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USC Football's Celebrity Apprentice

Campus guests Will Ferrell and Ray Lewis both vied for the lead role in "The Halfback at Notre Dame", but this week's performances offered the Trojans so much more.

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The Ed Orgeron Show is a hit! It swept the Emmys, Oscars, and Tonys (except for costume design - that award went to the Kinky Ducks) and is now officially on tour where it's inaugural stop is South Bend, as the interim head coach faces his first road test in a rivalry setting. Hollywood cannot write it any better!

I'm assuming, of course, that USC is back, right? The Trojans won an in-conference home game, so all faith in humanity must be restored and we're worthy of another high AP ranking until we lose again and a newly renovated Coliseum filled with puppies crumbles back down to the underworld. Hell, with Pat Haden recently appointed to the College Football Playoff selection committee, we'll be BCS bound in 2015 for sure!

We can afford to have a little fun, loosen our belts and exhale because there is absolutely nothing left to lose this season, and last Thursday's emotional victory over Arizona highlighted such. In fact, the culture change has already called for a Muppet-esque slew of celebrity cameos heading into our bout with Notre Dame.

Will Ferrell's visit this week may have come off as some wacky coincidence or hardly a blip on anybody's radar, but it will ultimately serve a greater purpose. It implants in the players' minds a more jovial state of play that Orgeron is beginning to install as the foundation of this team moving forward, a la the Pete Carroll days. Furthermore, the Trojan alumnus is reminding them how the Spirit of Troy, literally and figuratively, are forever banded together in supporting this football program through thick and thin.

Ron Burgundy was also caught trolling the Dodgers, indicating that San "Whale's Vagina" Diego has effectively disowned him.

Later on, USC was granted an assembly by a linebacker from the U. Ray Lewis proceeds to insinuate his rough upbringing and past legal allegations - and whether guilty or not there's no judgment because even without a Super Bowl ring he could just waltz down McClintock curtsying to the white-hatted men on segways. The heart of the message, however, lies in between 1:13-2:19.

Effort. It's the intangibles at least this Italian Trojan has been stressing for several seasons in the face of undeniable yet unfulfilled talent and sometimes scapegoated play calling. USC loses a game they're "not supposed to"? All motivation is drained and they fall to Georgia Tech in the unaesthetic Sun Bowl rather than punctuating a 6-6 campaign on a higher note. Marqise Lee is visibly disgruntled over bubble screens and indecision at the quarterback position? He drops passes and fumbles punt returns, despite any injury he is overcoming.

Needless to say, the stars (both astronomical and celebrity) have aligned perfectly in light of Lee's return, so let's persist in blocking out all of the nonsense and just play football. Attack relentlessly no matter who's physically inactive. Air out the long ball, Cody Kessler, and remember the backs stabled behind you.

In the end, the Fighting Irish may have Rudy, but this time around, the Trojans buttons might've been Pushed in all the right places: