In Monday night’s season opener in Las Vegas, No. 21 Southern California (USC) secured an 82-69 victory against Kansas State. Boogie Ellis led the Trojans with an impressive performance, contributing 24 points and eight rebounds. Freshman Isaiah Collier made a strong USC debut, scoring 18 points, six assists, and receiving a standing ovation from the crowd before fouling out in the second half.
USC had a commanding lead of 19 points with 6:33 left in the game, but Kansas State fought back, narrowing the gap to eight points with 1:41 remaining. However, USC’s experienced players kept their composure and held on for the win.
Kobe Johnson added 16 points for the Trojans, while Joshua Morgan contributed 11 points. USC displayed their defensive prowess by limiting Kansas State to just 31% shooting from the field.
Tyler Perry led Kansas State with 22 points, and Cam Carter scored 15 points for the Wildcats. Despite the loss, Kansas State’s coach Jerome Tang acknowledged the challenge of facing a strong USC team, emphasizing the areas the Wildcats need to work on.
Bronny James, son of NBA star LeBron James, cheered his USC teammates from the bench but did not play. He is still recovering from a cardiac arrest during a summer workout and recently underwent surgery to address a congenital heart condition.
In the next games, Kansas State will face Bellarmine, while USC will host Cal State Bakersfield.