Dedicated to the HATRED of all things trOJan


The Falk Is Our Star — What the Falk happened to the vaunted trojans??  #5 (not for long) u$c gets upset by Washington State 30-27, as Cougar QB Luke Falk totally outshines troy QB Sam Darnold, who fumbles the game away on the final drive

For 3 hours, TV viewers had to listen to two ESPN announcers singing the praises of over-rated trojan Quarterback Sam Darnold.  The clueless broadcasters made misinformed comments all night, and missed calls which they never explained.  But the main theme of their agenda-driven drivel was trumpeting the “clutch-ness” of Darnold.  Darnold is so cool under pressure, he always comes through when the chips are down, he always gets it done, he knows how to win…  And then with less than two minutes to play and the trojans in need of just a field goal to tie the game, Darnold chokes away the game, as the announcers choke on their words of praise.

Darnold, who threw for only a measly 164 yards, with no TD’s and his 8th Interception in 5 games, was trying to avoid the rush, and weakly made an arm motion in an attempt to intentionally ground the ball, but the ball fell out of his grasp for a game-clinching fumble.  This 30-27 loss, which for the time being knocks the trojans out of playoff contention, was NO fluke.  The Cougars outplayed the trojans in every facet of the game.  Luke Falk threw for 340 yards and 2 TD’s, and the pass-first Cougars also had success on the ground, scoring on a 1-yard run and getting a huge 35-yard run that led to the game-winning field goal.

The Cougars outgained sc 462-327, despite troy scoring on an 86-yard run on which sc RB Ronald Jones was never touched.  Sc also had the benefit of a tipped Cougar pass being intercepted in the shadow of the WSU end zone, but sc could muster only 3 points off that gift turnover.

SC’s first drive looked SOOOOOO easy as they marched down the field and scored a TD to make it 7-3 early, and it looked like a rout was in store, but maybe they got complacent, because after that, the Cougars played harder, and out-hustled them, and obviously WANTED IT MORE.  Sc does have one excuse — by halftime, they had three starting Offensive Lineman out injured, so that could explain their lack of a running game (only about 40 yards total outside of that 86-yard TD), and it might also explain the pressure on Darnold, including the game-deciding sack-fumble.

Darnold is usually so amazing at improvising when his protection breaks down.  He is so elusive, and has a Brett Hundley-like knack for sliding away from pressure to buy time and find a safe space.  But this year he has been forcing throws into coverage, and just not piling up the numbers that were needed to keep him in the Heisman race.  Despite the kiss-ass announcers, he was not only not the best QB in the Nation last night, he wasn’t even the best QB in Pullman.  NOT.  EVEN.  CLOSE.

So sure, the 1-loss trojans could rebound and still wind up in the playoffs.  Many, many teams have made the playoffs/big BCS bowls with 1 loss, including Washington last year.  But with the erratic and inaccurate way Darnold is playing and throwing, and with the injuries, and with all these games of barely scraping by while never living up to expectations, something will have to change quite a bit for sc to get back into the race.

5-0 WSU may even have a better shot, but I would be amazed if they continue to win.  They dropped so many passes, and did not look like they were in a league with the Alabamas and Clemsons of the world.  So I doubt if the Pac-12 will be participating in the playoffs this year.  No big deal to me (since UCLA is not in the mix), as long as Fig. Tech stays on the outside looking in.

Speaking of looking in, here are 56 more UCLA Spirit Squad photos from the Texas A&M game.  My remaining shots from the Hawaii game will have to wait until after I post from the Colorado game.  Reminder:  Click on the photos to enlarge them.

"USC HAS NO-FALK INSURANCE" was published on September 30th, 2017 and is listed in News from the Dark Side, UCLA/usc/Cheerleader Photos.

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