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A Sense of Denial

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This has been covered elsewhere but I thought I would throw in my .02 cents.

Winning has its positives and negatives. The incredible run that SC has had over the past few years has spoiled diehard SC fans. It may have lulled some into a sense of invincibility. Losing tends to bring one back to earth with a sobering dose of reality. Anyone who thought that SC would continue to dominate UCLA for years to come is living in fantasyland. This month's loss to the Bruins was just a dose of reality that we all have to endure when rooting our team. It happens, we deal with it and move on.

But when reality happens the best way to deal with it is to accept it. We should embrace it and celebrate all that was accomplished before this humbling loss. That was not the case at this weeks USC football Awards Banquet. Boi From Troy, via AOL Fanhouse, and Displaced Trojan have some great write-ups about the lack of acknowledgement of the loss to UCLA at the banquet. Not dealing with it, in my own opinion, only perpetuates a sense of arrogance. Learning from the mistakes of this loss can only help us to prepare for the Rose Bowl. I am certainly not asking anyone to dwell on it but embrace it for what it is and move on.

Acting like it never happened leaves a bad taste in my mouth and to me it takes away from how hard this team has worked to overcome the adversity that it faced this year. With all the scares that we had this year combined with the devastating injuries on this team and the expected drop-off from what some would call a "rebuilding" year I think it's unfair to at least acknowledge the loss in some way.

Of course not acknowledging it can also send other messages. It could also be seen as a vote of no confidence on OC's Lane Kiffin and Steve Sarkisian. That is only speculation on my part. But suffice it to say that the two biggest losses of SC's big run have been at the hands of Kiffin. I can accept the OSU loss as just coming out flat and committing a ton of mental mistakes but the Loss to Texas in The Rose Bowl in January and this loss to UCLA along with questionable play calling and comments, throughout the season, that I perceive as flippant only show me that Kiffin has not yet grasped the importance of what the tradition is here at SC.

I think BFT nails it on the head:

I find the denial at Heritage Hall over that game troubling, since if we cannot acknowledge our failures, how can we hope to avoid them in the future?

I couldn't have said it better myself.