It started and ended the same way on Saturday. We got the Paul McDonald swim stadiium just before game time to see the top ranked Trojans and #2 Cal face off in water polo. SC looked off in the first half, even through the third period, but outscored the Bears 5-1 in the 4th, rolled to a 10-9 win, their 42nd in a row, giving them the number one seed in the MPSF tournament next week at Irvine, and keeping them very much in line for a berth in the National Championship game.
Then we went over to the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum just before game time to see the #3 ranked Trojans and #15 Cal face off in football. SC looked off in the first half, even through the third period, but outscored the Bears 14-0 in the 4th, rolled to a 23-9 win, their 32nd in a row at home, giving them the Pac-10 championship and the number one seed in the Rose Bowl, in Pasadena in January, and keeping them very much in line for a berth in the National Championship game.
I got a sore throat during the night Friday night, and it bothered me a little more and a little more throughout the day, but when it came time to do the game, that's just tough luck, and you just do it.
Before the game we got to spend time with one of the finest gentlemen in sports broadcasting, and my long time partner on USC football broadcasts, Fred Gallagher. He, Paul, Ned Miller, Mark Helmer and I spent a good twenty minutes spinning yarns and enjoying each other's company.
Years ago, a local writer wrote some pretty awful things about Fred, and then called me a week later to ask if I would help him with an interview to fill up his column on how I (and UCLA's Chris Roberts) went about preparing for the big game. He had already interviewed Chris, and now wanted to talk to me, but I told him I was in no way interested in helping him after the yellow-journalistic hatchet job he done to this fine man and outstanding professional broadcaster. The writer seemed taken aback by my strong dedication to my partner and friend. He apparently continues to be hurt by this perceived "snub" on my part. This writer has never spoken to me again. I am still waiting for an apology from him to Fred.
A usual, Paul and I played just about the way the team did. Sort of fits and starts, bumbling our way along early, and then hitting our stride just as the 49 yard field goal by David BEELER went through. (I wish it were like BYOO-LER—lots more fun with that name cuz of the movie). From that point we were, like the team, we were pretty much on. A great play call on that 4th and 1, and it's on to Pasadena, or beyond!
Michigan has hung on to the 2 BCS spot for now, but if SC beats ND and UCLA, they ought to be able to pick up enough points to pass ‘em and go to the BCS mythical NC game. Hey, if not, SC-somebody n the Rose Bowl, and we win the AP title again, national champs either way!!
That's AFTER the domers and bruins.
So hanging around the house trying to get well, and watched a pretty cool retrospective on Ch. 7 about SC-ND series. My daughters spent the night here in Venice, we're going to see a movie with KC later on. It's great to be a Trojan! Fight On!
Friday, November 17th
Saw the movie "Bobby" tonight at the Cinerama dome/arc light with Jenny (not to mention Geena Davis was with us in the crowd, very cool) Dredged up a ton of memories from the era. I was in junior high and worked as a volunteer canvasser for McCarthy, but was ready, of course to back Bobby if he was the candidate, which he would have been. And he would have won. Imagine how different things might be today if that had happened. Try to imagine it without injecting right or left wing political rhetoric, just purely from a humanistic standpoint.
At any rate, I was way more interested in Drysdale that night, but since I had not seen the first two shutouts, I couldn't bring myself to go any of the others, so I listened to all but one of the games on the radio with Stephanie Truitt. That night we cheered, and we watched the election returns with marginal interest comparatively.
I went home and went to sleep, but did manage to wake up at midnight and flick on the radio to see who had won the primary. Of course, I heard the reporting of the tragic shooting. It was a very disturbing time in America, with the social changes, the assassinations of some great men by narrow minded others, and a time of not only great upheaval, but a time of strengthening the resolve of many of my generation towards sacrifice in serving the public good, and fighting for the best ways to take care of our fellow men, not only locally, but all across our nation and all across the world.
So many people came together at that time, and even if we have branched out in our lives, we carry the torch that Bobby, and others like him, lit for us all. It was a very tough movie to watch, and a tough time to recall. Hopefully there will be another who will lead the people as a man of the people, a humanist with great oratorical skill who appeals to all, who reaches across economic, ethnic, and all social and religious boundaries to unite us into believing that we can be great, as we work for the common good.
On to the stadium. Fight On!