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Christian Caple’s Keys to the WSU-USC Game

What went right

WSU’s defense made USC’s passing offense look completely helpless, as it held Trojans quarterbacks Cody Kessler and Max Wittek to just 54 yards passing. The Trojans’ only score was a touchdown that was the result of a 22-yard drive set up by a fumble recovery.

What went wrong

This version of the Cougars’ offense looked nothing like it did last week, and more like it did at times last season. As in: they weren’t very good. Connor Halliday completed 26 of 38 passes for 215 yards, but threw two interceptions, lost a fumble, and received little help from the running game.

Turning point

Dom Williams broke a tackle behind the first-down marker, then sprinted to USC’s 30-yard line for a 49-yard gain that set WSU up for its go-ahead field goal try. Andrew Furney nailed it, and the Cougars’ defense used a pick by Damante Horton on the next possession to seal it.

Difference makers

Tre Madden was the most productive offensive player on the field, taking 31 carries for 152 yards. The freshman converted a key fourth-down on USC’s only scoring possession of the first three quarters, and was really the Trojans’ only source of consistent offense. Horton’s two interceptions, one returned 70 yards for a score, were enormous.

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