O/NSO - Holiday Gift edition

T'was a week before Pasadena, and all through the land, not a Trojan was stirring not even Art Bartner's band. The cardinal and gold stocking were hung on the roses with care, in hopes that a national championship would soon be placed there. And then in a twinkling he got out of his slay, bringing the Obvious and Not So Obvious holiday gifts without further delay

The Obvious – T'was a week before Pasadena, and all through the land, not a Trojan was stirring not even Art Bartner's band. The cardinal and gold stocking were hung on the roses with care, in hopes that a national championship would soon be placed there. And then in a twinkling he got out of his slay, bringing the Obvious and Not So Obvious holiday gifts without further delay.

The Not So Obvious – Then with a dash I knew not the matter, Wolverines, Wolverines started to chatter. Navarre, Perry, and Edwards are coming our way, but let's put them away and enjoy Christmas Day.

The Obvious gift for head coach Pete Carroll – A national championship and a bag full of blue-chip recruits.

The Not So Obvious Gift – Offensive coordinator Norm Chow for five more years.

The Obvious gift for Norm Chow – A healthy pay raise and contract extension, of course.

The Not So Obvious Gift – A chance for your son, Chandler, to be at USC during that contract extension so you can both enjoy your Trojan experience together.

The Obvious gift for quarterback Matt Leinart – An All-American performance in the Rose Bowl.

The Not So Obvious Gift – An offensive line for the 2004 season that protects him as well as this season's unit.

The Obvious gift for offensive line coach Tim Davis – A few more Jacob Rogers.

The Not So Obvious Gift – His own radio or television show. Guy reminds many of Christopher Lloyd as the professor in Back to the Future series.

The Obvious gift for defensive coordinator Ed Orgeron – Wild Bunch 3.

The Not So Obvious Gift – The signing of prep All-America defensive end Jeff Schweiger of San Jose Valley Christian.

The Obvious gift for strength and conditioning coach Chris Carlisle – Continued good health.

The Not So Obvious Gift – Another incoming group of freshmen and transfers willing to buy into the program.

The Obvious gift for tight end Matt Cassel – A catch in the Rose Bowl.

The Not So Obvious Gift – Peace of mind.

The Obvious gift for redshirt tight end Alex Holmes – A healthy body in 2004.

The Not So Obvious Gift – A coaching position on the USC staff upon the conclusion of his football career. Perhaps recruiting "host" coordinator?

The Obvious gift for All-America receiver Mike Williams – A couple of one-handed catches in that cardinal and gold Pasadena end zone.

The Not So Obvious Gift – A crunching Oregon State-style block on some of Lloyd Carr's Wolverines.

The Obvious gift for fullback Brandon Hancock – A healthy Rose Bowl.

The Not So Obvious Gift – A pass reception out of the backfield rumbling down the Michigan sideline. Catch me if you can!

The Obvious gift for ABC's Keith Jackson – Another legendary call of the Rose Bowl.

The Not So Obvious Gift – Another of your editorials ripping the BCS computers and proclaiming the Trojans are as good as there is in 2003.

The Obvious gift for defensive tackle Shaun Cody – A productive Rose Bowl game that erases the pain of missing last year's Orange Bowl.

The Not So Obvious Gift – A chance to show the country you've returned to your potential with a big effort against All-Big Ten guard David Baas.

The Obvious gift for nose tackle Mike Patterson – A couple of sacks against Michigan quarterback John Navarre.

The Not So Obvious Gift – A Keith Jackson comment comparing you to Warren Sapp…...without the baggage.

The Obvious gift for running backs Hershel Dennis, Reggie Bush, and LenDale White – A little "Deuce" coup which moves, cuts, and explodes on the open road like your typical 2003 Trojan tailback.

The Not So Obvious Gift – The real "Deuce" , JC All-America offensive lineman Taitusi "Deuce" Lutui (6-6, 350), who figures to provide the Three Amigos some "open road" holes that brings a smile to all tailbacks. You don't drive a spike with a tack hammer.

The Obvious gift for the Coliseum – Just stay the way you are, young lady.

The Not So Obvious Gift – A temperature gage that works.

The Obvious gift for athletic director Mike Garrett – A Kleenex box for your tears of joy should the Trojans defeat Michigan for the national championship.

The Not So Obvious Gift – After all these years, one "Twilight Zone carry" against the Wolverines in the Rose Bowl to know what playing on New Year's Day really felt like.

The Obvious gift for the Rose Bowl – Beautiful weather on New Year's Day that befits a national championship game.

The Not So Obvious Gift – One more chance to remind the country that the tradition of the Pac-10 and Big Ten in Pasadena is as good as it gets.

The Obvious gift for All-American defensive end Kenechi Udeze – A three-sack day of Michigan quarterback John Navarre.

The Not So Obvious Gift – One clear shot at Navarre coming off the edge. Ah, that sounds so delicious.

The Obvious gift for quarterback John David Booty – A healed wrist in time for the Rose Bowl.

The Not So Obvious Gift – Patience.

The Obvious gift for quarterback Brandon Hance – A second Rose Bowl ring.

The Not So Obvious Gift – Readiness and preparedness for New Year's Day should you get the call.

The Obvious gift for Traveler – The energy to make it down Colorado Blvd for the Rose Parade.

The Not So Obvious Gift – A cameo appearance inside the Rose Bowl.

