USC Closes Out Road Trip At Utah Saturday
Jan. 11, 2013
USC (6-10, 1-2) will be at Utah (8-7, 0-3) at the Jon M. Huntsman Center in Salt Lake City, Utah on Jan. 12 at 4 p.m. (MT). This is the first game at Utah for USC since the Runnin' Utes joined the conference last season. USC is 2-2 in its last four games, but has lost its last 14 road contests, including 10 straight Pac-12 road games.
BREAKING DOWN UTAH -- Utah lost at home, 57-53, to UCLA on Jan. 10, after two tough road losses to start conference play, falling 55-54 in overtime at ASU and then 60-57 at Arizona. Jarred DuBois (12.9), Jordan Loveridge (12.9) and Jason Washburn (10.5) are all averaging in double figures in points per game. USC defeated Utah 62-45 last season at the Galen Center for its only conference victory. USC leads the all-time series, 16-14.
COMEBACK FALLS SHORT AT COLORADO -- Colorado outscored USC 24-6 over the final 10 minutes of the first half to take a 15-point lead into the break and then withstood a Trojan comeback for a 66-60 win at the Coors Events Center in Boulder, Colo. on Jan. 10. USC began the second half on a 10-2 run despite Jio Fontan having to remain on the bench due to a strained intercostal muscle, but Colorado responded with a 14-4 run to extend the lead to 17. USC was not done yet, however, cutting the lead to 66-60 with 14 seconds left and forced a turnover, but missed two shots.
OREGON ON DECK -- Oregon (13-2, 2-0) is coming off a 70-66 home win vs. Arizona on Jan. 10 and will host Arizona State on Jan. 13 before traveling to Los Angeles to face the Trojans on Jan. 17 at 8 p.m. Oregon is second in the conference in scoring at 77.0 points per game, but its balanced attack is led in by freshman Damyean Dotson who is averaging 11.6 points per game.
NOT SO FUNNY MATH... -- USC has made 27 more field goals that its opponents this season, yet has been outscored by 21 points. USC's opponents have made 102 three-pointers to the Trojans' 75 and have made 48 more free throws. In seven of the last eight games USC has had as many or more baskets as its opponents, yet is 3-5 in that stretch. USC has also had as many or more baskets in five of the 10 losses this season.
DEFENSE TIGHTENING -- USC has held the opposition to an average of 59.9 points over the last seven games, after surrendering an average of 67.9 points in the first nine games.
GUARDING THE LINE -- USC has allowed the opposition to make 37.5 percent of its three-point attempts this season, but has made adjustments and is holding opponents to 31.7 percent from beyond the arc in the last eight games (38-for-120). In the first eight games USC's opponents made 42.1 percent of its three-point shots.
THE LONG AND WINDING ROAD -- USC's 66-60 loss at Colorado on Jan. 10 extended the Trojans' road losing streak to 14 games. USC's last road win was on Nov. 30, 2011 at UC Riverside. The Trojans lost their last 10 road games in the 2011-12 season and have lost at Nebraska, at New Mexico, at Georgia and at Colorado this season. USC has lost its last 10 conference road games, last winning the final road game of the 2010-11 season (March 5, 2011 at Washington).
FONTAN UPDATE -- USC point guard Jio Fontan suffered a strained intercostal muscle at the shootaround on Jan. 10 in Boulder, Colo. He tried to play in the game later that night, but sat out the second half. He had three assists, three turnovers and no shots in 16 minutes.
A FOUL SITUATION -- In the first three Pac-12 games, USC has been called for 23 more fouls (65-42) and has been outshot 75-44 from the free throw line.
THREES ARE THE KEYS -- In USC's 10 losses this season, the opposition has made 72 of 168 three-pointers for a 42.9 shooting percentage from beyond the arc. In six of the 10 losses, USC allowed the opposition to make at least six three-pointers, Illinois (13), San Diego State (7), Nebraska (11), New Mexico (11), Minnesota (6) and UC Irvine (9). In USC's six wins, the opponents have made 28.8 percent of their three-point shots (30-for-104).
SLOW STARTS, STRONG FINISHES -- USC has been outscored 536-463 in the first half, while winning the second halves and overtime by a combined score of 546-494. USC has also been outrebounded by 33 in the first half of games, while owning a 44-rebound edge in the second half. The same can be said about the turnover category where USC has 122 in the first half of games and 97 in the second half. The biggest descrepancy is on the defensive side, where USC has allowed opposition teams to shoot 45.4 percent in the first half (197-for-434), including a 43.6 percentage from three-point range (61-for-140), while holding them to a 36.7 FG percentage (153-for-417) and a 31.1 three-point FG percentage (41-for-132) in the second half and overtime of games.
ORABY STREAKING AROUND THE BLOCK -- Center Omar Oraby had one block at Colorado on Jan. 10 to extend his streak of games with at least one block to 14. It is the longest streak by a Trojan since Taj Gibson registered a block in 46 consecutive games. He has 27 blocks are second on the team and he leads the team with a 40-minute prorated scoring average of 19.6. Oraby was 7-for-9 and scored 15 points vs. Minnesota on Dec. 8, with all of his points coming from inside the paint in the second half of the game. He made his first start on Dec. 15 vs. UCR and scored 7 points on 2-for-3 shooting. Orabay scored a team-high 14 points at Georgia on Dec. 22 and added 11 rebounds for his first double-double as a Trojan and fourth of his career. Oraby has made 63.5 percent (47-for-74) of his shots this season and has averaged 7.7 points while playing 15.6 minutes per game. He has averaged 9.5 points (76 total) and 6.1 rebounds (49 rebounds) in the last 8 games.