09/18/2012 08:15 am ET

The Sack Of Troy: How Did Stanford Beat USC?

It's no great feat of analysis to point out what went wrong after it's gone wrong –- 20/20 hindsight and all that -– but it was also no secret coming into the season that USC's glaring weakness as a national contender was its defensive line. Read those season previews closely enough, somewhere down in the footnotes beneath odes to quarterback Matt Barkley and his world-class wide receivers, and you'll find it. That concern only deepened when senior defensive end Devon Kennard was ruled out for the year in preseason drills, leaving one returning starter along the front four, Wes Horton, who was subsequently injured himself in the Trojans' win over Syracuse. So it probably should not have come as any surprise that Stanford, nouveau beacon of old-school, salt-of-the-earth power running, turned out to be the opponent that exploited it.

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