With USC struggling to consistently put points on the board, Trojans’ head coach Clay Helton is about to shake things up on offense.
On Monday, Helton announced that Sam Darnold will replace Max Browne at quarterback for Friday’s game at Utah.
— USC Trojans (@USC_Athletics) September 20, 2016
With the Trojans losing to Stanford 27-10 on Saturday and moving to 1-2 on the young season, Helton is clearly looking for ways to reignite USC’s stagnant offense. Considering Darnold is more of a dual-threat weapon, this move makes a lot of sense even though the play of the offensive line has to accept some responsibility.
Darnold, a 6’4”, 225-pound redshirt freshman signal caller from Capistrano Beach, California has passed for 136 yards and two touchdowns with one interception thus far on the season, while completing 63.6 percent of his passes. He has also rushed for 12 yards on just six carries.
Meanwhile, Browne, a 6’5”, 220-pound junior quarterback from Sammamish, Washington, has passed for 474 yards and two touchdowns with two interceptions through the first three games. He has completed 63.2 percent of his passes, while rushing for an anemic -20 yards on eight attempts.
Although we are only three games deep into the season, USC ranks 10th in the conference in total yardage, compiling 969 yards of total offense. USC is also last in the Pac-12 in points per game, only averaging 20.3 points a game, which is almost six full points behind the next closest team (Utah).
Of course, the competition plays a huge part of USC’s struggles, as the Trojans have already played two top-10 teams in Alabama and Stanford.