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Faculty Soccer Week 12 preview: USC tries to stay Pac-12 C…

The college football regular season is abruptly drawing near its conclusion, and there’s nonetheless a lot to be made up our minds. 

Whilst the highest of the College Football Playoff rankings slightly modified after Week 11, a shakeup is at the horizon as the overall two weeks of the common season are performed out. 

At the Saturday after Thanksgiving, Michigan and Ohio State will sq. off to come to a decision the winner of the Large Ten East and a transparent trail to the CFP.

For that matchup to be a must-see, the Wolverines and the Buckeyes each should win in Week 12. 

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TCU additionally appears to be like to stay unbeaten after locking up a place within the Large 12 championship recreation, and USC will attempt to stay the Pac-12 from being close out of the CFP a 6th directly yr with a seek advice from throughout the town to the Rose Bowl. 

Let’s take a look at a couple of video games to concentrate on Saturday as the varsity soccer season kicks off Week 12.

No. 3 Michigan vs. Illinois – 12 p.m. ET, ABC

The matchup on the Large Area in Ann Arbor between Illinois and Michigan has misplaced a few of its luster after the Fighting Illini lost back-to-back video games towards unranked fighters, however there’s nonetheless so much at the line for each groups. 

For the Wolverines and head trainer Jim Harbaugh, a win will permit Michigan to face Ohio State Nov. 26 undefeated with a berth within the Large Ten championship recreation at the line. 

Head trainer Jim Harbaugh of the Michigan Wolverines at the sideline throughout the primary part of a recreation towards the Penn State Nittany Lions at Michigan Stadium Oct. 15, 2022, in Ann Arbor, Mich.
(Aaron J. Thornton/Getty Photographs)

“So much at the line for them, for us,” Harbaugh mentioned. “And the way in which we all the time method a recreation, on a daily basis issues, however the video games depend. … We are in point of fact going to must be on level.”

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It’s a matchup between the 2 most sensible defenses within the nation, and the Michigan entrance will probably be taking a look to gradual Illinois working again Chase Brown, assuming Brown performs after struggling a leg damage in Week 11. 

Head trainer Brett Bielema mentioned previous within the week that Brown is “trending in the appropriate course.”  

“(I’m) very sure and excited however don’t know the place we’ll be via Friday for the travel and Saturday for the sport,” Bielema mentioned. 

Illinois Fighting Illini running back Chase Brown (2) advances the ball during a game against the Purdue Boilermakers Nov. 12, 2022, at Memorial Stadium in Champaign, Ill. 

Illinois Preventing Illini working again Chase Brown (2) advances the ball throughout a recreation towards the Purdue Boilermakers Nov. 12, 2022, at Memorial Stadium in Champaign, In poor health. 
(Michael Allio/Icon Sportswire by the use of Getty Photographs)

Brown leads the rustic in speeding yards with 1,442, whilst the Wolverines head into Week 12 with the highest speeding protection within the nation, permitting simply 72.7 yards in step with recreation at the floor. 

The Michigan protection leads the rustic in general yards allowed in step with recreation (232.8) and issues in step with recreation (11.2). 

“Our run wall has been excellent,” Harbaugh mentioned Monday, in step with MLive. “It’s going to be examined this week almost definitely like none different up thus far. Illinois could be very sturdy on the line of scrimmage on each side of the ball.” Harbaugh cited Illinois’ “remarkable working again.”

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The Michigan offense brings its personal stud working again to the birthday party, with Blake Corum fourth within the nation in yards (1,349) and 17 touchdowns. 

Michigan Wolverines running back Blake Corum (2) runs with the ball during a game against the Nebraska Cornhuskers Nov. 12, 2022, at Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor, Mich.  

Michigan Wolverines working again Blake Corum (2) runs with the ball throughout a recreation towards the Nebraska Cornhuskers Nov. 12, 2022, at Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor, Mich.  
(Scott W. Grau/Icon Sportswire by the use of Getty Photographs)

Illinois counters with a protection permitting simply 85.9 yards in step with recreation at the floor, 6th within the nation.

“They have got an offensive line this is very gifted — giant, lengthy, athletic and strikes extraordinarily smartly,” Bielema mentioned. “At the back of them is a working again that I believe may also be as excellent as any one within the nation; sturdy, robust, has the facility to run via you, has the facility to run round you, has some shiftiness to him. “

Baylor vs. No. 4 TCU – 12 p.m. ET, FOX

TCU must win out to make the Faculty Soccer Playoff, and Baylor received’t be a group that may be overpassed. 

The Horned Frogs will head to Waco, Texas, recent off a dominant defensive performance towards the Texas Longhorns. 

Lwal Uguak of the TCU Horned Frogs celebrates after defeating the Texas Longhorns at Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium Nov. 12, 2022, in Austin, Texas. 

