Dedmon's put-back dunk off a missed free throw with 9:51 to play showed how badly USC wanted this one after losing four straight on the road this season—and 14 straight dating to last season.
Dedmon's 13 points, 13 rebounds and five blocks helped USC defeat Utah 76-59 on Saturday.
It was the Trojans' first Pac-12 road victory in 22 months as they improved to 7-10 overall and 2-2 in conference play,
"I was just ready," Dedmon said. "I had a twitch in the leg, so I just had to go and get it and I threw it down."
The dunk came in the midst of a 7-0 USC run that bumped the Trojans' lead to 15 points. Utah could get no closer than 10 the rest of the way.
"Tonight, we played hard for the full 40 minutes," said guard J.T. Terrell, who led the Trojans with 14 points. "I made shots and my teammates were looking for me and found me when I was open."
Terrell shot 5 of 10 overall, with a pair of 3-pointers.
"Coach has challenged me," Terrell said. "He wants me to take straight-line drives, not play with the ball so much, take good shots and lock up on the defensive end. Today, I felt I did all that.
"If we played every game like this, we have a good chance to do something big."
Utah, meanwhile, continues to look for its first Pac-12 win of the season. The Utes had dropped their first three conference
There was the overtime loss at Arizona State, a 60-57 heartbreaker against then-No. 3 Arizona in Tucson, and Thursday's setback at home against UCLA when Utah had three chances to take the lead in the final minutes, only to miss three wide-open 3-point attempts.
They couldn't get the shots to fall in this one, and it got away early. Not even a halftime ceremony that paid tribute to the Utes' three Western Athletic Conference championship teams from the 1980s could help.
"I thought we got manhandled, for the most part," Utah coach Larry Krystkowiak said.
Utah shot just shot 37.5 percent overall Saturday, including 4 of 15 from 3-point range.
Jarred DuBois led Utah with 18 points. Jason Washburn added 13 but saw his string of three straight double-doubles end as he corralled only four rebounds.
The Utes (8-8, 0-4) were within 50-42 on DuBois' 3-pointer with 10:26 remaining before USC's 7-0 run, which included a steal and fast-break layup by Terrell, then two free throws by Terrell after a technical foul on the Utah bench gave USC a 57-42 lead.
"We have not had guard scoring all year. J.T. and Jio (Fontan) have struggled, and there's no secret about that," USC coach Kevin O'Neill said.
Terrell came off the bench in the second half in a six-point loss to Colorado on Thursday.
"It's plain and simple, but it's taken 17 games to get it through his thick skull that if you don't guard your man and you take bad shots, then I'm not going to play you," O'Neill said. "But today he played well and played very much in control and played well defensively. Hopefully he is making some strides."
USC's road losing streak dated to last season, when the Trojans dropped their final 10 as visitors. The road win was the Trojans' first since Nov. 10, 2011, at UC Riverside. Their last Pac-12 road win came in their final road game of the 2010-11 season March 5, 2011, at Washington.
The Trojans were coming off a 66-60 loss at Colorado on Thursday in which they were outscored 24-6 over the final 10 minutes of the first half. This time, they closed the first half strong to take a 32-23 lead into the break.
Utah led 21-19 on a jumper by DuBois with 5:12 left in the first half, only to see the Trojans close on a 13-2 run, fueled by back-to-back 3-pointers by Terrell.
Overall, the Trojans shot 50 percent from the field and held a 39-30 edge in rebounding and an 11-7 advantage on second-chance points.
They also got help off the bench, with Omar Oraby adding eight points and four rebounds. He left for a while in the second half after injuring his ankle, but returned.
"We played too tough a schedule early on and that cost us some confidence," O'Neill said of what he called his "team of misfits."
"Hopefully this is a sign of things starting to come together."