- Kyle Williams, Analyst, WeAreSC.com
LOS ANGELES -- The Trojans have been moving the chains with their running game, gaining at least 200 yards in three of their last four games. Saturday, USC coach Lane Kiffin was looking to his backfield again for another big performance running the football, but he was met by a Washington defense that knew it was coming.
Most of the Trojans success in running the ball these past weeks come between the tackles with the inside zone play. With the offensive line and tight ends doing a good job pushing their men off the line of scrimmage and the running backs running downhill and hitting the gaps hard, it has been difficult for defenses to stop.
However, former USC linebackers coach and current Washington defensive coordinator Nick Holt felt like he had a way to stop the run, instructing his linebackers to "back door," or come underneath, the Trojans blocks. That makes it difficult for the running backs to cut the ball back, as well as disrupting the landmarks and fits by the offensive line.
USC used an adjustment in its running game against Washington to control the clock and continue its recent ground success.