USC not satisfied with win over Hawaii
SEP 02, 2012 12:15a ET
Barkley declared he returned to USC because he had "Unfinished Business," and he played like it. Barkley didn't disappoint completing 23 of 38 passes for 372 yards, and four touchdowns. He had 309 yards and three of those touchdowns were before halftime. He played just one series in the second half.
It was Lee catching the very first pass, on the very first play from scrimmage from Barkley on a short out route and taking it 75 yards for the score as No. 1 USC defeated Hawaii 49-10 on Saturday night at the Coliseum.
Lee finished the game with 10 receptions for 197 yards and a touchdown. He also returned a kickoff for a touchdown 100 yards in the third quarter and finished the game with 297 total yards.
Lee became only the second Trojan to return a kickoff 100 yards for a touchdown. The other was Anthony Davis, who did it twice in 1974.
However, for all of the jubilation in the Coliseum, the Trojans weren't satisfied with their performance. Or happy, for that matter.
Robert Woods, who had two touchdown receptions in the game, said he'd grade it "a C+ (or) B-" because the team "missed out on some touchdowns... we're supposed to make those plays."
When asked about Woods' comments, USC head coach Lane Kiffin agreed.
"Yeah, that's probably about right. Somewhere in the C-range," Kiffin said. "We didn't have negative plays, for the most part, which is good.
"Matt had to make some plays that he shouldn't have to make there with some pressure. We got a lot of work to do."
Barkley had words with Lee on the field after an incompletion in the third quarter. It was a misread and Barkley was hit on the play.
"You expect perfection," Barkley said."When I'm out there, obviously it's nothing personal, but he knows what I'm expecting from him. If I don't put a ball where it needs to be I expect him to get on me because it should be perfect.
"That's all it was. They're easily correctable things that we both can do from the receivers (to) me as the quarterback so it's nothing to worry about."
Off all the things he did that made the USC fans roar on Saturday night, Lee says what he'll take with him following this game is a couple of dropped passes.
"When you do a play numerous times in practice and you always catch it, you expect to do it in the game," Lee said. "It came up in the game and I should have caught it."
For as critical as Kiffin and company were of the offense's performance, they shouted praise for the defense. Kiffin said they, primarily the defensive line, were the "storyline" of the game.
USC was without their most experienced defensive end, Wes Horton, and starting middle linebacker, Lamar Dawson, against Hawaii.
So, it ended up being a night of firsts for the USC Trojans defense. Greg Townsend Jr., Anthony Sarao, Leonard Williams, and Morgan Breslin all picked up their first career sack on the night.
Hayes Pullard, who moved over from WILL linebacker and started in the middle in place of Dawson, picked off the first pass of his career and returned it for a touchdown in the first quarter.
"It wasn't my play to actually make," Pullard said of his pick six. "I was supposed to be in the backfield blitzing."
For Pullard, it was his first start at middle linebacker since his days at Crenshaw High School. Kiffin says the middle will probably be Pullard's position at the next level.
Florida transfer Josh Shaw also recorded his first career interception late in the game.
The Trojans defense held Hawaii to 56 rushing yards.
The starters on the defensive line on Saturday were George Uko, who was making his third career start, Antwaun Woods and Morgan Breslin, who were playing in their first game as Trojans and J.R. Tavai, who was moved outside to defensive end at the beginning of fall camp after Devon Kennard suffered a torn pectoral muscle.
Kiffin has stressed the need to be able to rotate players on the defensive line and they were able to do that with defensive ends Townsend Jr. and Kevin Greene, along with defensive tackles Williams and Christian Heyward, who both recovered a fumble in the win.
"The defensive linemen that played today, that's a lot different from the way we ended last year here," Kiffin said. " Nick Perry leaves early, Devon Kennard out, Wes Horton out for the game, so I was very proud of those guys."
Defensive line coach Ed Orgeron says the key will be if they can play a similar rotation against stiffer competition.
"I thought they performed at a pretty good level," Orgeron said. "We're going to get tested. We didn't get tested today."