It’s rivalry week here at SB Nation — and in continuing that trend — we’re taking a look at some of the biggest conquests in the USC Trojans vs UCLA Bruins rivalry. We discussed a comprehensive history of the Victory Bell earlier this week as well as why it Sucks to be U (cla).
Today, we’ll be discussing all of those lopsided victories in the series, all of them that of course belong to your USC Trojans.
Just off the bat, USC owns the series’ largest victory and it just so happens to be the first time the two met. Back in 1929, USC defeated UCLA 76-0. Led by Russ Saunders and Marshall Duffield that season, the Trojans cruised by their new crosstown rival back in 1929 in what was their first game of the season. They went on to finish 10-2 that season, defeating Pittsburgh in the Rose Bowl but their largest margin of victory that entire season was the game against UCLA.
That 76-0 victory is actually still the largest margin of victory in program history, followed closely by the 75-0 trouncing of Whittier in the early 1900s.
Outside of the 76-point victory over UCLA that still stands as the record win for the Trojans, USC also owns a 52-0 victory (1930), a 50-0 win (2011), a 47-point victory (2005), a pair of 35-point wins (1938, 1979) and a 31-point victory (2002). UCLA has but two 30 or more point victories in the series, each coming in the 50’s.
With that in mind, there’s also the fact that of USC’s 50 wins in the series, 33 of them were victories by at least two possessions. That’s more victories than UCLA has in the entire series combined. And upon even closer examination, UCLA’s wins have come closer than most, as 17 of them have been one-possession games and seven of those have been within a field goal difference (two more were just four-point victories).
USC not only owns the series against UCLA, they own the series against UCLA.
Let’s jump into those aforementioned big victories against UCLA. There’s little to be found out on pre-1970’s action — so to that end — anyone with any insight into the 1929, 76-0 victory or the 1930, 52-0 victory — please drop some info into the comments.
The 50-0 win in 2011 came in Lane Kiffin’s second season at the helm, and saw Matt Barkley tie his own record at the time with six touchdown passes. He was a whopping 35-of-42 through the air in that game and Robert Woods hauled in 12 catches for 113 yards.
The ‘05 season some will say never happened, but we all know it did, except for maybe the last game of that season. They trounced UCLA in the final game of the season, in front of College GameDay to boot. This was the 260-yard Reggie Bush outing that saw Matt Leinart only need to throw for 233 yards. Bush scored twice while LenDale White had three scores of his own.
In 2002, during Pete Carroll’s second season at USC, Carson Palmer threw for 254 yards and four touchdowns as 14 of the Bruins points came in garbage time of this one. Kareem Kelly had four catches for 94 yards and a touchdown to lead the way.
Again, USC owns UCLA.