LOS ANGELES (AP) — After three days spent pondering the wounds and puzzles left over from Southern California’s unprecedented thrashing by Oregon, coach Pete Carroll has arrived at two conclusions.
He thinks the Trojans’ defensive game plan was terrible — too complicated for the youngsters and too cautious for the veterans. He threw it out, never to use it again.
Carroll also has decided the Trojans’ lofty standards of nearly a decade haven’t really slipped. Instead, he insists the Pac-10 is simply catching up to the pace set by the surest thing in college football for most of the past seven seasons.
“This is unusual,” said Carroll, who’s 94-17 at USC. “This is a different impact, but when you lose, you lose. When you get beat, you get beat. You have to deal with it. If we want to give it style points and all that, it tasted a little different, but it’s the same mechanisms that have to kick in.”
Although that 47-20 Halloween nightmare left the 12th-ranked Trojans (6-2, 3-2 Pac-10) facing long odds to maintain their streak of seven consecutive Pac-10 titles, Carroll seems unshaken in his confidence that USC will recover in his favorite month. USC is 27-0 in November games under Carroll, and the Trojans face their final road trip of the season Saturday at Arizona State (4-4, 2-3).