Saturday, November 30, 2013

Best-Ever Collegiate City Rivalry

The University of Southern California (USC) Trojan football team locks horns with the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) Bruins today for the 83rd time today, the 67th to be contested in the Los Angeles Coliseum (the balance played at the Rose Bowl, UCLA's home field).

USC has won 46 of these games; UCLA 29. Seven have ended in ties.

The rivalry game, usually played at the end of the college football season, usually has implications in the Pac-12 conference, and often for the national title. At the very least, the winner has bragging rights as "owner" of Los Angeles for a whole year.

And, the winner holds onto the Victory Bell for a year. The supporting trolley is currently blue, because UCLA won last year.

The annual rivalry is not just a game in Los Angeles, it's week, Banners are up all over the place, with about a 50-50 split between USC and UCLA supporters. Even families are divided ... engaged couples ... brothers ... sisters ... it's incredible.

When I lived in Los Angeles for 10 years, I remember seeing booster signs all over the place. I remember seeing the Tommy Trojan statue sans his sword blade because UCLA pranksters had broken it off. I remember hearing stories about raids on the UCLA campus, and retaliatory raids on the USC campus.

This year, I've got one of those hard-to-find "fucla" tee-shirts that I plan to wear while watching the game from my couch. I'll have on my USC cap as well.

Fight on!

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