Trojans working to rediscover great Novembers

USC was able to dismantle the Corvallis Curse in its 31-14 win last Thursday over Oregon State. By doing so they kicked off November with a bang and by no means are ready to rest on their laurels.

This team’s focus is to continue to get better, Orgeron says. Once upon a time, USC owned the month of November under former head coach Pete Carroll. They were 29-1 with the lone loss coming in his final season against Stanford.

Orgeron has a goal to get back to that.

“One of the best things with Coach Carroll’s team [was] that they got better in the month of November,” Orgeron said. “That’s my goal with the football team is that this week for us to take the next step in getting better.”

Last Thursday was certainly a step in the right direction. The Trojans had lost their previous three games in Corvallis, and hadn’t won there since 2004. It’s a place that caused them heartache and likely national championships during the Carroll era. None of those losses, however, came in November under Carroll.

With four games remaining this month to close out the regular season, it won’t be easy to make it out unblemished. Half of the remaining games are against ranked opponents, but those are at home with No. 6 Stanford and No. 16 UCLA scheduled to come to the Coliseum.
But Orgeron isn’t worried about the opponents, per say. He says it’s all about his team.

What separated Carroll and Co. in the month of November is those teams always stayed the course, Orgeron says.

Fundamentals continued to be stressed. The coaches continued to coach the players up. The players continued competing against one another and the confidence of the players continued to grow.

That’s the plan going forward and Orgeron is hoping to duplicate the results of Trojan teams of the past.

“Do I feel confident that we can play very well towards the end of the season? Yes,” Orgeron said. “But we have to take that next step this week.”