The Obvious gift for All-America tackle Jacob Rogers – Another sackless effort against the Maize and Blue on Jan. 1.

The Not So Obvious Gift – A chance to block Michigan freshman defensive end LaMarr Woodley, who was highly recruited last year by the Trojans.

The Obvious gift for associate athletic director Bob Donlan, who is the Trojans' admissions coordinator – A national championship ring.

The Not So Obvious Gift – A picture of it on you finger so you can send it to Cory Johnson, former athletic director at Cal St. Long Beach, who always flashed his Miami ring during your time at 49'erville.

The Obvious gift for linebacker Matt Grootegoed – A ligament in your ankle strong enough so you can play in the Rose Bowl.

The Not So Obvious Gift – An injury free senior year next fall.

The Obvious gift for SID Tim Tessalone – Two Heisman candidates to push next year in quarterback Matt Leinart and wide receiver Mike Williams.

The Not So Obvious Gift – A good Rose Bowl performance by both studs allowing ABC to begin the drumbeat before a national audience of media and fans.

The Obvious gift for Trojan voice Pete Arbogast – A 1540 radio station that that has less affiliates and even less interference.

The Not So Obvious Gift – A 50,000 watt clear-channel station reaching to the mighty Mississippi.

The Obvious gift for former Trojan quarterback Paul McDonald – Getting to see your son dress for the Rose Bowl.

The Not So Obvious Gift – Taking one snap.

The Obvious gift for Trojan fans attending the Rose Bowl – An orderly and less congested parking plan leading into the Rose Bowl.

The Not So Obvious Gift – An even more orderly and less congested parking plan leading OUT of the Rose Bowl.

The Obvious gift for freshman running back Reggie Bush – An 80-yard run similar to O.J. Simpson weave and cut against Ohio State in the 1969 Rose Bowl.

The Not So Obvious Gift – A flashback to when you thought you might be attending Stanford or Notre Dame out of high school as you are warming up on the floor of the Rose Bowl gunning for a national championship.

The Obvious gift for punter Tom Malone – A couple of booming punts in the Rose Bowl to show the nation you are as good as it gets at the collegiate level and a first-team All-America in anybody's book.

The Not So Obvious Gift – Your last punt landing inside the Michigan one-yard line with one minute to go and the Trojans leading.

The Obvious gift for injured defensive end Omar Nazel – You just received it when doctors gave you the "Go" to finish your Trojan career in the Rose Bowl and play against the Wolverines.

The Not So Obvious Gift – You've also been given the final opportunity to give one of your patented pre-game speeches surpassing your Orange Bowl oration. "War time, baby. Let's take it outside!"

The Obvious gift for the family of the late Drean Rucker – Peace of mind and an enjoyable Rose Bowl experience.

The Not So Obvious Gift – A Trojan national championship ring with your son's name and number.

The Obvious gift for middle linebacker Lofa Tatupu – A great performance in the Rose Bowl in front of your former Trojan fullback father, Mosi.

The Not So Obvious Gift - A victory over Michigan so you can equal your father's victory total over the Wolverines. Daddy Tatupu's club defeated UM 14-6 in the 1977 Rose Bowl.

The Obvious gift for WeAreSC.com publisher Garry P. – Your own WeAreSC.com radio show with your usual cast of characters.

The Not So Obvious Gift – A Trojan recruiting segment on the weekly USC Fox Sports West show with that Greek fellow.

The Obvious gift for free safety Jason Leach – A clean "kill" shot at Michigan All-America tailback Chris Perry.

The Not So Obvious Gift – The knowledge that your Bishop Amat heritage of Young, Haden, McKay, Jackson, and McCutcheon has led the Trojans to many glorious victories in the Arroyo Seco on New Year's Day.

The Obvious gift for freshman tailback LenDale White – A touchdown performance in the Rose Bowl that will bring back memories of Sam "Bam" Cunningham against Ohio State in the 1973 Rose Bowl.

The Not So Obvious Gift – One "Bam" leap over the pile into the end zone for all the AARP Trojan fans.

The Obvious gift for UCLA television analysts Matt Stevens – A Petros Papadakis bobblehead doll.

The Not So Obvious Gift – For Petros Papadakis, a cardinal and gold color hairstyle for his New Year's Day broadcast and telecast extravaganza.

The Obvious gift for legendary Trojan radio voice Tom Kelly – One last radio call of a Trojans' game in the Rose Bowl for the national title.

The Not So Obvious Gift – A chance to narrate an update of the Trojan Video Gold series, highlighting the history of Trojan football. The Pete Carroll era is beckoning your golden throat. Oh, mercy nurse!

The Obvious gift for wide receiver Keary Colbert – A day in Pasadena that proves you belong on the All-Pac-10 team regardless of the numbers' limitations.

The Not So Obvious Gift - A career day on January 1 that brings out the best of Keith Jackson's similes.

The Obvious gift for readers of WeAreSC.com and the O/NSO – May the good Trojan in the sky bless all of you this holiday season and may your New Year's be washed in a sea of cardinal and gold celebration.

The Not So Obvious Gift - May Mrs. 23blast some day understand the passion and glory of USC football that has run through the veins of Mr. 23blast since 1962. Of course, what do you expect from a Wisconsin graduate? They still can't get over that 1963 Trojan Rose Bowl win over the Badgers. Cheeseheads!


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