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USC: The season

A game-by-game breakdown of the Trojans' season:

January 01, 2007|GARY KLEIN

No. 6 USC 50, Arkansas 14, Sept. 2 at Fayetteville, Ark.

* Despite losing two Heisman Trophy winners, the Trojans did not miss a beat. John David Booty had a solid debut as the starting quarterback, passing for three touchdowns against a turnover-prone Razorbacks team that would go on to play in the Southeastern Conference championship game. USC's victory came with a cost: Junior safety Josh Pinkard suffered a season-ending knee injury.

No. 4 USC 28, No. 19 Nebraska 10, Sept. 16 at the Coliseum

* The matchup had all the makings of a classic confrontation, but Cornhuskers Coach Bill Callahan seemed content to keep the score close rather than trying to win the game. After being called out by Trojans offensive coordinator Lane Kiffin for a subpar performance against Arkansas, All-American split end Dwayne Jarrett caught 11 passes, two for touchdowns. Fullback Ryan Powdrell suffered season-ending ankle and leg injuries.

No. 3 USC 20, Arizona 3, Sept. 23 at Tucson

* Some college football observers regarded the Pacific 10 opener as a trap game for the Trojans. But the defense sacked Arizona's Willie Tuitama five times and nearly shut out the Wildcats. Linebacker Rey Maualuga intercepted a pass, defensive end Lawrence Jackson blocked a field-goal attempt and linebacker Dallas Sartz recovered a muffed punt. Freshman tailback Emmanuel Moody rushed for 130 yards in 21 carries. Jarrett suffered a separated shoulder.

No. 3 USC 28, Washington State 22, Sept. 30 at Pullman, Wash.

* With Jarrett at home, senior flanker Steve Smith had a spectacular game: 11 catches, 186 yards, two touchdowns. Booty engineered two long second-half scoring drives as the Trojans survived a lost fumble, an interception and an anemic rushing attack. Late in the game the Cougars drove from their 24-yard line to USC's 39. But freshman safety Taylor Mays intercepted a pass near the goal line on the final play.

No. 3 USC 26, Washington 20, Oct. 7 at the Coliseum

* USC's offense scored only one touchdown -- on a second-quarter pass from Booty to sophomore Patrick Turner, who had a career-best 12 receptions. Late in the fourth quarter, Washington quarterback Isaiah Stanback drove his team from its 20 to the Trojans' 15 with two seconds left. But after the referee gave the signal to start the clock, time expired before the Huskies snapped the ball.

No. 3 USC 28, Arizona State 21, Oct. 14 at the Coliseum

* With Booty struggling and the Trojans having blown a 21-point lead, coaches put the game in the hands of tailback Chauncey Washington. The junior, who had missed two seasons because of academic ineligibility, carried 10 times for 64 yards on a 14-play, 74-yard drive to the winning touchdown, which he scored on a two-yard run. He finished with 108 yards in 22 carries.

Oregon State 33, No. 3 USC 31, Oct. 28 at Corvallis, Ore.

* The Trojans' hopes for a berth in the national championship game seemed lost after Booty's two-point conversion pass was tipped away with seven seconds left, ending USC's 27-game Pac-10 winning streak. USC committed four turnovers and also gave up a 70-yard punt return to fall behind 33-10 in the third quarter. Booty led the Trojans nearly all the way back, pulling to within two points with a touchdown pass to Smith, who finished with 11 catches for 258 yards.

No. 9 USC 42, Stanford 0, Nov. 4 at Palo Alto

* The Trojans rebounded by walloping the winless Cardinal in its new stadium. The defense hung on to finish the Trojans' first shutout in two years. Cornerback Terrell Thomas set the tone in a speech the night before, and the junior led the way by intercepting a pass and returning a blocked field-goal attempt for a touchdown. Booty passed for three touchdowns in the first half, two to Jarrett.

No. 7 USC 35, No. 21 Oregon 10, Nov. 11 at the Coliseum

* USC climbed back into the BCS title-game picture during a week when Louisville, Texas and Auburn suffered their second losses. Washington rushed for a career-high 119 yards and three touchdowns, and USC took advantage of two Oregon turnovers en route to its 31st consecutive home victory. Oregon could not overcome an interception by Mays that led to a touchdown and Sartz's third-quarter fumble recovery that led to a touchdown and a 21-3 lead.

No. 4 USC 23, No. 17 California 9, Nov. 18 at the Coliseum

* The Trojans trailed, 9-6, at halftime but tied the score in the third quarter on David Buehler's 49-yard field goal. Booty's 25-yard touchdown pass to Jarrett early in the fourth quarter and a 37-yard strike to Smith on a fourth-and-two play about five minutes later kept the Trojans on track for a possible berth in the BCS title game.

No. 3 USC 44, No. 6 Notre Dame 24, Nov. 25 at the Coliseum

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