2010 Game #2: Virginia at USC

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Here are the keys to a successful Saturday at the Coliseum:

1.) Secondary is Primary

Hawaii spread the Trojans out and poked holes in a young nickel package to the tune of 459 yards passing in the opener.  While Virginia features a more traditional pro-style attack, the Cavaliers got career days out of their top two receivers against Richmond.  USC's pass defense gets a boost with the return of CB T.J. Bryant and pass rushing specialist Nick Perry.  More than anything though, USC has talented players that will likely be more settled in their second game.

2.) The Dillon Effect

Marc Tyler was exceptional against the Warriors and he remains the starting tailback, but Dillon Baxter is capable of things that no other USC runner can mimic.  While he might open some eyes by opening up defenses, Lane Kiffin wants the freshman to focus on protecting the ball.  If he comes through tomorrow with a solid performance, the "Dillon package" will likely increase as the year progresses.

3.) The Long Armstead of the Law

Armond Armstead was moved back inside this week to wall off the running game in tandem with Jurrell Casey.  Lost in all the pass defense struggles, Hawaii's running backs accounted for 127 ground yards on only 15 carries.  Virginia's Keith Payne will hope to wear down the defensive front and control the clock.  If Armstead and Casey can push him backwards, UVa won't last long in obvious passing situations. 

4.) RoJo Rerun

Ronald Johnson was Heisman-good in his 4 TD opener including a signature punt return.  Tomorrow, he'll likely matchup with Thorpe Award candidate Ras-I Dowling on the outside.  Dowling is trying to overcome a hamstring injury, so look for Kiffin to stretch him out at some point by sending RoJo long.

5.)  Get Kick Started

Jake Harfman punted just twice in game one, while Joe Houston did not attempt a field goal.  Despite the offense scoring seven touchdowns, Houston actually only kicked three extra points.  Virginia is expected to be more sturdy defensively than Hawaii, so the "Bomb Squad" and the "Score Team" will likely get more opportunities.

Houston was ready for Hawaii, but he was barely used.

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