Is This UCLA's Year?: College Football Schedule
These are strange times for college football in Southern California with things looking bright for UCLA.
UCLA comes into Saturday with an 8-2 record while USC is 7-3. UCLA (17, AP; 16, USA Today; 17, BCS) comes into the matchup ranked higher than USC (21, AP; 21, USA Today; 18, BCS) for the first time since 2001 when the 20th ranked Bruins met the unranked Trojans in the Coliseum. This has all the makings of one of the classic rivalry games which has a lot of people taking note.
TOMS shoes have entered the fray with both school colors represented in TOMS Campus Classics which is only available of their website. Like all other TOMS purchases, a pair of shoes will be given to a child in need for every pair bought through their One for One program.
We've seen UCLA and USC tortilla chips, UCLA and USC cookies, so I suppose we can make way for UCLA and USC shoes.
This is the sort of game that Rick Neuheisel envisioned when he took the job in Westwood after claiming the football monopoly in Los Angeles is over. At least he will have a comfortable seat in a San Francisco studio for the Pac-12 Network to watch the game.
Noted USC blogging hype man and former LAist contributor Zack Jerome did his thing on his Lost Angeles Blog, pointing out UCLA's demand that USC's drum major doesn't plant his sword in the 50-yard line and mercilessly ridiculing the Bruins.
Of course Jerome will be flying into Los Angeles from his new home deep in Duck Country. Perhaps he is now starting to hedge his bets given how disappointing his Trojans have been this season.
As the Bruin fans who have started to emerge from hibernation at the glint of hope they have showed in ten games this season, they shouldn't hold their breaths.
In the aforementioned game in 2001 when the Bruins outranked the Trojans, the Trojans blanked UCLA to the tune of 27-0. The last time UCLA gave their fans hope going 9-1 into the USC game then choked in the Coliseum 66-19 in 2005.
The Bruins have a tendency to fold when the spotlight shines on them. Even with Jim Mora as head coach they wilted when they went up to Memorial Stadium in Berkeley losing 43-17 to California. Even last week if not for an explosive second quarter the Bruins could have lost to the hapless Cougars of Washington State. They barely escaped there with a 44-36 win.
Until the Bruins prove me wrong, much like the Clippers, it's hard for me to take them seriously. This could be the case of history repeating itself in the 10-2 2005 season under Karl Dorrell.
Even Las Vegas has the Trojans as 3 1/2 point road favorites.
The Bruins can say all they want about Brett Hundley, Joseph Fauria, Johnathan Franklin and Shaquelle Evans, the Trojans have Matt Barkley, Robert Woods, Silas Redd, Curtis McNeal and the transcendent Marqise Lee.
I did note how disappointing the Trojans have been this season, a promise that's been unfulfilled. Sure there's still a chance to play in the Rose Bowl for USC, but it's a far cry from the BCS Championship aspirations that have been whispered around town since last winter.
Sorry Bruins. It's still the Trojans town until you can prove otherwise. And I don't quite believe yet.
The Trojans will win 35-21.
USC colored TOMS shoes. (image used with permission)
Western Carolina at Alabama. 9:00 a.m. KDOC.
Florida State at Maryland. 9:00 a.m. ESPNU.
Iowa at Michigan. 9:00 a.m. ESPN.
Northwestern at Michigan State. 9:00 a.m. ESPN2.
Central Florida at Tulsa. 9:00 a.m. FSWest.
Tennessee Tech at Austin Peay. 9:00 a.m. Fox College Sports Atlantic.
Temple at Army. 9:00 a.m. CBS Sports Net.
Yale at Harvard. 9:00 a.m. NBC Sports Net.
Lehigh at Lafayette. 10:00 a.m. Fox College Sports.
Washington at Colorado. 10:30 a.m. FX.
Bethune-Cookman at Florida A&M. 11:00 a.m. ESPN Classic.
USC at UCLA. Noon Fox.
Washington State at Arizona State. Noon Pac-12 Net.
South Florida at Miami (FL). Noon Prime Ticket.
Mississippi at LSU. 12:30 p.m. CBS.
Wake Forest at Notre Dame. 12:30 p.m. NBC.
Ohio State at Wisconsin. 12:30 p.m. ABC.
Duke at Georgia Tech. 12:30 p.m. ESPNU.
North Carolina State at Clemson. 12:30 p.m. ESPN2.
Texas Tech at Oklahoma State. 12:30 p.m. FSWest.
Texas State at Navy. 12:30 p.m. CBS Sports Net.
Colorado State at Boise State. 12:30 p.m. NBC Sports Net.
Wyoming at UNLV. 1:00 p.m. TWC SportsNet.
Cal Poly at Northern Arizona. 3:00 p.m. Fox College Sports.
Oklahoma at West Virginia. 4:00 p.m. Fox.
Syracuse at Missouri. 4:00 p.m. ESPNU.
Tennessee at Vanderbilt. 4:00 p.m. ESPN2.
Iowa State at Kansas. 4:00 p.m. FSWest.
Old Dominion at James Madison. 4:00 p.m. NBC Sports Net.
Kansas State at Baylor. 5:00 p.m. ESPN.
UTEP at Southern Mississippi. 5:00 p.m. CBS Sports Net.
Stanford at Oregon. 5:15 p.m. ABC.
California at Oregon State. 7:30 p.m. Pac-12 Net.
Arizona at Utah. 7:30 p.m. ESPNU.
BYU at San Jose State. 7:30 p.m. ESPN2.