Arrow-right Camera


Barkley throws six TD passes in USC romp

Matt Barkley reached 100 career touchdown passes to pass Matt Leinart in the USC record book. (Associated Press)
Matt Barkley reached 100 career touchdown passes to pass Matt Leinart in the USC record book. (Associated Press)

LOS ANGELES – Robert Woods handed the football to Matt Barkley after he caught the Southern California quarterback’s 100th touchdown pass – and Barkley promptly tried to throw it to an official.

“I had to say, ‘No, that one is special!’ ” Woods said.

The All-American receiver really didn’t need to worry. Woods and Barkley could have gone home from the Coliseum with a whole bunch of souvenirs after a record-setting day in their prolific partnership.

Barkley threw for 298 yards and six touchdowns while establishing USC’s career record for TD passes, and Woods set a pair of school records himself in the 11th-ranked Trojans’ 50-6 victory over Colorado on Saturday.

Barkley and Woods connected on scoring throws of 39, 29, 17 and 3 yards in the first 35 minutes for USC (6-1, 4-1 Pac-12), which finally showcased its offensive might against Colorado (1-6, 1-3) after a season of mostly unintimidating performances. The two stars who stuck with the Trojans through heavy NCAA sanctions have been rewarded with lofty spots atop USC’s record book, and they savored the moment.

“It’s definitely an honor to have my name with guys like that,” said Barkley, who surpassed Matt Leinart’s USC and conference records for career TD passes. “It’s special to be able to celebrate it with Robert and the guys.”

Woods set a single-game school record for TD catches, and he passed Dwayne Jarrett on USC’s career receptions list with his 217th career catch on his third scoring grab.

“I grew up watching all those receivers, ever since I understood what USC football was,” Woods said. “It’s fun to follow in their footsteps, to be one of those great receivers.”

And though Barkley’s Heisman Trophy candidacy has all but vanished during the Trojans’ recent streak of grind-it-out games, he put up some awfully gaudy numbers against Colorado.

Barkley tied his own single-game USC mark for TD passes while going 19 for 20 to break Rick Neuheisel’s conference record for completion percentage in a game with at least 20 passes. Barkley also hit Marqise Lee and Xavier Grimble for scores, and his only incompletion was a drop by Curtis McNeal.

Woods finished with eight catches for 132 yards, blowing past Jarrett’s record midway through his junior year. Lee, who could probably threaten Woods’ marks next year, had six catches for 103 yards.

“We just saw so many things happen today,” said USC coach Lane Kiffin, who keeps an eye on statistical superlatives for his players. “We’ve been playing for 124 years here. … Just an unbelievable day.”

USC has won four straight since its only loss, at Stanford, and the Trojans’ second home game in seven weeks turned into the preseason No. 1 team’s most lopsided of the year.

Click here to comment on this story »