Syracuse passing attack a stern test

Trojans looking for starters at cornerback and left guard against the Orange

Updated: September 15, 2011, 12:23 PM ET
By Kyle Williams | We Are SC
LOS ANGELES -- Heading into Saturday's game with visiting Syracuse after last week's less-than-stellar performance against Utah, USC's secondary looks to be the big question mark. Fittingly, Syracuse and pass-happy quarterback Ryan Nassib come to town. Through two games, Nassib has completed 75 percent of his passes for almost 500 yards and six touchdowns, with one interception. The 6-foot-2, 229-pound junior also is among Syracuse's career top 10 for passing yards, touchdown passes and completions.

[+] EnlargeTorin Harris
Joe Andras/WeAreSC.comTorin Harris has made big plays late for the Trojans, but his play in the rest of the game has put his job in jeopardy.
Nassib has two good-looking receivers to throw to: Alec Lemon and Van Chew. The 6-2, 202-pound Lemon is ranked ninth in the nation for yards per reception with an average of 18.6 yards per catch. Chew has 12 receptions and is averaging 16.2 yards per reception.

With USC's secondary in flux, the Trojans still have playmakers in T.J. McDonald and Nickell Robey. Considering the threats that the Syracuse passing game possesses, they're going to need some players to help pick up the slack. This week, coach Lane Kiffin has opened up the other cornerback spot, with competition ongoing between Torin Harris, redshirt freshman Anthony Brown and redshirt junior Tony Burnett.

Kyle Williams | email