O/NSO - Telecommunications edition

This is the critical time of the year for hard core Trojan football fans, who eagerly await the release of kickoff times to better arrange travel and tailgate agendas. Based on the fact that the American Broadcasting Company announced this week that four Cardinal and Gold games will have a Coliseum 5:00 p.m. kick-off, it looks like a Pacific Daylight Time candlelight dinner for Trojan fans, courtesy of Grand Old Lady electricity.

The Obvious – This is the critical time of the year for hard core Trojan football fans, who eagerly await the release of kickoff times to better arrange travel and tailgate agendas. Based on the fact that the American Broadcasting Company announced this week that four Cardinal and Gold games will have a Coliseum 5:00 p.m. kick-off, it looks like a Pacific Daylight Time candlelight dinner for Trojan fans, courtesy of Grand Old Lady electricity.

The Not So Obvious – With coach Pete Carroll telling his Trojan Club tour stops that game day tickets at the Coliseum aren't expected to be available, the next best announcement comes from ABC that those that must root on the Men of Troy from their super bonus room will watch the proceeding in high definition. The best investment the O/NSO has made in years was buying a 50-inch HDTV last December, despite stiff opposition from the lady of the house. Of course, don't expect your humble wordsmith to be glued to Mr. Sony when the Trojans are performing. Folks, there is high definition and then there is Coliseum definition, if you know what I mean.

The Obvious – The five Trojan ABC night games will be Nebraska, at Arizona, Arizona State, Cal, and Notre Dame.

The Not So Obvious – It's expected that Brent Musburger, Bob Davie, and Lisa Salters will provide the ABC commentary. At least they are expected to be in national telecasts against Nebraska and Notre Dame. With Arizona, Arizona State, and Cal part of a split national feed, the American Broadcasting Company will be under the gun in replacing the legendary Keith Jackson for the West Coast audience. Even with his golden years miscues and misidentifications, Jackson was still clearly in a class by himself. Maybe ESPN's Ron Franklin would add credibility, but we doubt the University of Connecticut at Bristol would take him off the lead team. Brad Nessler, who resides in Georgia? Please, how this guy even got to the level of calling a national championship game is beyond our limited comprehension. Dan Fouts? There has been some talk about Fouts doing some play by play, but that might be a reach.

The Obvious – Thanks to their dominance of college football and the star power of performers like Matt Leinart and a Reggie Bush, college football and television still love the Cardinal and Gold and the sky is still the limit in national fan interest.

The Not So Obvious – While national Trojan games on ABC will start at 8:00 p.m. in the East, ABC can't really say that a 5:00 p.m. kickoff in the West is really prime time. However, a 5:00 o'clock kickoff does allow the rest of the country a chance to watch football in the West. The ABC exposure should be an added boon in both West Coast rankings and recruiting in general. The next question that comes to mind is how this ABC national window effects any FSN night telecasts, which usually started around 7:15 p.m. FYI, the WeAreSC television division has contacted FSN to ascertain the answer to this matter of local interest.

The Obvious – September and October can be warm and sometimes uncomfortable months in Los Angeles.

The Not So Obvious – We enjoy the 5 o'clock starts, especially if those fall afternoon months in SoCal are in a heat funk. However, leave it to Mrs. Cheesehead, the Wisconsin alum, to remark, "Honey, won't that early evening kickoff cut into your post-game Katella Deli Bakery run?" Yikes, our favorite deli bakery in Los Alamitos closes at 9:00 p.m., and this could be a mortal blow for the purchase of our favorite large Chinese rice cookies with the humongous chocolate drop in the middle, not to mention the acquisition of a couple of chocolate éclairs. Well, we could just settle for a corned beef on a Kaiser to go. And don't tell me you like Cantors on Fairfax better.

The Obvious – Much has been written over the recent sightings of former Trojan quarterback Matt Leinart and the much-publicized Paris Hilton, causing Leinart to once again proclaim he's not a Hollywood sterotype but just a middle class kid out of Santa Ana.

The Not So Obvious – Cue the Jim Healy impression:Is it true that Leinart and Hilton were spotted this weekend down at one of Newport Beach's established watering holes?

The Obvious – Pete Arbogast is the Trojans' play-by-play announcer for college football.

The Not So Obvious – Arbo would be the first to tell you that job security in the world of radio can be hazardous to your health and bank account. When the Trojans changed from 1540 to their new radio home, ESPN Radio 710, Pontificating Pete was unceremoniously removed from the Trojans' former radio home. Now comes world that respected Notre Dame radio voice, Tony Roberts, a 26-year veteran voice of the Irish has been canned in favor of ND alum, Don Criqui. We asked Arbogast after his dismissal what he does right after this sort of stuff happens in radio, and he simply said, "I'll go down tomorrow and get in line at the unemployment office." We could never understand why the Trojan voice was only used for updates during his tenure at 1540. Seemed like a waste of an experienced SoCal sports observer, in our humble evaluation.

The Obvious – There seems to be some fuel behind the movement to bring back the home uniforms for this year's USC-UCLA game at the Rose Bowl on Dec. 2.

The Not So Obvious – Pete Carroll has brought forth some wonderful additions to the Trojan program such as the Trojan Walk, so you can't poo-poo his seemingly obsessed desire to bring back the excitement of the cardinal and gold vs the blue and gold. The fact that Carroll is openly talking about it and sources saying he has talked to UCLA coach Dorrell about the idea, means we might have a breakthrough in this missed tradition. If both teams agree and the NCAA agrees or even if there is the loss of a timeout each year by the "violator," it seems those HD television sets might just get a little more colorful on Dec. 2. Thumbs up to both coaches… if it gets done.

