Friday, January 19, 2018

Oregon at USC

Oregon's high-powered offense faces an efficient USC attack when the teams meet in Los Angeles in Week 9.

Oregon offense vs. USC defense
• Oregon's spread-option attack is a nightmare to prepare for, and it won't help that this is the first true option offense USC has faced with Monte Kiffin as defensive coordinator. Kiffin faces a couple big challenges aside from simply trying to contain game-breaking athletes like dual-threat QB Darron Thomas and speedy RB LaMichael James. The first is the pace of Oregon's offense. The Ducks signal plays from the sideline and rarely take longer than 25 seconds from the end of one play to the next snap, which all but eliminates in-series personnel substitutions for the defense. This tempo can be exhausting for all 11 defenders on the field, especially for the 300-pounders up front. The second challenge is the complexity of the scheme. The Trojans are coming off an open date that gave Kiffin an extra week to prepare, but from unique formations to the array of pre-snap motions to the various option principles (shotgun zone-read, zone-read, veer, etc.), Oregon's offense can create sensory overload for opposing defenders. The Trojans have shown promise during their last couple of outings but the depth and the discipline of Kiffin's group will be put to the ultimate test this week.