The Obvious – In the past couple of summer weeks, Trojan fans have seen the arrival of All-American boy John David Booty, prayed for the recovery of quarterback Brandon Hance, scratched their heads over the "Traveler" snafu, enjoyed ESPN Classic and Fox replays of great Trojan teams, and held their breath over the arrest of offensive tackle Winston Justice.
The Not So
Obvious – As the hot July weather in Southern California turns into a giddy
travel agent's dream, hot summer USC football headlines are beginning to look a
lot like television story lines for American Idol, ER, Animal Planet, That ‘70's
show, and Dragnet.
The Obvious –John David Booty has completed his
summer class, arrived for his brother's wedding, and attended the recent El
Camino College workout, though he did not participate.
The Not So Obvious
– While the John David Booty-to-USC story has received large globs of ink in the
Los Angeles Times and more recently USA Today because of his passing on his
senior season,, this is a kid that is coming into USC basically the same age as
the current Trojan freshman class having been held back in 5th grade. Enough
already about his leaving high school early. His body age alone is that of a
graduated senior – not to mention his many successful years of playing varsity.
The Obvious - Many Trojan fans' attention have focused on the recruiting
of prep stars such as linebacker Keith Rivers of Lake Mary High in
The Not So Obvious – For those who must know, Lake Mary HS is
located 10 miles north of Orlando. The "Rams" reside in a city that was
incorporated in 1973 and has a population of 12,359, according to the guide
proved by the Chamber of Commerce. Named after the wife of a minister who
settled on the northern shores of the lake, the town of Lake Mary dates back to
the 19th Century . It currently has 3 of Central Florida's top-rated country
clubs boasting championship courses – Heathrow, Alaqua, and Timacuan country
The Obvious – Transfer quarterback Brandon Hance was in attendance
but did not participate in the Trojans' 7 on 7 at El Camino college due to the
lingering effects of a form of meningitis,but is expected to be ready for camp
The Not So Obvious – According to the NMA (National Meningitis
Association), "College students, particularly freshmen living in dormitories,
have a higher risk of getting this contagious disease. Lifestyle factors common
among college students seem to be linked to the disease: crowded living
situations such as dormitories, going to bars, smoking and irregular sleep
habits. Freshman living in dormitories are up to six times more likely to get
the disease than other people". This is not to suggest that Hance contacted his
ailment at a USC dorm, but the the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention,
American College Health Association, and American Academy of Pediatrics
recommend all college students be immunized.
The Obvious – ABC's Keith
Jackson has mentioned many times on the air that the Trojan football program and
the school in general have one of the great symbols in college with the great
white horse called Traveler, who has been marketed so wonderfully both on
television and in University promotions.
The Not So Obvious – So it
comes during the great renaissance of Trojan football that we learn there is a
split between the famed horse's owners and the school. Your killing me,Larry
Smith!!!! Stop with the infighting, we've all had enough of it, so just get a
horse ready. No Traveler or a reasonable facsimile at the Coliseum would be like
Crosby without Hope, The Stones without Jagger, or Pooh without
The Obvious - As Trojan fans yearn for USC football from any era,
ESPN Classic and Fox Sports West have treated fans to some of the great moments
in cardinal and gold football history.
The Not So Obvious – As much as
Trojans fans love to watch these replays, the toughest part is finding out when
they are being televised. So it is with great pride that WeAreSC.com has added
Trojan televised football to our calendar. No more "Wheel of ESPN Classic and
Fox Fortune". Just go to the calendar and see when the Trojan are "On the Air".
The Obvious – Sophomore offensive tackle Winston Justice is arrested in
Long Beach in a prostitution sting, thus being the first real black eye for Pete
Carroll's near spotless record.
The Not So Obvious – Only Justice, his
family, and those deep in the Trojan football program know the truth of
Justice's arrest. Pete Carroll, however, has prided the Trojan program saying
over and over again he wants the program to be the benchmark that all other
programs hope to be. So there will be great interest in what punishment, if any,
Carroll elects to invoke. All eyes will be watching, especially the current and
past Trojan players.
The Obvious – USC has just released 2002: A Season
to Remember, a 60 minute highlight video of the Trojans' 11-2 season and sales
are going especially well.
The Not So Obvious – Having reviewed the DVD a
number of times, the highlight of the production is the pregame, halftime, and
postgame lockerroom footage featuring a VERY emotion Pete Carroll and staff.
There rare cameo shots of Carroll's assistants (Yes, Norm Chow does get excited
behind the public curtain), and some of the player comments are intimate looks
into the heart and soul of last year's stellar team.
The Obvious – The
Trojans' highlight DVD should have come out shortly after the Orange Bowl
victory over Iowa and not so close to the start of the coming season.
The Not So Obvious – The late arriving DVD is probably the reason the
back of the DVD case does not highlight the scores of the games but does promote
this season's schedule and a phone number to buy tickets. Smart move by those
involved marketing this product with the ticket order number.
