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SC didn't trail in the Stanford game until the 4th quarter, and trailed Arizona for only about half the game, but folks are mad that Kiffin is too conservative and runs too much.
After the Trojans went up 28-13, Barkley was 0-3 on the next two possesions that resulted in 3-and-outs. On the five straight possessions that SC went scoreless in the 3rd and 4th quarters, Barkley was 4-11 and sacked twice. Meaning, only 4 of 13 pass plays resulted in positive yardage. On those five possessions: three 3-and-outs, one fumble, one turnover on downs.
So, it's not like Kiffin was neglecting a flawless passing game when he chose to run during that stretch. And it's not like the run was completely ineffective either. Not including the sacks, there were six rushes that totaled 30 yards. The problem is that the run was ineffective in securing first downs: two resulted in a punt and one a turnover on downs. (That's not to mention the fumble lost on a 2nd down.)
In the cases where SC punted, the Trojans were backed up in their own territory and leading 28-13. On the first possession, Barkley bypassed the underneath receiver at the first down line and instead missed an outstretched Woods. On the second possession, Barkley took a shot downfield but missed a wide open Woods. After the near pick-six that followed, I don't really mind SC running on 3rd and 15 from its own 8, up 28-13 deep into the 3rd quarter. Barkley already had thrown two picks in the game and, including the previously play, had nearly been picked off three other times.
There is a lot of blame to throw around for this loss, but I don't believe that conservative playcalling was a major factor. When SC did score again, it was on a 10-yard run by Redd.
This post was edited by Bill Maher on 10/28/2012 at 4:42 PM
You're not telling the whole story. Both running backs were hurt and out of the game at one point against Stanford. The 3rd DJ Morgan was still injured. We couldn't run anyways as we rushed for 27 yards on 29 carries. In both games the backs put the ball on the ground.
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