Everything Clay Helton and players said after USC's dramatic win over ASU
USC kept its goals alive in a shortened season that affords no margin for error by erasing a 13-point deficit in the final minutes Saturday to stun Arizona State, 28-27, inside the Coliseum.
Here's everything Clay Helton, quarterback Kedon Slovis, wide receivers Bru McCoy and Drake London and safety Isaiah Pola-Mao said after the momentous win.
Opening comments from Clay Helton ...
CH: "It reminds you of 2020, doesn't it? A year of adversity and finding a way to overcome hard situations. I'm proud of our football team. It was a frustrating day because the ball was moving, but you're making enough mistakes offensively turning it over three times in the red zone, coming away with zero points. It really gets frustrating, but I commend our team. A year ago we may not have won this game, but a year older, a year more of experience, I did not see any panic. I saw poise and just kids saying, get to the next opportunity, get to the next opportunity, and make some big plays down the stretch. We know that Arizona State is one of the tougher teams on our schedule. We knew it was going to be a huge game for the South and the first game. And I come away from this tonight saying, hey, we just beat a good football team and have the opportunity to really grow as our football team. I think this can be an excellent, excellent football team, I really do. And how bout the play down the stretch of No. 9 and Drake London -- unbelievable throw and catch to end the game."
What do you take away on offense from today?"
CH: "I was proud of Graham because even down two scores and we were in that eight minute range in the fourth quarter, we said just keep on playing, keep on playing, keep running the ball. If they're going to play advantage coverages to run then go ahead and do that, and you look up and you have 177 rushing yards. That was a big part of the story today, especially down the stretch some big runs by Vavae in that last drive."
Describe that 1:32 second stretch where you go from down 13 to up 1, and what did you think of Bru McCoy's two plays during that stretch?
CH: "Starting with Bru, Bru's had a wonderful camp and really felt confident in him going and playing today and he made some big plays in the game including that touchdown. But you look at his 5 catches and 51 yards and we needed every yard today and he was a part of that. Last kind of 3 minutes, I thought it was great situational mastery of football, down two scores treating it like a two-minute drive. Terrific job by Graham drawing offsides, terrific job by Kedon giving his guys a chance to make a play on that touchdown. And then I thought Sean, Coach Snyder did a wonderful job with the special teams today and a huge play with the on-side kick. We go down, call a couple runs, get it down there, and then as good a pitch and catch as I've seen on the fourth down with Drake and 9. Just being a year older, that's one of those that you've got to pull the trigger -- if you hesitate at all it's not going to be a touchdown. And Kedon got that ball in there perfect timing and perfect accuracy."
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