Jerry Crowe in today's L.A. Times has a great story on former USC Wide Receiver Erik Affholter. Recruited as a kicker, Affholter had a decent career at SC before going off to the NFL where he had an average career.
Of course Affholter will always be remembered for USC's version of "The Catch"...
The fourth-quarter touchdown pass from quarterback Rodney Peete provided the winning points in a 17-13 USC upset at the Coliseum on Nov. 21, 1987, sending the unranked Trojans to the Rose Bowl and the fifth-ranked, Troy Aikman-led Bruins into denial. Aikman offered the postgame opinion that UCLA was still the better team and Bruins fans protested that the winning touchdown was a gift from the officials. Affholter, they argued, had not secured possession of the ball before sliding out of bounds. Replays were inconclusive.
"Here in Arizona, literally two doors down, we've got a UCLA guy who still can't get over it," Affholter says. "I just laugh. It's fun to talk about, but literally they can't get over it. For UCLA, that was probably their greatest team of all-time."
Adds the former receiver, referring to the coach of that UCLA team, "Every time I see Terry Donahue, he grabs his heart and tells me I made him cry."
Just one of the many great memories from what used to be a good rivalry, it's sad really that it doesn't mean as much to some as it used to be.
Affholter is one of the many former SC football players that have gone on to do good things with his life and become a productive member of society. It's a shame that these sorts of stories don't more exposure instead of all the other crap that we read out there.