SALT LAKE CITY – Matt Barkley passed for 303 yards and three touchdowns, including an 83-yarder to Marqise Lee in the fourth quarter, and No. 13 Southern California came back from a two-touchdown deficit to beat Utah 38-28 in a Pac-12 football game Thursday night.
Utah (2-3, 0-2 Pac-12) forced turnovers 1 minute, 16 seconds apart to open the game, including a play by Nate Fakahafua to score from 8 yards out after stripping the ball from Barkley after a bad snap.
But the Trojans (4-1, 2-1) turned the tables in the fourth, scoring twice in a span of less than 3 minutes to turn a three-point game into victory in their first trip to Salt Lake City in 95 years.
Barkley connected with Lee with 12:10 remaining, then cornerback Nickell Robey intercepted a pass by Jon Hays and returned it 38 yards for a touchdown.
Lee finished with 12 catches for 192 yards. The teams combined for 736 yards of offense and 222 yards in penalties.
Utah led 14-0 less than 3 minutes in, and was up 21-10 with 8:54 left in the half after Hays passed 18 yards to DeVonte Christopher, electrifying the fourth-largest crowd in stadium history (46,037).
But Barkley answered with scoring passes to Randall Telfer and Robert Woods as USC took a 24-21 lead into the break.
The Trojans scored 28 straight before Utah put together a late drive.
Before the season the game was being touted as a possible showdown for the Pac-12 South title. But then Stanford upset then-No. 2-ranked USC on Sept. 15 and Utah lost by 30 to Arizona State the following week.