Re: USC v OSU Mark II
OSU's offensive line against the USC defensive line:
OSU has a very talented offensive line. Justin Boren adds to it's strength at the guard position and he has taken charge of his O-line. Two sophomore 5-star lineman, along with Boren will lead the way up front which also features an experienced senior tackle and a junior guard opposite Boren. This line averages 4.2 stars per player, and they're a very athletic group who plans to make every OSU fan forget about last year's debacle on the offensive front. They average 1.2 varsity letters (mainly because of Boren's transfer and ineligibility last season and a sophomore who didn't play enough to earn a letter last season).
USC has a very talented defensive line to counter what OSU plans to bring toward them. They have 1 senior and 1 junior along with 2 sophomores there. They average 4.3 stars per player, along with 1.8 varsity letters. So, the matchup between these two lines is pretty close. Should be fun to watch.
USC's offensive line against the OSU defensive line:
Alright, this could get interesting. USC will feature arguably the BEST offensive line in the nation. They're experienced, and extremely hungry. They know they have to perform well, as the offense breaks in a new QB. The running may need to step up to help them win a few games this season, and USC has no shortage of 5-star running backs. This line averages 4.2 stars as well, but the difference is experience. 3 seniors lead this line which also has a junior and a sophomore starting. They average 2.2 varsity letters per player.
OSU's defensive line has received a lot of hype this season. They're expected to be stronger and faster than last year's squad. However if someone were to credit this line with bing the fastest ever at OSU, I would have to argue against it. Nonetheless, these guys are studs in their own right, and will give plenty of O-lines problems. These guys have experience to go along with the experience on the USC O-line. The senior and 3 juniors average 3.8 stars and have earned 2 varsity letters. This will be their biggest test of the season, but they're hoping their speed and athleticism match the strength of that mighty USC offensive line. This is going to be fun to watch too.
Outside the lines, I think the next matchup will be equally as interesting. The OSU wide receivers against the USC defensive backfield, and vice versa. So, let's take a gander.
USC WR versus OSU DB
Although I can only guess who will be up against who (one-on-one), I'm going to have to give a slight edge to OSU here. Top-to-bottom again. I think if Chekwa has to defend against Ronald Johnson, he'll have his hands full. Damian Williams is pretty darn good too, but I think Chekwa matches up better with him. Amos or Torrence matches up better with Johnson. Either way, I have to give the edge to USC here. OSU starting DBs average 3.3 stars (3.5 at CB), 2.5 varsity letters and are veteran laden with 3 seniors and 1 junior. USC's starting WRs average 4.5 stars, 1.5 varsity letters and both are juniors.
OSU WR vs. USC DB
Alright, here's where it gets tricky for USC. Sanzenbacher is really the only known when it comes to OSU's receiver corps. Many "experts" are underestimating this group of highly talented receivers. Sanzenbacher is the slowest of the bunch at around 4.5 forty speed. Remember earlier I said a handful of Buckeyes ran sub 4.4? Well, here they are. I expect Brandon Saine will be used in some formations as a receiver, and he's a 4.3ish guy. I just have a feeling USC's DBs are going to be chasing these guys around the field all day, and if one of these guys gets a leg up on them...it's over. Joey Galloway had tons of speed...imagine 3 Joey Galloways lining up simultaneously. That's what OSU has to offer. OSU averages 4.5 stars at WR along with 1.5 varsity letters. I heard USC was planning to use Mayes as a spy on Pryor. Umm, not too sure I'd do that, but if that's what Carroll wants to do...I did say he was a pretty darn good coach. So we'll see how that turns out. USC's DBs average 4 stars, 3.3 varsity letters and are veteran laden as well with 3 seniors and a junior.
So where did we get with all of this? Talent wise, I'd have to give the edge to USC. Speed wise, to OSU. Experience wise, USC. Then there's that night time home field advantage for OSU. Trust me, it will be an advantage. The bottom line, this is going to be a great game. It will, without a doubt, be the toughest game for both teams all season. No other team on either team's schedule matches up the way these two squads do. The winner of this one should go far, and if they don't, it will be their own fault. They are better than every other team they will play.
Fearless prediction: OSU-27 USC-23
Official Steelersfever Arians Nuthugger