The only football game USC played outside of the United States was in 1985 against Oregon in the Mirage Bowl in Tokyo, Japan. USC won, 20-6.
I went to Tokyo and stayed at the team hotel. The beds were too small for most football players. Both teams dressed at the hotel for the game because the locker rooms at National Stadium were not adequate. Both teams did not even shower after the game because of the facilities.
The main reason I wrote this post is because of the post-game comments of USC linebacker Rex Moore, who was known for his crazy persona.
“At first I didn’t like the idea of two American teams coming over here and beating each other up,” Moore said. “I wanted to play a Japanese team. But this was a good experience.”
While workers busily swept up the chalk on the football field, Moore said: “The people are the greatest thing about this place. Everybody’s doing something. I saw a bum today and even he was sweeping around his place.”
Moore’s son, Clyde, is a linebacker on the current USC team. His son, Grant, also played at USC.
A couple other things I remember was even in Tokyo there was a USC graduate who had a jewelry store and gave a discount to any USC fans.
There was also all kinds of different souvenirs given to us by the Japanese hosts . . . and even the Oregon cheerleaders.
UPDATED: The fans didn’t care who was winning (why would they). So one half of the stadium was given cardinal and gold pom-poms and half was given green and yellow pom-poms. They were more excited by the pre-game and halftime shows. Music blared through the stadium even during plays.
Game highlights below.