Southern California Trojans
Saturday, September 8 • 3:30 p.m. • ABC/ESPN2
MetLife Stadium (82,500/FieldTurf)
East Rutherford, N.J.
ABC/ESPN2 — Sean McDonough, Chris Spielman and Quint Kessenich
WTKW-FM 99.5 (flagship)
THE GAME • NEW YORK’S COLLEGE CLASSIC
Saturday’s game will be the fourth meeting between Syracuse and Southern California … The schools last met last season in Los Angeles, when USC was a 38-17 winner … The teams also played in the 1990 Kickoff Classic in East Rutherford, N.J., with USC taing a 34-16 victory … The Trojans have won all three meetings in the series … The last time a BIG EAST team faced the No. 1 team in the Associated Press poll was Sept. 16, 2006, when top-ranked Ohio State defeated Cincinnati 37-7 … The last win by a BIG EAST team against the nation’s No. 1 team was Oct. 7, 2000, when Miami edged Florida State 27-24.
Doug Marrone (Syracuse ’91)
17-21, fourth season
Syracuse came up on the short end of a wild 42-41 shootout against Northwestern at the Carrier Dome last Saturday … The Orange trailed 35-13 midway through the third quarter, but rallied behind four second-half touchdown passes by QB Ryan Nassib to take a 41-35 lead with 2:40 left … Northwestern answered with a 75-yard drive capped by a touchdown with 44 seconds left to escape with the win … Nassib enters Saturday’s game as the national leader in passing yards (482) and total offense (512 yards) after he completed 45 of 66 passes against Northwestern … Nassib tied the BIG EAST single-game record for completions, initially set by former Louisville signal-caller Brian Brohm against the Orange in 2007 … Nassib set school records for attempts, completions and passing yards… WR Marcus Sales was the top receiver with 11 receptions for 117 yards and a touchdown against the Wildcats … Syracuse finished with 596 yards of offense against Northwestern and enters ninth nationally in total yards … LB Dan Vaughan had 1.5 sacks, while LB Marquis Spruill had eight tackles, two tackles for loss and a sack against Northwestern.
2/2 SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA (1-0)
Lane Kiffin (Fresno State ’98)
19-7, third season at USC
26-13, fourth season as collegiate head coach
The Trojans are in a stretch in which they play just two of their first six games at home … USC’s offense returns nine starters, including a 3,500-yard passer (QB Matt Barkley) two 1,000-yard receivers (WR Robert Woods and WR Marqise Lee) and a 1,000-yard rusher (RB Curtis McNeal) … On top of that, former Penn State RB Silas Redd is on the squad after surpassing 1,000 yards for the Nittany Lions last year … USC is in the first year of an NCAA-imposed three-year reduction in scholarships … The Trojans are eligible for postseason play this season after a two-year ban … The Trojans have won 11 national championships and have had six Heisman Trophy winners … Barkley will celebrate his 22nd birthday Saturday … Barkley threw four touchdown passes in the season-opening 49-10 win against Hawaii … Lee, meanwhile, had 10 catches for 197 receiving yards and two touchdowns to go with 100 yards on kickoff returns against Hawaii … USC has scored at least 30 points in nine straight games.