USC Thumps Fresno State 52-13 Behind Kessler's Four Touchdowns

    Tailback Javorius Allen had 133 yards on 22 carries.
    Aug. 30, 2014

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    LOS ANGELES (AP) - Cody Kessler threw for 394 yards and four touchdowns and ran for another TD and the No. 15 USC Trojans won Steve Sarkisian's school debut in commanding fashion, beating Fresno State 52-13 on Saturday night.

    The Trojans ran a school- and Pac-12-record 105 plays while racking up 37 first downs and 701 yards of total offense to Fresno State's 17 first downs and 317 yards.

    "We were shooting for 80 plays," Kessler said, although Sarkisian knew that playing a no-huddle team in the Bulldogs would probably up that number.

    The Trojans scored early and kept going, with Nelson Agholor leading the way with two first-half touchdown grabs. He finished with five catches on the night for 57 yards.

    In all, 10 different Trojans caught passes in Sarkisian's up-tempo offense.

    "They were ready to play," Sarkisian said.

    Freshmen played a prominent part in the game as tight end Bryce Dixon and two-way player Adoree Jackson each had TD catches. Freshman JuJu Smith had four catches for 123 yards.

    Javorius Allen led the USC ground attack with 133 yards on 22 carries, including a nine-yard scoring run. Justin Davis added 30 yards on 12 carries and Jame Toland IV had 47 yards on 12 carries.

    The loss was the Bulldogs' third straight in the series with USC.

    Fresno State alternated quarterbacks Brian Burrell and Duke transfer Brandon Connette. Burrell was 11 of 19 with one interception and was the more productive of the two. Connette finished 7 of 17 for 68 yards with three interceptions.

    Tailback Marteze Waller scored both touchdowns for the Bulldogs. He finished with 97 yards on 16 carries.

    "Well, obviously, we didn't come ready to play to beat an excellent USC team," Fresno State coach Tim DeRuyter said. "We got outcoached and outplayed. You have to give them a lot of credit. ... We're not ready at this point to compete against a team like USC."