- Associated Press - Thursday, September 10, 2015

Idaho (0-1) at No. 8 USC (1-0), 8 p.m. (Pac-12 Network)

Line: USC by 43.

Series Record: USC leads 9-0.

WHAT’S AT STAKE

Southern California continues its preparations for a national title challenge with its second straight game against a Sun Belt opponent. The Trojans beat Arkansas State by 49 points a week earlier.

KEY MATCHUP

WR Dezmon Epps vs. USC S Chris Hawkins. Epps led the nation with 15 receptions in the Vandals’ season opener against Ohio, the second-biggest day in school history. Hawkins was the key to the Trojans’ pass defense in their opener, getting an interception and recovering a fumble.

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Idaho: QB Matt Linehan. The sophomore son of Dallas Cowboys offensive coordinator Scott Linehan kicked off his second season as the Vandals’ starter by going 36 for 48 against Ohio, albeit with two interceptions and just one touchdown.

USC: WR JuJu Smith-Schuster. He got his sophomore year off to a flying start with four catches for 89 yards last week, asserting his desire to be Cody Kessler’s No. 1 target.

FACTS & FIGURES

Idaho gave up 489 yards to Ohio in its season-opening loss. … USC and Idaho played seven times from 1922-29 when both were members of the Pacific Coast Conference. They’ve met just once since then: John David Booty led USC past Idaho 38-10 in the 2007 season opener when the Trojans were the preseason No. 1. … The Trojans had 23 players make their debuts against Arkansas State, improving their still-shaky depth with playing time for youngsters. … Idaho coach Paul Petrino said USC C Max Tuerk “might be as good a center as I’ve ever watched.” … USC will play the second of three straight games at the Coliseum to open the regular season.


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