If It’s Friday, It’s Time For A USC Notes Column

This week’s column highlight involves Vin Scully and legendary USC baseballl coach Rod Dedeaux.

  • USC will practice today at 7 a.m. All practices will be closed to the public. College football is different than the NFL, which allows fans at training camp.
  • Wide receiver Jordan Addison on asking Carson Palmer to wear No. 3.

“I don’t really want to get into too much detail with it but I’m just gonna make sure he knows he put the number on the right person,” Addision said.

I’m sure the details are not great. Palmer didn’t have much choice and it’s not a great look for a one-year player to get a Heisman winner’s number.

  • Addison on his transfer saga that drew the ire of Pitt coach Pat Narduzzi.

“I got drug through the mud a little bit with the media,” he said. “But I like being an underdog and I’m always going to come out on top.”

  • Wide receiver Mario Williams said he intends to play baseball next season at USC. We’ll see how Lincoln Riley deals with it, especially during spring practice.
  • The Citadel in Commerce has a sand sculpture that celebrates the local sports teams. Here’s the USC portion.

And now for some history:

  • After the Dodgers announced their move to Los Angeles, Dodgers owner Walter O’Malley was in a quandary over who to hire as the play-by-play announcer.

There was a movement to hire a local big-name like Bob Kelley, who was the Rams announcer from 1937-65 and the Los Angeles Angels from 1948-57. He also had a nightly radio show (his son became a radio DJ known as Paraquat Kelley on KMET).

O’Malley invited USC baseball coach Rod Dedeaux to his office to listen to a tape he prepared of Vin Scully’s broadcast and wanted Dedeaux’s opinion.

After a few minutes, Dedeaux told O’Malley that Scully was the best announcer he ever heard and urged him to convince Scully to move west with the team to Los Angeles.

O’Malley probably had already made up his mind regarding Scully but sought Dedeaux’s opinion to validate his decision. It also led to a long friendship between Scully and Dedeaux.

  • Scully attended Dedeaux’s 90th birthday celebration in 2004 at USC before a Trojans’ game (pictured below).

He also delivered the eulogy at Dedeaux’s funeral.

“As long as there is baseball and as long as there is USC,” Scully said, “Rod will live forever.”

  • Here’s Scully at the Coliseum for the 2008 game between the Dodgers and Red Sox.
  • Scully, broadcaster Red Barber and O’Malley at a St. Patrick’s Day party in 1952.
  • Scully interviews pitcher Ron Perranoski after the Dodgers’ four-game sweep of the Yankees in the 1963 World Series. On the left is Dodgers executive Fresco Thompson.
  • Look at the radio stations Scully was heard on in Los Angeles:  KMPC, 1958; KFI, 1959-72; KABC, 1972-97; KXTA, 1997-2003; KFWB, 2003-07; KABC, 2007-11; KLAC, 2011-17.
  • On April 18, 1958, the Dodgers rode in a motorcade parade down Broadway en route to their first game in Los Angeles, a 6-5 win over the San Francisco Giants before 78,672 fans at the Coliseum.

A parade before the game. Amazing!

  • Before it moves to the Big Ten, USC’s already played in Dyche Stadium (now called Ryan Field) at Northwestern. The Trojans went in 1968 and won 24-7. O.J. Simpson rushed for 189 yards and scored three TDs.
Defensive back Mike Battle (17) and linebacker Jim Snow (55) try to recover fumble. No. 46 is rover Gerry Shaw.
  • USC’s homecoming was so big that in 1947, singer Jo Stafford performed her NBC radio show live from the Shrine Auditorium as part of the festivities. Prior to the show, Stafford was named top female artist played on juke boxes by the trade publication Coinbox. By 1953, she signed a four-year $1 million deal with CBS-TV and by 1954 became the second artist behind Bing Crosby to sell 25 million records.
  • Maybe Stafford performed for USC because she spent part of her childhood growing up in Long Beach and attended Long Beach Poly High School. Her first radio appearance was on KHJ-AM at the age of 16.
Tommy Dorsey, Frank Sinatra and Jo Stafford.
  • If these artists from the past don’t convince you how big USC homecoming was, let’s recall that in 1949 Kirk Douglas came to Bovard Auditorium to head the jury that selected Helen of Troy, the homecoming queen.

