I’m very disappointed in the performance of USC quarterback Matt Barkley as well as coaches Lane Kiffin and Monte Kiffin and the USC Trojans. I’m shocked that a school of USC’s stature isn’t able to put a better football team on the field. Why do they put a slow running back on the field? Can’t any of their defensive backs play man-to-man coverages?
Barkley is as overrated as they get. His accuracy is flat out terrible. He has trouble reading coverages which makes him hanging on to the football too long, plus it’s a wonder that Robert Woods doesn’t just throw up his hands in disgust and walk off the field.
In the first quarter, Barkley missed a Woods when he got behind the Arizona State secondary on a post route for what would have been a 70-plus yard touchdown. Why overthrow him? Why not put some air under the ball and let him fight for it, but don’t overthrow him and give him no chance to make a play?
Later in the first half with the Trojans inside the Sun Devils red zone, Woods was wide open on a slant route, but Barkley waited too long to throw the football and he also didn’t put any zip on it. The defender cut underneath Woods and knocked it down before he could get his hands on it.
Finally in the first half, Barkley missed a wide open Woods on a corner route with the Trojans in the red zone and it cost USC another chance for a touchdown. The announcer said the Trojans were struggling to put the ball into the endzone but it was really Barkley who was struggling with his accuracy and therefore costing his team touchdowns.
USC went in a halftime trailing 21-9, when they could easily have been leading or even with Arizona State if Barkley had been decent with his accuracy throwing the football.
The awful play of Barkley continued in the second half, because he added interceptions to his incompletions. He threw two costly interceptions in the second half and they cost the Trojans dearly. They need to consider sitting him down. He is totally overrated.
I’ve never seen a coach settle for field goals so often. Quite a few times during the game, I saw Kiffin throw his hands up and call a running play with USC in position to score touchdowns. Why not just put the ball up and give Woods a chance to go up and take the ball away from a defender? He might also draw a pass interference penalty?
Instead of that Kiffin put the ball on the ground by giving it to the incredibly slow Tyler and settled for a field goal.
Kiffin has shown himself to be a mediocre play caller at best. It makes you wonder how he got the job in the first place once he starts calling plays.
The most disappointing criticism I have of the USC coaching staff isn’t for Lane Kiffin, it’s for former NFL whiz and current USC defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin. With all of the talent he has, how can Kiffin sit in that Tampa Two defense without giving his players a chance to challenge the opposing quarterback?
They have the ability in their secondary to play some man-to-man coverages and mix up the look to challenge opposing quarterbacks. Instead of challenging the opponents, he sits in the Tampa Two, so that everybody knows exactly where each defender is going to be.
Forgive me for not drinking the Kiffin-koolaid but everybody except the Kiffin family knows that you play man-to-man and you’re going to make the quarterback pull the ball down and so that your quality pass rush can get to the quarterback.
If you back off every play in the Tampa Two and give them the short throws, young quarterbacks are going to take it and you’re not forcing them to be good. If Kiffin were to play some man-to-man with press coverage, it would make the quarterback pull the ball down and give the pass rush a chance to get there.
There’s a reason that SEC does a better job defensively than USC. They get up in your face and play some man-to-man. Checkout Alabama’s Nick Saban and see how many times he has his defenders putting mental and physical pressure on quarterbacks. Kiffin has got to do that now.
I also want him to take the linebackers off the field more often.
Why are they playing a fullback at halfback by making Marc Tyler a starter? He’s much too slow. This guy takes an hour to get to the hole. There’s no way in the world they’re going to have a consistent running game with a back as slow as Tyler.
He couldn’t shine the shoes of his father whom I’m played against at USC and for years when we were both in the NFL. This young man has no quickness, but that’s not his fault. It’s Lane Kiffin’s fault that he is on the football field.