No. 14 Stanford (1-0, Pac-12 0-0) at No. 6 Southern California (1-0, 0-0), Saturday 8:30 p.m. ET (Fox) Line: USC by 6.
No. 14 Stanford (1-0, Pac-12 0-0) at No. 6 Southern California (1-0, 0-0), Saturday 8:30 p.m. ET (Fox)
Line: USC by 6.
Series record: USC leads 61-32-3.
WHAT'S AT STAKE
The annual way-too-early showdown between California's private school powers finds both teams hoping to take an early Pac-12 lead. USC has the chance to break a three-game skid against the Cardinal, who are bouncing back from their second-worst season in coach David Shaw's first six years in charge. The Trojans were a bit shaky last week, but they've still won 10 straight games and 10 in a row at the Coliseum.
Stanford RB Bryce Love vs. USC LB Cam Smith. Love is Christian McCaffrey's heir in the Cardinal backfield, and he showed off a sprinter's speed while racking up 180 yards rushing in Stanford's season-opening win in Australia. USC's run defense was terrible against Western Michigan last week until Smith returned from his first-half suspension for targeting in the Rose Bowl.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Stanford: CB Quenton Meeks. The heir to Richard Sherman usually draws the Cardinal's toughest defensive assignments, and he must come up big against USC's work-in-progress passing game led by Sam Darnold and top target Deontay Burnett.
USC: RB Ronald Jones II. The junior added layers of muscle to his world-class speed in the offseason, transforming into a complete star for Tailback U. He racked up 159 yards rushing and three TDs in the opener, seemingly getting stronger as the game wore on and the Trojans pulled away.
FACTS & FIGURES
This series dates to 1905. ... Stanford has won seven of its last nine meetings with USC, the most successful stretch in school history for the Trojans' oldest rival. ... USC is playing in the first Pac-12 game of the season for the seventh consecutive year, doing it against Stanford five times in the last six years. Both teams play Notre Dame in a late-season non-conference game. ... USC's overall 10-game winning streak is its longest since 2008-09 (12). ... The temperature topped 100 degrees at the Coliseum last week. The forecast only calls for 80-degree conditions Saturday. ... Stanford is coming off a bye after that blowout victory over Rice in Sydney to open the season.