Washington 16, Southern Cal 13

Washington gives USC the boot

QB Locker, Huskies pull off a stunner

By Gregg Bell
Associated Press / September 20, 2009

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SEATTLE - Southern California was leveled by another post-Ohio State funk, taken down by upstart Washington with a late drive that must have looked familiar to the Trojans.

Erik Folk kicked a 22-yard field goal with three seconds remaining and Washington’s fired-up defense stymied fill-in quarterback Aaron Corp and No. 3 USC in a 16-13 victory yesterday.

USC quarterback Matt Barkley, who directed an epic game-winning drive to beat the Buckeyes in Columbus, Ohio, last week, could only watch the latest stunning upset loss by the Trojans from the sideline. The star freshman was out with a sore shoulder.

It was Washington quarterback Jake Locker’s time to shine and the Huskies’ turn to pull out a win that will stand among the most memorable in the once-proud program’s history.

USC was nearly a three-touchdown favorite against the Huskies. Washington (2-1, 1-0) came in riding a record 15-game Pac-10 losing streak. But again the Trojans were toppled by a team that seemed to be no match for all their blue-chip recruits and future NFL draft picks. USC (2-1, 0-1) has now lost to an unranked team each of the last four seasons.

“Washington wasn’t the better team. They just outplayed us,’’ said Joe McKnight, who ran for 100 yards on 11 carries with USC’s only touchdown. “Clearly, we have superior athletes. But hard work beats athleticism any day.’’

Carroll’s team was stung by eight penalties, an 0-for-10 conversion rate on third down, and three turnovers inside the Washington 35. “We didn’t get any better from last week,’’ he said. “I’m not doing a good enough job of making the points of how we win.’’

One year after Oregon State upset USC in the Pac-10 opener following an impressive Trojans win over Ohio State, an old friend upset Carroll’s powerful team. Washington coach Steve Sarkisian was his offensive coordinator before taking over in Seattle in January, trying to rebuild a team that had the Pac-10’s first 0-12 season last year.

“It’s unbelievable,’’ Sarkisian said. “It’s a great moment for our program and hopefully sends a message of where we’re headed.’’

Corp, a sophomore making his first career start, was 13 for 22 for 110 yards with one interception. USC (2-1, 0-1) was held to its lowest point total since a 13-9 loss to UCLA Dec. 2, 2006.

Trailing, 13-10, with six minutes left, McKnight took off on a 34-yard run before fumbling, but split end David Ausberry recovered at the Huskies’ 22, giving the Trojans a chance to go ahead. But Donald Butler, who was all over the field for Washington, stopped Stafon Johnson on third and 6. That forced the Trojans to settle for a 25-yard field goal by Jordan Congdon that tied it at 13 with four minutes remaining.

Locker wasn’t done, though. He faced third and 15 with 3:03 left, but connected with Jermaine Kearse for 21 yards. Locker converted another third down with a 4-yard run to the USC 39.

Locker then fired 19 yards to Kearse to the USC 16, and a roughing-the-passer penalty put the Huskies at the 8 with 33 seconds left.

One running play later, Washington called on Folk with seven seconds left. The sophomore nailed it, giving Washington its first win over USC since 2001, Carroll’s first season with the Trojans.