NEWS RELEASES

Sunday, December 24th, 2017

USC RETURNS TO THE PRACTICE FIELD, FOCUS ON OHIO STATE

The USC Trojans got into the holiday spirit with a lively 60-minute practice Sunday afternoon at Coppell High School.

Head coach Clay Helton complimented his squad on their collective focus in the team’s first practice since Tuesday. The Trojans went through their traditional Monday routine, touching on all three phases and working on the game plan to face Ohio State.

USC (11-2, 8-1 Pac-12) is eighth in the College Football Playoff rankings and Ohio State (11-2, 8-1 Big Ten) is fifth.

Helton was also very complimentary of the Buckeyes in anticipation of the two teams meeting on the gridiron for the 24th time. “(Ohio State) is a complete football team, in my opinion, that's coached by a guy that's a legend in our game, in Coach (Urban) Meyer,” said Helton. “So, this will be our biggest challenge of the year. It's by far the best team that we have played and, when you watch them on tape, the most complete team. And we look forward to the challenge.”

The challenge will be a daunting one for USC. The Trojans have dominated the series as of late, winning the last seven and eight of the last the last nine meetings. The two teams last met at Ohio Stadium on Sept. 12, 2009 when USC put together a memorable 86-yard drive, capped by TB Stafon Johnson’s two-yard run with 1:05 to play to escape with an 18-15 victory.

The next meeting between these two traditional powers comes in five days at AT&T Stadium. The Trojans got their first look at the facility Sunday afternoon, taking in the Dallas Cowboys-Seattle Seahawks game, before heading back to their headquarters hotel for a team holiday party.

USC will be back in Arlington Monday afternoon for the team’s first workout at AT&T Stadium.

The Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic celebrates its 82nd anniversary on Friday, Dec. 29. Airtime on ESPN is set for 7:30 p.m. CST, with kickoff slated for 7:40 p.m.

This marks the fourth consecutive year for the Goodyear Cotton Bowl to be a part of the ESPN bowl lineup. Bob Wischusen and Brock Huard are set to provide the call from the booth with Allison Williams reporting from the sidelines.

ESPN Radio returns as the Classic's national radio partner for the sixth consecutive year. Brad Sham, the "Voice of the Dallas Cowboys," teams with Rod Gilmore in the booth and Quint Kessenich on the sidelines to describe all the action from AT&T Stadium. This is Sham's 21st consecutive year as the Classic's play-by-play voice and his 25th overall.

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