Southern California Trojans vs. Arizona State Sun Devils Pick & Prediction MARCH 7th 2024

Southern California faces Arizona State on Thursday in Los Angeles, a game featuring two struggling programs trying to end the regular season strong ahead of next week’s Pac-12 tournament.

The Trojans (12-17, 6-12 Pac-12) have won three of their past five games, with the two losses a 92-89 double-overtime defeat at home against Colorado and a 75-72 loss at Pac-12 title contender Washington State.

Arizona State (14-15, 8-10) has dropped three of its past four games, but its win in that stretch was 73-61 result at home against the Cougars.

The Sun Devils are coming off an 85-67 home loss to then-No. 6 Arizona on Feb. 28.

“Although we’re not having a fantastic season, there are teams that are freaking brutal, right?” Arizona State coach Bobby Hurley said. “They just stink and they’ve given up and they don’t compete.

“That’s not what our team is doing. I know we’re all disappointed. We just lost to Arizona, but we might need a dose of reality.”

Arizona State defeated USC 82-67 in the previous matchup between the teams in Tempe, Ariz., on Jan. 20. Jose Perez had 20 points and four assists for the Sun Devils, while Frankie Collins finished with 17 points, seven assists and six steals.

The Sun Devils were 5-2 in the Pac-12 after that triumph, and they are 3-8 since.

“There have been a lot of times this year where we just folded,” Arizona State guard Adam Miller said. “When you fight, you’re not going to win everything, but what matters to me personally is the way you lose. It’s the way you go about life and take your losses.”

USC has tried to overcome injuries to starters Isaiah Collier and Boogie Ellis through most of the season. Both are back now and excelling.

Collier, a freshman, had a career-high 31 points on 14-of-20 shooting from the field in the Trojans’ most recent game, an 82-75 win at Washington on Saturday. Ellis contributed 17 points and four rebounds.

Neither of them played in USC’s loss at Arizona State last month.

The Trojans beat Washington despite nearly squandering a 15-point lead in the final six minutes. The Huskies got within three in the last minute before a Collier jumper and two free throws from DJ Rodman wrapped up the win,.

“We’ve had self-inflicted wounds late in games this year,” Trojans coach Andy Enfield said. “We turned it over three times in 1:20 up 15 with six to play in the game.”

–Field Level Media

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