Here is a big win from 20 years ago that gets obscured today because of the Pete Carroll era.
In 2000, USC played UCLA at the Rose Bowl. Any win over UCLA would be big at that time. USC had lost eight straight to the Bruins before finally snapping the streak in 1999.
So the 2000 Crosstown Rivalry was interesting to see if USC could win again or go back to losing vs. UCLA?
USC led, 35-28, on a 57-yard TD pass from Carson Palmer to Steve Stevenson with 3:58 left. But UCLA tied the game at 35 on a 1-yard run by Cory Paus.
With nine seconds left, backup kicker David Bell barely made a 36-yard FG to win the game. It was Bell’s first made field goal of the season. He had missed one earlier in the game and USC coach Paul Hackett told injured starter John Wall to warm up.
“I asked (Bell) after the first missed field goal if we should put the freshman in,” Hackett said. “He told me he wanted to kick the field goal and win it for us.”
That’s Bell getting mobbed by teammates in the picture.
A side note: Palmer had perhaps his best pre-Carroll era game at USC: 26- of-37, 350 yards and a career-high four touchdown passes.
It was just the fifth win of the season for the Trojans and Hackett was fired 10 days later. But Bell was always a hero after that moment.