The Obvious – There seems to be some conjecture that Tucson's dynamic duo of linemen, offensive tackle Kris O'Dowd (6-4, 308) of Salpointe Catholic and defensive end Everson Griffen (6-4, 265) of Avondale Agua Fria, might become a package deal.

The Not So Obvious – There is no question that seeing the interaction between the two at the Scout.com combine at Citrus College a few weeks ago, the two not only enjoyed competing against each other but seemed to hit off just grand. Package deals are generally overblown when it comes to the early process of college football recruiting, but the fact both are slated for competition in June at the Trojan linemen camp on campus certainly will have an impact. It man sound a bit too provincial, but we do like the idea of Trojan coaches Nick Holt and Pat Ruel getting their opportunity to spend some on and off the field quality time.

The Obvious – Other than the Mark Sanchez court date rescheduling, there has been very little about the Trojans except for the revelation that Reggie Bush's Rose Bowl lateral was, indeed, a forward lateral, according to both Verle Sorgen, the Pac-10's coordinator of officials.

The Not So Obvious – Pete Carroll has made of point at his various tour stops of saying that Sorgen had informed him of the Bush "illegal lateral." By now, most have read that the play should have resulted in a five-yard penalty for a forward lateral intended for receiver Brad Walker. Let's make one thing quite clear, if Roadrunner Reggie hadn't attempted his now "infamous" lateral, it would all be a moot point. We would have preferred that No. 5 had executed the moot point like he executed his breathtaking fourth quarter touchdown scamper around the right side.

The Obvious – For a trading card photo, Reggie Bush will wear No. 25, so that the cards can be sold prior to the season.

The Not So Obvious – According to Bush marketing agent Mike Ornstein, early-on in the process Reggie would donate 25 percent of all the royalties he received from jersey sales toward Hurricane Katrina charities…if the NFL would allow Bush to wear No. 5, his Trojan number. However, Ornstein now says that Bush has now agreed to donate the same amount no matter what number he is given. Mama Mia, you originally try to get your client's old number at the expense of Katrina victims. Bargaining tool? Leverage? It's a joke, right?

The Obvious – One of the perks of being a WeAreSC subscribers is receiving the WeAreSC magazine.

The Not So Obvious – One of the features in the next issue is a story on the return of Nick Holt and how he returned as Pete Carroll's new defensive coordinator. Besides Pete Carroll, Holt also mentions that Michigan State head coach John L. Smith and former Pacific coach, the late Bob Cope, were also instrumental in his coaching education. Cope was also a coach for the Trojans (1991-92) during the Larry Smith era.

The Obvious – Junior Samson Szakacsy is one of two quarterbacks that has given the Trojans a verbal commitment.

The Not So Obvious – Samson, who plans to enroll at Troy in the spring and possibly major in communications, told the O/NSO recently that when he gave Pete Carroll the news that he was committing and Carroll reacted, the Carmarillo hurler said he couldn't hear anything from Carroll because a jet flew over like an explosion. A former transfer from St. Bonaventure, he is the son Doug Szakacsy, who has a "Neuroscience/medical research background at UCLA" and current Moorpark High School chemistry teacher with his own website, and mother, Nancy, who is a former teen beauty pageant winner at the local, state and national level and founder of Insight Institute, a center for psychoanalytic and behavioral growth.

The Obvious – The Shrine All-Star football game has featured many, many Trojans in its glorious history.

The Not So Obvious – This summer's classic, which will be played at Citrus College on June 24th, has only tailback C.J.Gable currently listed as a future Trojan performer. With the Trojan tailback position still thin going even with the return of Chauncey Washington, running backs like Dorsey's Stafon Johnson and Venice's Kenny Ashley may have had second thoughts about playing in the Shrine Game due to the potential of injury and Trojan opportunity.

The Obvious – Manfred Moore is a former Trojan running back (1971-73) out of San Fernando High.

The Not So Obvious – According to inside sources, Moore, who contributes greatly to the Trojan Football Alumni Club, will toss the coin for this year's Shrine All-Star football game at Citrus College.

The Obvious – Trojan fans are giddy over the announcement by Louisiana West Monroe High defensive superstar end Luther Davis, who says he is a strong lean to the Troy as of the middle of May.

The Not So Obvious – Well, if he lived in Long Beach and his mother wasn't nervous about him living so far away, we'd get excited too. However, just like Arkansas running back Broderick Green, we'll temper our enthusiasm until winter recruiting crunch time when things really heat up. However, you have to be happy with the Davis direction at this time and his examples of Dwayne Jarrett and Patrick Turner as USC out-of-state success stories.

The Obvious – The Trojans' jersey marketing push this season will center on All-America receiver Dwayne Jarrett, who wears, of course, No. 8.

The Not So Obvious – Hey, can't some linemen get some love, too? Here's a grassroots movement for No. 79 Sam Baker, the powerful All-America left tackle. While we're add it, let's thrown in jersey No. 67 for Ryan Kalil, one of the best centers in the land. Enough with all those skilled pretty boys. Did we mention that Trojan verbal quarterback, Samson Szakacsy, wears No. 8 at Camarillo? Forget it kid, better hope New Jersey Dwayne goes to the NFL before asking permission in January.

The Obvious – One of the popular new electronic items is SIRIUS broadcasting, which brings the listener everything from CNN to Trojan football.

The Not So Obvious – Many Trojan fans were went an email that read " Start enjoying live USC basketball and football broadcasts and over 125 channels of superior programming. With these special savings, you can hear every Trojan football game for less. Use this link to save $50.00." The offer was in regards to purchasing a system. Although we have heard SIRIUS and are entertained much like cable television, don't we already get Trojan broadcasts for free? Oh right, forgot about all those Trojan fans across the country that don't have access to the normal radio broadcast. Guess those fans that can't get SIRIUS will just have to make do and watch the games on national television (yuck, yuck, yuck, yuck).

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