USC Trojans quarterback Matt Barkley put up some impressive numbers against the Arizona Wildcats on Saturday, throwing for 493 yards and three touchdowns. However, he still failed to make plays down the stretch and in the red zone that could have won the game for USC, and his lack of growth in those areas should be blamed on head coach Lane Kiffin, according to Conquest Chronicles.
It's no secret that Kiffin is a supremely confident individual who has a larger effect on game action than most coaches. He has given Barkley the responsibility to change plays at the line, but the senior quarterback can't make decisions on the fly regarding clock management, as Kiffin is in control of that. That may be hampering Barkley, as he is not allowed to do what he thinks may be right for his team in the moment, and instead must wait for instructions. He has struggled in late game situations, and Kiffin's heavy hand plays a part in that, as Conquest Chronicles stated:
Kiffin has little history of developing a top fight QB. All the comparisons of Barkley to Leinart are laughable...Leinart's resume is filled with game ending heroics and smart play. Barkley has some great wins on his resume but those great end of game drives are few and far between. Barkley's numbers will put him as one of the greatest in school history but to me that came at a price...he can be erratic and still make poor decisions.
Barkley isn't even close to Leinart.
I put this on Kiffin.
The Trojans are now out of the national title picture and no longer are in complete control of their path to conference championship game. They can still play spoiler for another Pac-12 power on Saturday, when they take on Oregon.