L.A. Times Writer Lonnie White on USC vs. Ohio State

L.A. Times Writer Lonnie White on USC vs. Ohio State
LA Times

L.A. Times Writer Lonnie White on USC vs. Ohio State

Lonnie White, Inside/Behind the Lines Columnist for the Los Angeles Times steps up to the mic and answers some questions before the big USC vs. Ohio State game.

Interview by Eric Geier

1.) How much is losing John David Booty going to hurt? Or has Pete Carroll already groomed his next star?

----There's always a period of adjustment any time a major football program has to replace a veteran starter at quarterback, and that will be the case with USC in 2008. John David Booty may have had flaws but he was a steady leader for two seasons and led the Trojans to back-to-back Rose Bowl victories.

But junior Mark Sanchez has waited quietly for his turn to be USC's No.1 quarterback and he has the potential to be more dynamic and productive than Booty. Sanchez is a bigger and better athlete with a stronger arm. But Sanchez lacks experience and that will be a major challenge against Ohio State.

2.) What do you think is the biggest hurdle USC football is going to have to overcome before the start of the season?

----USC's biggest hurdle to overcome will be putting together a cohesive offensive line around guard Jeff Beyers, the only returning starter. Several players will get a chance to compete for a starting job and it will be important for the Trojans to find a five-man unit early in camp to help Sanchez with his development.

3.) What do you think is the biggest factor going into the USC vs. Ohio State game?

----The Buckeyes' edge in experience will be the biggest factor. With so many people expecting Ohio State to dominate the Big 10 again, this will be like an early season National Championship game and USC is well aware that two years ago, the Buckeyes knocked off Texas in Sept. to spark a run to the BCS title game.

4.) Where do you think USC will excel and where do you think they will struggle in the game vs. Ohio State?

-----USC's secondary should be better and deeper than last season and this will be a strength against Ohio State's passing game. But the Trojans' own air attack may struggle against the Buckeyes' pass defense.

5.) Do you think the crowd will be a factor? Are they as excited as people in Columbus?

----This should be an interesting factor because Ohio State travels so well. Under Coach Pete Carroll, the Coliseum has grown into a strong home field advantage for USC but the Buckeyes will not find the stadium too difficult to play in---compared to games at Michigan and Penn State. However, USC fans are very excited for the game and that may be a difference maker.

Tags: Buckeyes Football Ohio State

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Ohio State 2018 Football Schedule

Jan 1st Rose Bowl v Washington
ESPN 5:00pm ET

Sep. 1 Oregon State Beavers
Ohio Stadium, Columbus, OH Noon ET

Sep. 8 Rutgers Scarlet Knights
Ohio Stadium, Columbus, OH 3:30pm ET

Sep. 15 at TCU Horned Frogs
AT&T Stadium, Arlington, TX

Sep. 22 Tulane Green Wave
Ohio Stadium, Columbus, OH

Sep. 29 at Penn State Nittany Lions
Beaver Stadium, University Park, PA

Oct. 6 Indiana Hoosiers (HC)
Ohio Stadium, Columbus, OH 3:30/4pm ET

Oct. 13 Minnesota Golden Gophers
Ohio Stadium, Columbus, OH

Oct. 20 at Purdue Boilermakers
Ross-Ade Stadium, West Lafayette, IN

Nov. 3 Nebraska Cornhuskers
Ohio Stadium, Columbus, OH Time 12:00pm

Nov. 10 at Michigan State Spartans
Spartan Stadium, East Lansing, MI Time TBA

Nov. 17 at Maryland Terrapins
Maryland Stadium, College Park, MD Time TBA

Nov. 24 Michigan Wolverines
Ohio Stadium, Columbus, OH Noon ET

Dec. 1 Big Ten Championship Game
Lucas Oil Stadium, Indianapolis, IN 8:00pm ET