The USC Trojans have been home to some very, very talented players, and that of course includes players at the quarterback position. After all, names like Carson Palmer and Matt Leinart, who both won the Heisman at USC, tend to come to mind when thinking of talented quarterbacks who were given the keys to the offense at USC. Max Browne has just been added to the list.
According to ESPN, Browne has been named the starting quarterback for the Trojans.
“At this point, we feel that it is in the best interest of our football team to lean on the veteran experience that Max Browne has, so we have named him the starter going into our opening game against Alabama,” head coach Clay Helton said in a statement. “With our experienced offensive line and the weapons at our skill positions, we as a staff are confident that Max’s ability will help guide a very successful offense.”
Saying Browne has a tough test in the season opener is a huge understatement, as the Trojans will take the field against the Alabama Crimson Tide. The Crimson Tide aren’t only the defending national champs, but they will also enter the season with the No. 1 ranking in college football, and that includes both major polls.
Last season, the Trojans entered the year with some serious hype, as they were ranked as high as No. 8 in the preseason polls, and QB Cody Kessler was expected to compete for the Heisman. Needless to say, things did not go according to plan for USC. It lost its head coach early on in the year, and it ended the season with an 8-6 record, which included a loss in the Holiday Bowl against the Wisconsin Badgers.
Fast forward to now, and USC has a new head coach, Kessler has since taken his talents to the next level, and this squad is only ranked as high as No. 17.
The expectations are still there, but there are plenty of questions surrounding this historic program. If USC can somehow manage to knock off the defending champs in the first game of 2016, then its ranking will skyrocket, and everyone will take it as a serious College Football Playoff contender.
However, if the Trojans get blown out, and if Browne has a bad outing, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see redshirt freshman Sam Darnold make an appearance at some point. Of course, that decision is Helton’s to make.
Unfortunately for USC, the tough path will not stop against Alabama. The Trojans will take on the Stanford Cardinal on September 17. The Cardinal are ranked as high as No. 7. As of right now, the Trojans will close out their last four games of the regular season against teams ranked in the top 25, which includes a battle against the Notre Dame Fighting Irish, who are ranked as high as No. 9. Of course, a lot could change now until then.
Browne might be a redshirt junior, but he only has 143 passing yards to his name. 113 of those yards came in the 2015 season. Browne has all the talent in the world, and this is USC we are talking about (the program is always loaded with talent), so things could get interesting against Alabama.
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