Rose Bowl prediction roundtable with the Campus Insiders staff. Breaking down what will happen between USC and Penn State.
A matchup of the two hottest teams in the country will live up to its billing. Expect a lot of points. Trace McSorley lit up Wisconsin’s defense for 384 yards and four touchdowns in Penn State’s ninth straight win, while Sam Darnold has been fantastic in leading USC to eight consecutive victories.
I’m going with Darnold flinching first and making a freshman mistake on the potential game-winning drive, giving the Nittany Lions a 49-48 victory.
USC. If Manny Bowen and Saeed Blacknall weren’t suspended, I would be on Penn State’s side. However, those losses – an outside linebacker against the nation’s hottest offense and the receiver that blew up against Wisconsin – will prove too costly. Trojans win, and let the preseason USC hype train begin.
Yes, I know Penn State won the Big Ten title. Yes, I know Trace McSorley has looked great, and, yes, I know Saquon Barkley is the truth. But there wasn’t any quarterback in college football playing better than Sam Darnold did in the final eight games of the season.
We’re setting up for an instant classic here. McSorley and Darnold will duel it out, and Darnold will end up making big throws late in the game to help give USC the edge. Mix in some dazzling runs from Ronald Jones and a couple big catches from JuJu Smith-Schuster, and that’s all you need for a Trojans victory.
The other night at my local bar, there was a Penn State “truther” who tried to get into an argument with the bartender, who just happened to be a Penn State alumnus. The “truther” had only watched the documentary on the situation while the bartender had full knowledge of everything that had occurred. The argument is going to be a lot like this game: lopsided.