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Just a couple of brief things this morning.

The Norm Chow to ucla talk is generating a lot of interest since Chow was fired by the Tennessee Titans yesterday. I am just not seeing it, s I said yesterday if Chow thought PC wasn't giving enough credit when he is at SC what does he think Slick Rick is going to do?

Chow, who interviewed to become UCLA's head coach in December, acknowledged Tuesday night that UCLA had contacted his oldest son, Carter, who is his agent. Chow, 61, has two years left on a contract that will pay him more than $1 million a year. UCLA is believed to have between $300,000 and $400,000 available for an offensive coordinator.

Asked if he was interested in joining the Bruins staff, Chow said, "At this point in time, I'm going to sit back and stay home and walk the dog and think about some stuff. My wife and I have been apart for three years and we're going to enjoy being together."

Chow will get paid a lot of money to sit out and get to know his family again. I also think Chow has too much pride to work for ucla in a capacity less than what he interviewed for. I also think Slick Rick is doing it just to poke SC in the eye and that is the wrong reason to hire someone.

Plaschke is on the bandwagon as well. He seems impressed that RN would go after Ken Norton as a coach and then have the temerity to after Chow.

This hot blast of fresh Bruin has turned his first off-season into a two-minute drill, risks taken, stereotypes shaken, news flying everywhere.

About the only thing more brash would be an attempt to hire former Trojans offensive coordinator Norm Chow.

Who, incidentally, was fired from the Tennessee Titans on Tuesday.

Everyone duck.

"There is no doubt, this shows that Rick is secure in himself and his approach," said David Norrie, former UCLA quarterback and an analyst for ESPN and ABC. "He's going after any coach he thinks would be the best for his staff, no matter what."

If Chow would come, Neuheisel would hire him, a move that would rattle parts of this town from now until Dec. 6.

If the attempt to hire Norton was a jab, the successful hiring of Chow would be a roundhouse.

The offensive mastermind behind two USC national titles and Heisman Trophies sitting in the press box for UCLA?

Nice try Huckleberry. Bring Chow in, I know he can develop talent but without an offensive line to protect the QB I don't care how good he is at developing a QB. Case in point is Vince Young, VY was running for his life this season and with no one to throw to you can see why he tried to put team on his shoulders.

Anyway........

About that basketball game this Saturday, I'm not kidding myself SC is going to get hammered on Saturday. The bruins have too much depth and SC is playing too erratic for them to be competitive. There is an interesting article in the DN about the differences between the two programs.

Same game. Same city. Same conference.

Different worlds.

UCLA and USC play basketball a few miles apart. But their differences are significant in both style and substance.

Attend a home game for each program, as we did last Saturday, and the contrasts come into focus.

You want tradition? A cathedral as home court?

That's UCLA and Pauley Pavilion.

You want innovation? A cutting-edge arena?

That's USC and the Galen Center.

And it goes from there. Divergent playing styles, recruiting patterns, fan amenities, expectations ...

It's a good read and pretty on the mark. The fact is SC has a long way to go and this team needs to grow. I am not going to fool myself into thinking that SC is all of a sudden going to be a powerhouse in hoops but I'm also not going to be intimidated by ucla. They have yet to win a title under "no offense Ben" and while getting to back-to-back final fours is nice the clowns from across town who like to tout all those old banners in Pauley won't have anything to cheer about until BH brings one home.

This game is more important to us than it is too them but don't be fooled its not more important than any other game in the conference. SC has played well against top talent in the past only to fall short, for ucla this is just a bump in the road but it is a rivalry game and anything can happen.

Asked about the significance of playing the Bruins in his first season, the Trojans coach responded, "There's just no way in the world you can put forth any more effort than we've put in for Arizona or Arizona State or Washington State in terms of preparation."

A year later, after Floyd had split his first two games against UCLA counterpart Ben Howland, it was pretty much the same theme. "In the whole scheme of things," Floyd said, "it is another conference game that is very important because it's your next one."

Then there was this from Floyd on Monday: "We treat every game with great importance and they're all important in this league."

It's not that Floyd doesn't think Saturday's game against No. 4 UCLA at Pauley Pavilion is vital; it's just that he doesn't want to attach a disproportionate amount of significance to any one of his team's 18 regular-season Pacific 10 Conference games.

I will be more concerned about this team developing into a better unit, if we beat ucla great, if not I don't lose anything as it was expected but you never know.

AO will have his game preview up in the coming days so we will look at it more closely then.

I hope to have more later today.