Posts Tagged ‘Trojans’

If stomping on opposing players’ arms or faces is part of professional ball I’ll stick to college games, thank you.

November 27, 2011

 

I went to the USC-UCLA football game last night, and saw lots of excitement and color—the tailgate feasts, the reunions—planned and unplanned—of old college pals and acquaintances, the bands playing, cheerleaders cheering, and the USC crowd exhorting star quarterback Matt Barkley to return, chanting “One more year.”

Then there was the game: exciting for a while if you were, like me, a Trojan fan, but without suspense as the Trojans won, 50-0.

It was easy to cheer for USC, harder if you were a UCLA fan, but the Bruins have had their day, and will in the future. No mixed feelings as you cheered your team on.

How different if you were a fan of the long-doormat Detroit Lions of the NFL professional football league. The Lions are 7-4, well placed to make the playoffs for the first time since 1999. Their offense is led by quarterback Matt Stafford, their defense by the ferocious Ndamukong Suh.

But it’s no fun cheering for Suh, who along with his formidable talent is one of the dirtiest players in all of football—or any other sport. Thursday in a rage, he stomped on the unprotected arm (more…)

No shame at USC for NCAA sanctions. The USC response: “There was nothing but a lot of envy. They wish they all were Trojans.”

June 11, 2010

The National Collegiate Athletic Association has imposed harsh penalties on the USC athletic program for disregarding NCAA rules and for permitting a general campus environment that made compliance efforts difficult.

USC is barred from post-season bowl games for two years, is losing ten scholarships a year for three years, is on probation for four years, and is docked 14 victories and probably the 2004 national championship, The bowl ban could be especially costly: the Rose Bowl paid its participating teams $13.5 million each last year.

USC’s sin: allowing super star Reggie Bush and his parents “impermissible benefits in the form of cash, merchandise, an automobile, housing, hotel lodging, and transportation…worth many thousands of dollars,” and allowing basketball star O. J. Mayo to collect “benefits in the form of cash, lodging, merchandise, automobile transportation, meals, airline transportation, and services.”

Pete Carroll, arguably the most successful football coach in America for the past nine years, was “absolutely shocked and disappointed” at the NCAA decision. He protested that “We didn’t know, the University didn’t know” about the Bush violations. Carroll may not have known, but Todd McNair, a USC assistant coach did. And athletic director Mike Garrett made it clear that he didn’t want to hear about the Mayo affair. (more…)

Sad time for Trojan fans. Does USC stand for Unequalled Sports Cheaters?

May 25, 2010

What a joy it was to watch USC football. The lightning-speed acrobatics of Reggie Bush. The instinctive pursuit of Brian Cushing. The hard hitting of Kevin Ellison. The exuberance of Pete Carroll. The elusiveness ­­­of Joe McKnight. So maybe the basketball program was corrupt, what with the underhanded payments to O. J. Mayo, the sneaking out of town by coach Tim Floyd, and the forfeiting of an entire season. Not good, but Trojan football! There was something to believe in.

Yes, there was the repeated taunting, showing off, and poor sportsmanship . There was the rub it in last minute touchdown pass en route to a pasting of UCLA. There was the suspicious ownership of a new car driven by Joe McKnight. But we never believed the charges of illegal payments to Reggie Bush’s parents, charges made by unsavory characters against All-American Reggie.

Now we’re rethinking the Bush situation, now that Brian Cushing, star linebacker for the Trojans before becoming the NFL defensive rookie of the year, was suspended for 2010’s first four games for using banned “performance-enhancing substances.” And now that former Trojan safety Kevin Ellison has been pulled over for speeding in a school zone, then arrested for possession of 100 Vicodin tablets. With so much wrongdoing involving Trojan footballers, why not believe Saint Reggie was corrupt too. Especially with USC’s (more…)