Trojan backers is that this was against a virtually inexperienced Alabama Crimson Tide team. The only way to go is up and the level of opposition is much lower in the Aggies.


Capable of More Production
USC is inexperienced at the quarterback position with junior, Max Browne, as Browne has only attempted 48 passes in his collegiate career. Week 1 was very disappointing for Browne as he went 14 of 29 for 101 yards and 1 INT, but it also didn't help Browne's cause that the Trojans offensive line allowed 3 sacks and 1000 yard receiver, JuJu Smith-Schuster, had a really poor game with just 9 yards receiving and being targeted 5 times with just 1 reception.

Browne will need to build a chemistry with Smith-Schuster, who caught 89 passes for 1454 yards and 10 TD's last season, but the star receiver must eliminate drops and get open. While I don't have full confidence in Max Browne as a quarterback, look for JuJu Smith-Schuster to be a much bigger factor in this game as he's not facing a top-notch Alabama defense.

We'll also see USC show more of a ground game as sophomore running back, Ronald Jones II carried the ball last week just 7 times for 46 yards and the 46 yards coming on one run. Last season, Jones II had a very successful freshman season as he rushed for 987 yards and 8 TDs.

Look for USC to regain their composure in front of their hometown fans, but it will take some time for Max Browne to get in the flow of this offense.


Can USC Stop Devante Mays?
Utah State is coming off of a very different experience in their 1st game of the season as they destroyed the Weber State Wildcats, 45-6. In this game, senior running back, Devante Mays, had a monster game as he rushed for 208 yards and 3 TDs. Mays accomplished this on healthy 11.6 yards per carry. Expect Mays to be somewhat effective in this game, but don't expect another 200-yard game. Last season, Mays rushed for nearly 1000 yards and will look to take advantage of a USC defense whose confidence has been shaken up.


Efficiency At It's Best
Utah State won't receive mass production from their starting quarterback, Kent Myers, but Myers is a quarterback that's efficient passing-wise and doesn't turn the ball over. These two factors are keys in a quarterback being successful. Last season, Myers had 16 TD's and 3 INT's and his numbers weren't overwhelming against Weber State, but he led the offense well as the running game was the key to the Aggies' success.

Expect Utah State to take a similar approach in this game, but will they be as successful against a team in USC who will be looking to pour it on after a week 1 disaster?

For our college football expert pick, I believe that Trojans will find redemption.


Free NCAAF Pick: USC Trojans -16 (-110) 
Best Line Offered: at 5Dimes

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