I hear there is a photo floating around of the football imposter using a jacuzzi at the McKay Center.
“He’s pretty young looking and could pass as a college student,” said a member of USC campus security, who did not wish to be identified. “He is about 5-10 but I heard he wore No. 87 at practice. The guy who really wears 87 is 6-4, so that was a giveaway.”
With all the times USC special teams has had 10 men on the field this season, maybe the imposter should be on the punt return team this season.
Petros Papadakis has been all over the story this week on his show.https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js
- Here is what USC defensive line coach Vic So’oto said Thursday about the Trojans’ offensive line: “There’s a lot of the same guys, but it’s very competitive. I think they’re gonna take a jump.”
This doesn’t sound to me like the offensive line is going to be much better.
- I hear the seven suspended USC baseball players should finally be back this weekend. We’ll see.
- Linebacker Solomon Tuliaupupu is still recovering from a knee injury and not participating in spring practice. Tuliaupupu has missed the past three seasons with foot/knee injuries.
- Has UCLA announced it is building a statue of Mick Cronin yet? I’m only half-joking based on the reaction to making the Final Four.
And now for some history:
- Don Buford was a talented tailback/outfielder at USC in the 1950’s. In 1958, he was named to the Notre Dame all-opponent team. It was a nice honor. The other tailback, Pete Dawkins of Army, won the Heisman Trophy that year. Another member of the team was Pitt tight end Mike Ditka.
- Last week, I wrote about Linda Ronstadt performing at Cromwell Field before 2,000 fans in 1974. The show lost at least $8,000 because a crowd of 4,000 was expected by USC promoters. By 1977, Ronstadt sold out the Universal Amphitheatre for a week.
- “I didn’t want it anyways. — Paul Hackett, 12/13/76”
The above was scrawled by an unknown USC assistant on the chalkboard of Hackett’s office after the then-USC quarterbacks coach interviewed for the Stanford job in 1976 but did not get it. Stanford hired Bill Walsh instead.
Hackett was only 29 at the time but the prank note indicates his already healthy ego was apparent to others even then.
“At first they actively pursued me (at Stanford), but I wasn’t interested,” Hackett said. “Then I was assured that everything would be very positive, so I pursued it. My age and experience were against me, but I flew up there and was interviewed. I’m young by head coach standards, though. Right now I’m happy where I am and that we’re going to the Rose Bowl. Walsh is a helluva coach and he used to be an assistant at Stanford.”
- Did you know former Notre Dame coach Ara Parseghian provided the inspiration for the Cardinal and Gold booster club?
Nick Pappas, the former USC player/assistant coach and the grandfather of USC booster clubs, had dinner in 1955 with Parseghian, Oklahoma assistant Gomer Jones and Nebraska coach Bill Glassford.
“Ara told me about a Quarterback Club he started at Northwestern,” Pappas said. “Northwestern is a private university. I never knew that. Anyway, Ara started this club to make ends meet. They charged $125 a year for memberships and gave members preferenced seating and a banquet, things like that.
“It seems the club was doing so well, they had to keep people out of it. Ara told me they weren’t about to get rid of him after that.”
- Up until 1958, most USC athletic scholarships were funded by George Allan Hancock, who donated $7 million to the university and still has a building named after him on campus. Hancock Park is also named after him.
“When he left in 1958, (he founded Hancock College) Norman Topping, the president, told me I better get started on something,” Pappas said.
- In 1960, Pappas started Cardinal and Gold. By 1974, Pappas had 850 members of Cardinal and Gold paying $500 a year and 2,500 in the Trojan Club.
“I know when a guy donates five bucks, he will give again,” Pappas said. “So I treat him with as much respect as anyone else. We think keeping things on a first name basis is the primary thing.”
- Somewhere along the way USC has lost that friendly Pappas touch when dealing with fans/boosters and now has a CEO environment that makes fans feel like numbers.
If you are signed up for my USC newsletter, there will be a Friday Notes Column supplement this afternoon.