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USC’s Justin Davis out against Arizona with ankle sprain

01 October 2016: Southern California tailback Justin Davis (22) runs 37 yards for a touchdown during an NCAA football game between the Arizona State Sun Devils and the USC Trojans at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum in Los Angeles, CA. (Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire)
Brian Rothmuller

USC running back Justin Davis will not play Saturday against Arizona due to an ankle sprain suffered during the team’s win over Colorado. Trojans head coach Clay Helton confirmed the injury during his press conference Thursday after a week in which Davis did not practice.

Davis leads USC with 476 rushing yards on the season and has averaged a solid 6.4 yards per carry. He has added two touchdowns on the ground to his resume. He sustained the high ankle sprain during the second half of the team’s 21-17 win over Colorado and was seen on crutches leaving the locker room following the game.

Sophomore running back Ronald Jones is expected to start Saturday in place of Davis. Jones set a USC freshman record with 987 yards in the 2015 season, but has struggled a bit as a sophomore. In 2016, he has 208 yards rushing and one touchdown on 46 carries.

Helton also noted that other sophomore running backs Aca’Cedric Ware and Dominic Davis would rotate in with Jones.

“We’ve got three really quality runners,” Helton told the Orange County Register. “We still remain balanced. We’re going to stick to our M.O., where our run still sets up the pass and be a balanced offense. We got a lot of confidence in the three kids.”

USC received some down-ballot votes in the latest Coaches Poll, but was not able to crack the top-25 for the week. They are 3-3 on the season, with their three losses all coming against ranked opponents Alabama, Stanford, and Utah.

The Trojans notched their first win against a ranked opponent Saturday beating then-No. 21 Colorado.

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