Game One wrap-up: USC 49, Hawaii 10
The eighth meeting between USC and Hawaii came and went without unexpected results. The mismatch on paper translated to a mismatch on the field, as the Trojans asserted themselves early and never looked back.
The tone was set in the first fourteen seconds, when Matt Barkley took the first snap from scrimmage. A short pass became a long gain, and 75-yards later, Marqise Lee pranced across a painted end zone as the band played “Fight On”. It was a play simple by design, and as easy as pitch and catch. And it was the first of many big plays, as whenever the nation’s No. 1 takes the field against an unranked rebuilding underdog.
It was a powerful opening statement, both for the game and the season. The Trojans survived a firefight with the Warriors in 2010, telling an early tale of a top-25 ranking that was more hype and less deserved. Such is not the case in 2012, at least not by early perception. USC proved the offense as good as advertised, and a defense stingier than Hawaii faced on its home field in Honolulu.
Matt Barkley- 22 of 38, 357 yards, 4 TDs, 0 INT
Marqise Lee- 10 receptions, 197 yards, 1 TD
Robert Woods- 6 receptions, 42 yards, 2 TD
Our summer was filled with names and expectations, and each failed to disappoint. Barkley showed no signs of rust from the long layoff, and his receivers proved to be unguardable. The much heralded Silas Redd would average 6.2 yards per carry in his Trojan debut, highlighted by a 31-yard touchdown sprint on a fourth-down play designed to gain 2.
USC built a 20-0 lead after the first quarter, while Hawaii managed just 41 yards of total offense in the same period. It stretched to 35-0 by the half, with the Trojans firmly in command. The Warriors would finally score in the third, but celebration was short-lived. Marqise Lee would strike again, returning the ensuing kickoff 100-yards for his second touchdown of the day.
The 49-10 victory may be enough to satisfy voters and secure Southern California’s current position in upcoming polls. But it probably isn’t enough to satisfy skeptics, with the first opponent having little to offer in form of a challenge. We will learn more about USC as the days move forward and foes increase in strength. But the first look is one of dominance, projecting a hungry team looking to feast each week. Syracuse is served on next week’s platter, as we take another step and continue to fight on.
- In two starts vs Hawaii, Matt Barkley has thrown for 614 yards, 9 TDs, and 0 INTs
- USC has scored 30+ points in 9 consecutive games
- The Trojan defense recorded 2 INTs (H. Pollard, J. Shaw), 5 sacks, and 10 tackles for loss in the opener
- Marqise Lee finished with 282 all-purpose yards, which is tops in the nation for the opening weekend.