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2020 Pac-12 Championship Monday: Trojans Eye a Title

Dec 14, 2020

Following a big win over UCLA, the Trojans have shifted their focus to preparing for the Pac-12 Championship game on Friday.

  • "We're really proud of our kids for giving us the opportunity to be in this position," head coach Clay Helton said. "We've asked them to go 1-0 each and every week and that's what they've done."
     
  • RB Vavae Malepeai's 110-yard performance, the second highest of career, earned praise from offensive coordinator Graham Harrell. "He's a consistent guy that knows how to do everything, and does everything at a high level, so to have him be as successful as he was, it was big for us," Harrell said.
     
  • Helton announced that Vavae Malepeai suffered a knee sprain late in the game Saturday and is being monitored. S Briton Allen (neck) and CB Dorian Hewett (concussion) are both day-to-day.
     
  • WR Amon-Ra St. Brown caught the game winning touchdown on Saturday and credits the team's culture for USC's ability to win the game. "We don't go into any game thinking we never have a shot, even if we're down," St. Brown said. "As a team, it shows us how strong we are, how much we've grown from last year. We just trust in each other, we believe in our coaches and we know we can get the job done."
     
  • With the final matchup still undetermined, USC must prepare to face Washington or Oregon on Friday. Helton says that they hope to know more this afternoon when testing results return, but have begun planning for Washington early, and plan to work on Oregon later this week.
     
  • Harrell emphasized how important it is that the players are healthy and prepared for Friday's game, especially coming off of a short week. "We expect to execute anytime we go on the football field, we expect to do what we do and do it at a high level," he said.
     
  • Helton had praise for Washington DB Elijah Molden, comparing him to USC S Talanoa Hufanga. "They just show up, and they're winners," Helton said. "They make the plays that win games."
     
  • Despite the uncertainty, Helton is confident that the team will be ready to play."We'll be prepared. It'll be daylight 'til dark, it'll be a grind but that's what happens on championship week," Helton said. "This week is championship week, let's act like champions and get our job done."