And I agreed with him at first. But on further reflection, I think Tony Orlando deserves the game ball. I think his Defense and some critical plays turned the game around.
To wit. USC is down 14-0 USC lost their QB and WSU had a 1st down on the USC 1. About a quarter later the WSU QB is gone. Their O which had been running up and down the field stopped. And USC just flipped the whole game. They switched Uniforms at halftime. Let's look
USC1- Short series ends with Slovis sacked, Slovis hurt, penalties, missfired, can't rush. Stanford-2
WSU1-89 yard TD drive. Moved at will This isn't starting well 0-7 WSU
USC2-Dart in game. INT Bad to worse.
WSU2-smelling blood drives to 1. Goes 4 downs from the 1, and goes for it. Putting USC down 14-0 early. But Orlando's D holds. One of 4-5 huge plays today from them.
USC3-3/out punt Dart's not impressing yet.
WSU3-TD 14-0. Were it not for Orlando, it's 21-0 and probably over.
USC4-Dart fumbles on his own 36. So far, he's not winning any awards.
WSU4-USC D holds. 1 yard in 4 plays. Doesn't even allow WSU close enough to get a FG shot. Keeps it at 14-0. It would easily be and should be 24-8 or worse at this point. This is where I presume Benedict quits.
USC5-Dart takes USC about 89 yards in 3 minutes. 38 yard TD. 14-7./ Suddenly this trouncing is a really competitive game. Like one possession with a half to play
Benedict has officially left the stadium at halftime. Java begins taking up a collection for people to buy a new t-shirt and we begin looking for who his next team is going to be. I am betting against UA and UCLA. We know USC and ASU are out. I'm thinking Stanford, Oregon or UW are early leaders. I can get all t-shirts on Amazon.
Second half begins
WSU1-that lasted 5 seconds. Fuuuuumble on opening KO. USC recovers on like the 25-30
USC1-USC is stopped but a roughing the passer penalty on a failed 3rd down gives new life and a TD. 14-14. This suddenly feels very different. Especially since the WSU QB now is ALSO gone.
WSU2-3/out Punt Suddenly the WSU O is dead, that's 3-4 bad possessions in a row.
USC2-81 yard drive, almost all in the air. 21-14 USC and at this point it actually feels like a rout. USC had now scored as many TD points in the 3Q as they had the last season plus two games.
WSU3-3/out Man, I didn't realize how dominating the USC D had become. Punt
USC3-takes possession at own 43, doesn't go far. But on 3rd and 10 throws a 40 yard PICK to the WSU 5. I actually felt it was a well placed punt and wasn't that bothered. That's a good throw in that down and distance. Still, that's Darts 3rd TO. This is where San Chlamydia falls in love with Darts face and waxes nostalgic that he looks like his boyhood crush Todd E M (weird because I practically live in Capo Beach half the time now). I said he reminded me of Darnold. Not just the look, but the play. High risk, high reward.
WSU4-the well placed INT wisdom is illustrated when on the 2nd play the new QB is blindsided Hot Dog, sack, safety. Wait, ball out, TD? OMG Wow. QNB crushed, and a TD by the D. 28-14 Rout is on.
WSU-5 first play INT. WSU has now seen USC score a TD, USC strip sack another TD, and an INT all in the span of 4 plays. Benedict is crying at the radio on the way back to his pullman trailer.
USC 4-65 yard drive, nearly all passes. 35-14. Wow. This is something. By now, Dart has 350+ yards. This is nuts.
USC 5-3/out Punt
WSU 7-3/out Punt
USC 6-56 yard drive, FG, 38-14 By now I am wondering why Moss isn't in there to spell an injured Dart and to gain reps. USC just doesn't do this.
WSU 8-4/out on downs. Wow what a bad bad half. My gosh. Orlando's unit just owned WSU late
USC 7- 1 play, 36 yard TD. 45-14 Final
Dart 30-46 391 yards. 4 TD 2 INT 1 fumble. 6 rushes 32 yards. USC's leading rusher by a factor of 2
So credit Dart. Whatever Offense USC had was him. And credit the D. Without them, USC doesn't have time to figure it this out. They'd have been chasing 20-30 by then.
What an interesting turnaround game. Anyone else remember any other ones like that? Besides Notre Dame 1974?