UCLA's F-You to USC (Probably) Didn't Happen Last Night
It's rivalry week between UCLA and USC, who will meet for the "big game" on November 17, which means that both teams have been working around the clock to protect their mascots against pranksters.
It appeared that USC fired the first shot in the rivalry. But today a photo showing UCLA's Sproul Hall being turned into (literally) a giant "fuck you" to USC is making the rounds. Some, including TMZ, claim that it was taken last night, but it looks like that's not quite true.
First of all, we're guessing that if UCLA managed to pull off this prank in 2012, we'd be seeing multiple variations of the picture on Twitter/Tumblr/Facebook/whatever, but all we're seeing is the same shot from the same angle. Second, some at UCLA in this Reddit thread note that Sproul Hall is under construction, so this picture doesn't look current.
Finally, we found out that this photo looks exactly like a prank from 1977. Here's an excerpt of a 2006 story from The Bruin that describes the prank:
In a similar display of Bruin pride and support for UCLA’s basketball team, Tilles and fellow 1977 UCLA graduate Matt Natalizio helped organize an effort to let fans in Pauley Pavilion know what they thought of the visiting basketball team. “FUCK ’SC” was spelled in the lights of Sproul Hall and was easily visible from Pauley Pavilion, Natalizio said.
“The lights are like a grid and we figured out whose light needed to be on and whose needed to be off if we wanted to spell something,” he said.
So, yeah, we're going to go ahead and guess that this photo circulating today was taken decades before last night.