Beginning with football, several USC players have been named semifinalists for awards. Robert Woods has been placed on the list for the Biletnikoff Award for Best WR and the Maxwell Award, Andre Heidari has been nominated for the Lou Groza award for best K, Matt Kalil has been nominated for the Rotary Lombardi Trophy, T.J. McDonald has been nominated for the Jim Thorpe Award for Best DB, and Matt Barkley has been nominated for the Maxwell, O'Brien, and Walter Camp Awards.
No nominees have been named yet for the Joseph V. Paterno Coach of the Year award...
Now the news.WOMEN'S BASKETBALL: The Women of Troy got off to a good start last Friday with a 65-57 victory over Fresno State. USC has moved up a spot to #22 on the USA Today/ESPN Poll. Jacki Gemelos had her first career double-double last week, and seniors Ashley Corral and Brianna Gilbreath have now both passed the 1,200 career-point mark. USC will play Nebraska and #11 Georgia on the road this weekend.
SWIMMING AND DIVING: The USC swim teams headed down to Arizona last weekend to face the Sun Devils and Wildcats. The women beat both schools to remain undefeated at 4-0 while the men split the weekend with a victory over ASU and a loss to Zona. The men are now 2-1 and ranked #8. The women are ranked #5. Next up is the Arena Invitational at Long Beach this weekend.
WOMEN'S VOLLEYBALL: Wow. What a weekend for this team. The women's volleyball team faced off against the #20 Ducks and the Beavers and beat both in straight sets. Meanwhile, UCLA, Nebraska, and Stanford all suffered defeats over the weekend. Not only does this give USC the outright lead in the Pac-12, but it has also made them the #1 team in the AVCA poll. So, with three games left in the season, #1 USC will play their final home games against the Arizona schools this weekend.
MEN'S WATER POLO: But the biggest weekend in the entire athletic program might be faced by the men's water polo team. #1 USC finished its final home game of the season by beating Concordia 10-5, and then beat #7 Pacific 11-10 in overtime to remain undefeated in MPSF play. Now the final game of the season will take place @ UCLA on Friday, and both teams are tied for #1 on the rankings poll. It's #1 vs. #1 in Westwood, and it will decide who goes into the MPSF tournament with the top seed.
Speaking of Westwood, USC has decided to guard their statues a week early. Tommy and Traveler are already wrapped up in duct tape, and George Tirebiter is guarded by his doghouse. UCLA has taken similar precautions to protect its Bruin statue.
You know, back during the Roman Empire, in the months leading up to the Third Punic War in which Rome would defeat the Carthaginian Empire once and for all, the infamous senator Cato The Elder ended every one of his speeches with the phrase, "Carthage must be destroyed." That must be where the idea for the phrase "wholesale regime change in Westwood" came from.