Go Trojans!

All about the defense

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USC's 12-point lead has turned into a one-point disadvantage, and Coach Kevin O'Neill went back to the basics during the recent media timeout with 11:41 left in the game.

"The game is going to be decided on the defensive end," O'Neill told his team. "So let's go to work on defense. We've got to get stops right now."

Pause for effect

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The Ducks have cut the Trojan lead to just one, so Kevin O'Neill took a timeout with less than 13 minutes remaining and his team up, 36-35.

"We're going to quit turning the ball over down here [on offense]," O'Neill said during the 30-second timeout. "Let's get it together."

Slimming down

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With 15:07 left in the game, the first media timeout of the second half has arrived, with the Trojans holding a 36-31 lead.

Halftime adjustments

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A nine-point halftime lead?

Coach Kevin O'Neill isn't satisfied -- and he doesn't want his players to be either.

"We're ahead by nine but we're not playing well," O'Neill said. "We've got to extend this lead. Play with force."

With some plays and adjustments scribbled on the board behind him, Coach Kevin O'Neill speaks to his players in the locker room at halftime.

Up by 9 at the half

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It's halftime at the Galen Center, and the Trojans hold a 32-23 advantage at the break.

Agree to disagree

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Coach Kevin O'Neill and an official engaged in an entertaining -- but awfully brief -- conversation when O'Neill wanted to dispute a non-call on a potential out-of-bounds play by Oregon. This is how it went:

O'Neill: "He stepped out of bounds!"

Referee: "He did not!"

O'Neill: "Yes he did!"

Referee: "Well, I disagree."

And with that, O'Neill and the referee parted ways and the dialogue ended.

Plus and minus

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Holding a 31-19 lead with 3:34 remaining, Coach Kevin O'Neill had some ups and downs to discuss with his team during the final media timeout of the first half.

"If we just take care of the ball, we'll be fine," O'Neill told his players, who have given up six turnovers so far. "Keep defending -- you've done a great job of defending the last four or five minutes."

Huddle up

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Guard Dwight Lewis (right) listens as Coach Kevin O'Neill talks with his team during the recent timeout.

Another timeout

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A flurry of threes -- by both teams, but especially by USC -- has given the Trojans a 25-16 advantage at the under-8 media timeout, with 7:27 remaining in the first period.

Anatomy of a break

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During the recently completed timeout, Coach Kevin O'Neill changed man-on-man defensive assignments, drew up an offensive play and gave encouragement to his players for their hard play, key rebounds and nine-point early lead.