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2021 USC Football vs. Arizona Practice Report: Trojans Return Home

Oct 27, 2021

The Trojans are busy preparing for a Pac-12 South matchup against Arizona on Saturday.

  • Defensive coordinator Todd Orlando has the defense gearing up to take on the Wildcats as the Trojans return to the Coliseum for this year's Homecoming game, looking to earn another Pac-12 win.
  • Several younger players increased their playing time last week at Notre Dame following the developmental scrimmage during the bye week, and Orlando expects to "see those guys a lot."
  • Freshmen Jaylin Smith and Prophet Brown embraced the opportunity to start last week, and Orlando was pleased with the results. "They both did a good job in terms of playing some man-to-man, and that was one of the reasons we wanted them out there, was to let them cover, and they're only gonna get better," Orlando said.
  • Smith earned his first start last week and was focused on bringing his all to an increased role. "They told me just to play fast, make tackles, you know, do me, and that's just what I went out there and did, tried to contribute to my team," Smith said.
  • Chris Steele's interception Saturday brought momentum to the USC sideline, and he looks to continue that trend throughout the remainder of the season. "I've just been trying to stay consistent in my play, stay consistent with my eyes and my feet and my technique, and just get my hands on some balls," Steele said.
  • The defense has battled through injuries throughout the season, and Orlando praised the team's perseverance as they enter week 13. "There's a lot of stuff that's kinda internal, in-house that these guys are fighting through, and doing a good job, and they're tough."
  • Orlando expects to see a strong emphasis on the run game from Arizona, and has his defense prepping to make key stops. "That's what we anticipate, they'll sit there and slam the football at us, so we've gotta respond that way," Orlando said.