USC is headed to the Orange Bowl, after holding off UCLA 29-24 this weekend. While the score was close, the difference between these two teams is not. USC has now defeated UCLA in six consecutive years, and there are few signs of the Trojans letting up.UCLA is a talented team, but USC out-recruits everyone in the Pac-10 by a mile. As long as Pete Carroll is coaching Trojan football, and as long as he keeps playing amazing young freshmen who look like superstars every year, USC will remain a dominant football power.
UCLA boosters were probably even more upset this week by Notre Dame's firing of Tyrone Willingham. The move probably gave Karl Dorrell two more years of job security despite the fact that everyone in Westwood hates Dorrell. But LAist would like to Dorrell a vote of confidence. Like Willingham, Dorrell deserves time to build a program. This season, he slowly, but surely became more affable with the press and the public. He's learning that he can't always be chilly with the outside world.
Dorrell also now has a small opening in recruiting. He can feasibly tell recruits who want to be in LA, that they won't have to compete with 4 All-CIF players for playing time if they go to UCLA. And he can use the Bruins' passion in their close loss to USC as a positive sign. Will it work? Who knows. But it might be all Dorrell can do for now.
In the meantime, the USC-Oklahoma Orange Bowl matchup looks like it will be a terrific college football game. Both teams are better than Auburn, who is legitimately screwed by the NCAA's refusal to introduce a playoff.
As for UCLA... there's always the Pioneer PureVision Las Vegas Bowl against Wyoming.