The next team up to try and knock off USC from it's lofty perch at No. 2 in the country is the Stanford Cardinal. It's going to be a difficult task, and the Cardinal will need plenty to go right in order to win. Here's one key to an upset, provided by SB Nation's Stanford blog Rule of Tree. It involves making sure to limit yards after catch for USC receivers Marqise Lee and Robert Woods.
Tackling in the secondary. We all know Lee and Woods are incredible talents at WR and are responsible for nearly 75% of the passing game production (37 catches, 399 yards and 8 TDs combined through the first two weeks). Many of those catches are short routes in single coverage and they are able to break tackles and turn those underneath passes into huge gains. That means CBs Barry Browning, Terrence Brown, and the rest of the Cardinal secondary are going to have be sure tacklers and limit the yards after the catch.
The Stanford secondary played well against Duke on Saturday and did a decent job on Woods and Lee in last year's game.
Other keys include pressure on Matt Barkley, the USC quarterback, and scoring red-zone TDs on offense.
Talk about the game with Stanford football fans at Rule of Tree. Talk about the game with USC football fans at Conquest Chronicles.