I don't need to be motivated in order to get fired up for our annual meeting against UCLA.
I hate these guys all year long!
It is as natural as breathing. If you're a USC fan, wishing your rival any pain and misery while chuckling at their struggles is part of the price of admission.
This year is no different.
UCLA continues to, (insert adjective here) __________________ when it come to football.
Across town they are all fired up at getting a chance to get some payback for the "you call timeout, I call touchdown" play at the end of last years contest....
Not surprising, the majority of UCLA fans obsess with USC.
Oh sure, there are a fair amount of 'SC fans that keep tabs on UCLA but that is more about like watching a train wreck! Sometimes you just can't turn away...
The extra vitriol these days primarily comes because of the head ring master of the clown show across town...Rick Neuheisel. We all know the reasons so there is no need to rehash it now.
Neither team have anything to play for this season, so this one is all about pride.
And pride is a big deal.
I linked to and commented on this in the FanShots earlier...
One thing that was talked about going into the game was the tone of practices last week. While I thought they practiced harder and crisper than the previous week, they are still missing what I feel is a most important ingredient in any team—spirit. It is sorely lacking in this group as opposed to some years past. Just not a lot of emotion at practice, and it seems that way in games, too. They looked flat—against Notre Dame!!! More than one long time observer made the same comment. It CAN’T be that way.
No fiery pre-game speeches for the ages? No former players, stars of rivalry games past to regale the team with stories of glory? No history of the rivalry show to the guys to let them in on the fact that they’re playing in one of the biggest games of this or any year? Something is wrong with this picture.
GarryP - WeAreSC
I really didn't think about that...
No former players to rile the team up. No reminiscing of great games in the past? remember when ND Dragged in Digger Phelps and Lou Holtz.
That says a lot.
Teams take on the personality of their head coach...this is a pretty good example.
I got to thinking about it and decided to use it in a post as well.
There is simply no excuse for that. How do you not bring key players from the past to talk about the rivalry? How do you not set up a pep rally bringing in former players to fire up the students and alumni as well.
I know Kiffin has a lot on his plate but there is just no excuse for that!
The malaise of this team is mind boggling.
There is just too much at stake psychologically to take this game lightly. We don't want lip service, we want to see the school and the staff get behind these kids and fire them up.
Lane Kiffin knows the history of this rivalry...he lived it! He better be planning something to get these guys fired up to go out and kick UCLA's ass on Saturday night. I don't want to see an uninspired team like I did on Saturday night.
Call what you want...bragging rights or whatever, but this team needs to come out fired up a hell of a lot more than what we saw last Saturday night. Don't think for a minute that Slick Rick isn't going to use anything he can to motivate his guys. That last play last year embarrassed him as much if not more than his players.
He'll have the YouTube video above and pictures of the play plastered all over the UCLA locker room. He will constantly reference last years game...at least I expect him to because that is how his personality works.
He is going to try and use USC's malaise against them, so Kiffin better have our guys fired up. He needs to pull out the stops. I am surprised that I even have write this...
There is plenty of great history in this rivalry...on both sides. We are all pretty familiar with recent history...
But here is a blast from the past...
It started with a wink.
Johnnie Morton's subtle signal to USC quarterback Todd Marinovich indicated that all systems were go on a pass pattern that would finally put the Trojans over the top in their 1990 showdown against UCLA.
The Trojans and Bruins had slugged it out all afternoon at the Rose Bowl, neither able to shake the other in one of the most engrossing battles in the rivalry's storied history.
But USC wasn't finished.
And with 26 seconds to play, after a quick march downfield, the Trojans were 23 yards from the UCLA goal line.
It was then that Morton, a freshman wide receiver from South Torrance High, batted an eye toward Marinovich.
"I just felt like I was going to make a play," Morton says of his expectant gesture. "I just felt confident. I was like, 'Just throw it in there and I'll get it.' "
That is one of those plays that will live on like many others...
Here is the video of that game...
Like Erik Affholter's TD catch in '87.
None of his 123 receptions was as unforgettable as a juggling, corner-of-the-end zone catch he made against UCLA 20 years ago this week.
"No!" announcer Keith Jackson exclaimed on the television broadcast before reversing himself. "Yes! They call it [a] touchdown. He bobbled it after the ball got to him but apparently regained it just before he slid out."
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.
This play is still debated today as to whether or not it was a catch.
It was a dagger in the heart!
This rivalry has had some knock down drag out moments like in 1981...
Pat Haden was a big part of that as well so he needs to do his part as well. He better have something up his sleeve.
He better make damn sure that he has some former players coming in to fire the team up.
This game matters............A LOT!
Feel free to insert your adjectives in the comments!