Birth Of The Utah Utes And USC Trojans College Football Rivalry

Oct 19, 2023, 2:57 PM

SALT LAKE CITY – Although the Utah Utes have more history against other teams, the rivalry with the USC Trojans has become more heated in recent years.

From 2011 to 2020, the Utes won just three of the 10 matchups between the schools. However, Utah has won the last three games and did so in convincing fashion.

Utah’s biggest rival is still undoubtedly the BYU Cougars. The history can’t be ignored there.

With that said, that rivalry lived its best days when the schools shared a spot in the WAC and the Mountain West. So, who has been Utah’s biggest rival in the Pac-12 era?

Many would say that it is the USC Trojans.

2021 Conference Game In Los Angeles

The Utes walked into Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on October 9, 2021, as the underdogs.

After striking first with a field goal late in the first quarter, USC got outscored 35-7 over the next two quarters.

Two fourth-quarter touchdowns from the Trojans weren’t enough to overcome the deficit as the Utes picked up a 42-26 win on the road.

It was just the second time in the school’s history that Utah dropped 40 points on USC.

Trojans Look For Road Redemption In 2022

Utah’s win over USC on October 16, 2022, was debatably the Utes’ biggest regular season win in the Pac-12.

The Trojans were ranked No. 7 and had yet to lose at 6-0. Utah was ranked No. 20 despite already having two losses early in the year.

The game went back and forth from the kickoff. USC jumped out to an early 14-0 lead but neither team took their foot off the gas.

Cam Rising recorded two fourth-quarter rushing touchdowns which resulted in Utah trailing USC 42-41 with less than a minute left.

Rising called his own number with the game on the line, taking a two-point conversion into the end zone for a one-point lead and the win.

Utah Faces USC On Biggest Stage To Date

After the upset earlier in the season, the Trojans looked to get revenge in the Pac-12 title game.

But the Utes had other plans.

Just like a few months prior, the Trojans jumped out to an early lead. USC led 17-3 in the second quarter.

Just before halftime, Ja’Quinden Jackson and Jaylen Dixon found the end zone to tie the game at 17 going onto the break.

Utah then went on to outscore USC 30-7 in the second half, securing their second-straight Pac-12 championship and sending the USC rivalry into full-swing.

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Chandler Holt is a co-host for the Jazz Notes podcast and a Digital Sports Producer for KSLSports.com, specializing in all things basketball and football. Follow Chandler on Twitter @ChandlerHoltKSL or on Threads @chandlerho1t.

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Birth Of The Utah Utes And USC Trojans College Football Rivalry