Lwal Uguak of the TCU Horned Frogs celebrates after defeating the Texas Longhorns at Darrell Ok Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium Nov. 12, 2022, in Austin, Texas. 
(Tim Warner/Getty Photographs)

“I knew we had the possible,” TCU defensive coordinator Joe Gillespie instructed ESPN. “I simply did not know the place it used to be going to occur, or if it used to be going to occur. That used to be as entire a four-quarter defensive [performance] that we have performed up till this level. And it is excellent timing.

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“Now the deal is, you have to stay doing it. You have got a large goal in your chest, and that is the reason a excellent factor.”

The TCU protection allowed simply 199 general yards to the Longhorns, shutting down working again Bijan Robinson and the Texas speeding assault (28 speeding yards).

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And whilst Baylor is coming off a disastrous performance against Kansas State, it’s an offense that averages 34.8 issues in step with recreation, excellent for fourth within the Large 12. 

Towards the Wildcats, Baylor’s rushing attack stalled, gaining simply 103 yards at the floor. However in its 3 earlier video games — all wins — Baylor rushed for 273 (Kansas), 231 (Texas Tech) and 281 yards (Oklahoma).  

Blake Shapen (12) of the Baylor Bears throws under pressure from Felix Anudike-Uzomah (91) of the Kansas State Wildcats in the first half at McLane Stadium Nov. 12, 2022, in Waco, Texas. 

Blake Shapen (12) of the Baylor Bears throws below power from Felix Anudike-Uzomah (91) of the Kansas State Wildcats within the first part at McLane Stadium Nov. 12, 2022, in Waco, Texas. 
(Ron Jenkins/Getty Photographs)

Baylor quarterback Blake Shapen struggled towards Kansas State, throwing two interceptions within the loss. 

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“Yeah, complete self belief in him. I believe there used to be almost definitely some urgent via him (towards Ok-State). I believe his footwork almost definitely illustrated a few of that,” Baylor head trainer Dave Aranda mentioned, in step with The Dallas Morning News. 

“To get again to the place there’s a in point of fact sturdy self belief and command in it all — like he’s achieved for us so much this yr — I believe provides us the most efficient probability to be the most efficient offense we will be able to be.”

TCU running back Kendre Miller is moment within the Large 12 in speeding yards in step with recreation (114.7) and will probably be going up towards a Baylor protection ranked 3rd within the convention in rush protection (132.8 yards allowed in step with recreation). 

Kentucky vs. No. 1 Georgia – 3:30 p.m. ET, CBS

What gave the impression of Georgia’s final hurdle prior to the SEC Championship Recreation only a few weeks in the past is now a matchup between groups entering into reverse instructions. 

The Bulldogs secured their spot in Atlanta ultimate weekend after beating Mississippi State one week after knocking off Tennessee

Georgia Bulldogs helmets at a game between the UAB Blazers and the Bulldogs Sept. 11, 2021, at Sanford Stadium in Athens, Ga.  

Georgia Bulldogs helmets at a recreation between the UAB Blazers and the Bulldogs 9/11, 2021, at Sanford Stadium in Athens, Ga.  
(Michael Wade/Icon Sportswire by the use of Getty Photographs)

Georgia’s protection has as soon as once more led the way in which, permitting simply 11.6 issues in step with recreation, the second-fewest within the nation. 

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They’ll be going towards a Kentucky offense that has struggled to place the ball after all zone towards SEC fighters, scoring no less than 20 issues simply 4 instances towards groups from the SEC. 

Towards Vanderbilt in Week 11, the Wildcats controlled simply two offensive touchdowns, permitting the Commodores to snap a 26-game SEC shedding streak.

Will Levis (7) of the Kentucky Wildcats against the Vanderbilt Commodores at Kroger Field on Nov. 12, 2022, in Lexington, Ky. 

Will Levis (7) of the Kentucky Wildcats towards the Vanderbilt Commodores at Kroger Box on Nov. 12, 2022, in Lexington, Ky. 
(Andy Lyons/Getty Photographs)

“We are transferring the ball and doing excellent issues, however we aren’t entering the tip zone,” Kentucky offensive coordinator Wealthy Scangarello mentioned, in step with ESPN. “One of the crucial downsides is that we have had explosive [plays], however they are no longer scoring at all times. Chew performs are nice, but if bite performs get tackled at the 25 as a substitute of scoring, it is arduous.” 

Kentucky received’t simply be going through a stifling protection. 

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Georgia’s offense has lit up the scoreboard in 2022, averaging 509.6 yards and 40.6 issues in step with recreation. 

“They’re awfully spectacular in each manner, form or shape,” Kentucky head trainer Mark Stoops mentioned. “They need to be the place they are at, and we now have a super problem forward for us.”

Head coach Mark Stoops of the Kentucky Wildcats during the second half against the Missouri Tigers at Faurot Field/Memorial Stadium Nov. 5, 2022 in Columbia, Mo.