– One of the symbols of competition between USC and UCLA is the advertising
driven Lexus Gauntlet Trophy, given to the school that gains the most points
during victorious head to head athletic competition.
The Not So Obvious –
Just when you thought that USC and UCLA could not produce more athletic
competition, at a recent UCLA freshman orientation session it was revealed by a
Bruin councilor that there is going to be a football competition between
orientation councilors from both schools. What next? Bull in the ring football
chancellor drills between Steven Sample and Albert Carnesale. Mama Mia.
The Obvious – "Fight On' is one of college football's most recognizable
fight songs and most Trojans know the words to sing along with Art Bartner's
The Not So Obvious – How many Trojan fans know that "Sons of
Westwood" is the Bruins' fight song. While we should save this for UCLA week,
how many Trojans know the words to thhe Bruins' song? Perhaps you would be
interested in knowing that there is one line to the Bruin fight song that reads
"And when they chance to see a man from USC, Ev'ry Bruin starts to roar". Well,
you learn something every day.
The Obvious – Three future Trojans
performed in last Friday evening 44th annual Brea Lions Orange County Prep
All-Star Game at Orange Coast College.
The Not So Obvious – If you went
just with just the public address announcer's recognition, the best player would
have been Tustin defensive end Chris Barrett, who showed tremendous closing
speed in chasing down North quarterbacks. If you had your "glasses" on Barrett's
offensive tackle teammate Sam Baker, who is slated for guard at USC, you saw a
real talent. The kid is a house and showed great feet and surprising agility in
pass blocking, especially coming from a Tustin running program.
Obvious – One player that Trojan fans want to know more about is massive Western
defensive tackle Fili Moala, who missed much of his senior season due to
The Not So Obvious – A VERY respected former high school and
college coach who watched all three future Trojans during all-star practice said
, "Moala will be a defensive player. This kid is a powerhouse and will be a
force on the Trojan defense. As for Barrett,, I wouldn't be at all shocked if he
slid down from defensive end to tackle. He is a super on defense, a speciman. As
for Baker, his dad (Arena League Commissioner Dave Baker) must have had somebody
give him extensive training on pass blocking since he came from a running school
The Obvious – Pete Carroll in two quick years has become
the talk of West Coast football and has turned the Trojans into a potential
national title contender.
The Not So Obvious – The same former legendary
prep coach said of Carroll, "I ve known Pete for many years and will tell you
the day he got hired I knew the Trojans would be back. He is exactly what USC
needed. Compare him to Larry Smith, Paul Hackett, and Ted Tollner." It should be
noted that this coach sent a number of players to Troy during the previous glory
The Obvious – During the Lou Holtz era at Notre Dame, the Irish
routinely punished the Trojans by unleashing a devastating ground game built
around physical offensive lines.
The Not So Obvious – It may have been a
blip under the normal Trojan fan's radar, but former legendary Notre Dame line
coach Joe Moore passed away recently at age 71. Moore's offensive lines gave the
Trojans fits. Moore was to Holtz what Hudson Houck was to the Trojans. Among the
stars Moore produced were Aaron Taylor, Tim Grunhard, Andy Heck, and Tim Ruddy.
Moore also coached at Pitt and mentored Bill Fralic and Mark May. Moore will be
remembered by some as the coach that won an age discrimination suit against Bob
Davie and the Irish. Moore coached at ND 1988-1996.
The Obvious – The
Trojans have offered Los Altos defensive end Brigham Harwell, considered one of
the West Coast's finest and hailing from the same school as Shaun
The Not So Obvious – While the rumor mill continues to point to
Harwell being a Bruin, it should be noted that the kid's rejecting of SC has
always been the fact the Trojan have been upfront about him playing in the
interior of the defensive line. Harwell wants to play defensive end or maybe
even linebacker. Tough choice for a kid who hears from NFL experienced Carroll
his best spot is inside. It appears that both sides are being honest with each
other. Score one for honesty.
The Obvious – According to our Garry P.,
All-American Whitney Lewis has removed himself from the Shrine Game slated for
this Saturday at Mt. San Antonio.
The Not So Obvious – It is shocking
that more kids do not pull out of these all-star games with so much of their
careers on the line. While most of these all-star games are for worthwhile
charities, the fear of injury and freshman playing time continues to be a
warning sign for these college-bound stars, especially those that are thinking
The Obvious – The Trojans open their season August 30th in a humid,
Deep South barnburner opener against the highly-ranked Auburn Tigers in a
stadium that seats 86,063.
The Not So Obvious - Auburn ticket manager Tim
Jackson has already called USC about returning unsold Trojan tickets – something
usually done the week before a game. Of the opener against the Trojans, Jackson
said, "I ve been calling them (USC) a lot earlier than I used to because I can
sell them. Even a Row 1 tickets, obstructed view, is getting high priority. You
can really see well." According to the Miami Herald, Auburn is approaching its
first home season sellout since 1985.
Obvious/Not-So-Obvious (Headlines edition)
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