Head trainer Mark Stoops of the Kentucky Wildcats throughout the second one part towards the Missouri Tigers at Faurot Box/Memorial Stadium Nov. 5, 2022 in Columbia, Mo.
(Jay Biggerstaff/Getty Photographs)

Georgia has received the ultimate 12 matchups with Kentucky, and a win Saturday will put them one step nearer to a matchup with LSU and a travel to the CFP at the line. 

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“We in point of fact haven’t talked in regards to the SEC championship recreation,” Georgia trainer Kirby Sensible mentioned. “This isn’t our dialog. We stay our dialog relative to what’s one foot in entrance folks, and it’s by no means been discussed as a purpose, no one talks about that. We speak about Kentucky.”

No. 16 UCLA vs. No. 7 USC – 8 p.m. ET, FOX

It’s the Pac-12’s ultimate gasp at being represented within the Faculty Soccer Playoff. 

The convention has no longer had a group within the playoff for 5 directly years and has develop into an afterthought some of the Energy 5. 

Then Lincoln Riley left Oklahoma for the West Coast, and the Trojans returned to the principle level. 

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USC head coach Lincoln Riley during a game against the California Golden Bears Nov. 5, 2022, at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum in Los Angeles.

USC head trainer Lincoln Riley throughout a recreation towards the California Golden Bears Nov. 5, 2022, at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum in Los Angeles.
(Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire by the use of Getty Photographs)

However the college throughout the town may have one thing to mention about USC’s go back to the highest. 

“When each groups are excellent and there are numerous alternatives forward for each groups, it makes it manner, manner higher,” Riley mentioned this week, in step with ESPN. 

The Trojans sit down at 9-1, their best loss coming to an excellent Utah group in October. USC may have a excellent case for the Faculty Soccer Playoff if it defeats Notre Dame and most probably a extremely ranked Oregon or Utah group within the Pac-12 Championship Recreation to complete 12-1. 

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A loss and it’s virtually no doubt lighting out for Riley, USC and the Convention of Champions. 

It’s a matchup between two of the most efficient quarterbacks within the nation as Caleb Williams leads his Trojans into the Rose Bowl to tackle Dorian Thompson-Robinson and the Bruins. 

Quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson of the UCLA Bruins points toward the end zone against the Arizona Wildcats in the first half of a game at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena Nov. 12, 2022. 

Quarterback Dorian Thompson-Robinson of the UCLA Bruins issues towards the tip zone towards the Arizona Wildcats within the first part of a recreation on the Rose Bowl in Pasadena Nov. 12, 2022. 
(Keith Birmingham/MediaNews Crew/Pasadena Celebrity-News by the use of Getty Photographs)

It’s the 92nd time the crosstown opponents will face off, and there’s no love misplaced. 

“Clearly, we hate the ones guys throughout the town. It’s a sour feeling with the ones guys,” Thompson-Robinson mentioned. “We wish to be even higher (than ultimate yr). We wish to damage 60 and all that stuff. We’re seeking to enhance on the whole thing we’ve achieved this yr and maximize our recreation that manner.”

Thompson-Robinson leads an offense that has achieved its injury at the floor, 8th in school soccer with 240.1 yards in step with recreation speeding. 

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UCLA working again Zach Charbonnet leads the Pac-12 in speeding (1,145) and is tied for probably the most touchdowns at the floor (13). 

A win for UCLA helps to keep its slender Pac-12 championship hopes alive. 

USC is led via its passing assault (316.9 yards in step with recreation), with quarterback Caleb Williams throwing for 31 touchdowns and simply two interceptions in his first yr in LA.

“Caleb has performed no longer best in competition video games however giant video games with name implications. I really like the place our man has been and the battles he has been in,” Riley mentioned.

USC Trojans quarterback Caleb Williams makes a throw during a game against the Colorado Buffaloes Nov. 11, 2022, at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum in Los Angeles. 

USC Trojans quarterback Caleb Williams makes a throw throughout a recreation towards the Colorado Buffaloes Nov. 11, 2022, at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum in Los Angeles. 
(Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire by the use of Getty Photographs)

USC will want much more from Williams after shedding working again Travis Dye to a season-ending ankle damage towards Colorado in Week 11. 

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Williams’ most sensible goal, Pittsburgh switch Jordan Addison, is moment within the Pac-12 with seven receiving touchdowns. 

“It is surely one thing I have been serious about, coming to a brand new the town,” mentioned Addison. “I realize it’s a large recreation for this town, and other folks had been speaking about it, so I am beginning to get the sensation.”

It will have to be a high-scoring affair at a boughtout Rose Bowl.

Different video games of notice: 

No. 12 Oregon vs. No. 10 Utah – 10:30 p.m. ET, ESPN

Maryland vs. No. 2 Ohio State – 3:30 p.m. ET, ABC

No. 9 Clemson vs. Miami – 3:30 p.m. ET, ESPN

The Related Press contributed to this document


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