Comedian Bob Hope also showed up for the ceremony and then performed a show at Bovard on Friday night that featured singer/actress Doris Day. A parade in downtown L.A. drew 65,000 and was televised locally.

Kirk Douglas crowns Virginia Tongue as Helen of Troy in 1949.
  • With USC moving to the Big Ten, I want to re-up this: The Trojans had pretty good hockey teams in the 1930’s with players from Canada, Massachusetts and Minnesota. The games were held at the Hollywood Polar Palace, which seated 3,500.

USC filled up the Polar Palace on March 24, 1938 when the Trojans hosted defending Big Ten champions, Minnesota.

USC took a 2-0 lead in the first period and defeated the Golden Gophers, 5-2, as Nat Harty scored two goals for the Trojans. Minnesota sophomore John Mariucci was held scoreless for the first time in his college career.

Nat Harty captained the Southern California Trojans in 1938
  • The Hollywood Polar Palace on Melrose and Van Ness avenues, burned down in 1963.
  • Let’s appreciate another icon who died this week: NBA legend Bill Russell.

Russell played at McClymonds High School in Oakland. Does that make him the best player from California?

  • I wasn’t old enough to see Russell play live but I remember as a child being a fan of his sportstalk radio show on 790-AM.
  • If you want confirmation of what a joke KABC, the USC flagship station, has become these days with almost no local programming, when Russell worked there the director of sports was Keith Jackson. Times have sure changed.
  • When Russell coached the Seattle SuperSonics, he also had a column in the Seattle Times. This question and answer are well worth reading.

86 thoughts on “If It’s Friday, It’s Time For A USC Notes Column




        GAG ME WITHA SPOON !!!!!

        Liked by 3 people






        Liked by 1 person

      3. I think you mean Gavin is a leader of men/women/gender neutral/species neutral/he/she/they/it/them/asses twisted into pretzels.

        Liked by 1 person

  1. Galen is designed for ice use – too bad when bel-air tech chose to modernize Pauley they didn’t include an ice rink under the hardwood.

    Interesting photo of Scully, Red Barber and Walter O’Malley – in 6+ months Barber and the Dodgers would part ways yeah you guessed it – O’Malley’s frugality just a portent of what Drysdale and Koufax would encounter 13 years later…..Barber wanted a bigger fee to broadcast the 1953 World Series = O’Malley refused and ‘Red’ moved onto the NYY where he worked until the end of the 1966 season.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. The wife & I attended Cuellar vs Mares in December 2016 at the Galen Center. It was the second boxing match they had there, Chris Arreola vs Bermane Stiverne being the first in May 2014.

      Had hoped that would be the first of many events we’d attend there. But they really haven’t had any. (Last was a concert in June 2017.)

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Kirk could do it all. [But seriously –watch the guy throw an axe, sing a song, box, wrestle, ride a horse, swing a sword, dance on Viking ship oars —he was fricking unbelievable —- and probably displayed many of his talents to one or two Helens of Troy]….


  2. It will be interesting to see if USC changes which sports it competes in when going into the B1G. I would hate to lose womens beach volleyball, they have the best uniforms in sports.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. July 2, 2022: USC and UCLA men’s volleyball and water polo programs will continue in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation, and the beach volleyball teams will remain in the Pac-12 because the Big Ten doesn’t sponsor those sports.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Rod Dedeaux had a great relationship with John Mckay also. One of the secrets to his success especially early on was Mckay allowed many of his football players the opportunity to also play baseball such as:

    Mike Garrett
    Anthony Davis
    Willie Brown
    Fred Lynn
    Rob Hertel
    Rob Adolph
    Marvin Cobb
    Ron Drake
    Steve Sogge
    Gary Cobb
    Jack Del Rio
    Rodney Peete
    and many more

    Lincoln Riley would be wise to let Mario Williams play both sports missing spring practice is not that big of a deal, and many of the players were starters during the football season with very little drop off on production during the football season after playing baseball. Some even participated in spring football practice despite playing baseball full time in the spring

    Many of our top football players also ran track in the off season, and that should also continue. Earl Mcullough, and OJ were a tremendous in track as was Edesel Garrison, Sultan Mcullough, Kevin Williams, and even Quincy Watts our current track coach.

    Liked by 6 people

    1. tommyd,
      As a player it is great to get away from one sport for awhile and change things up and play another. Missing spring ball will be nothing. They can get caught up in summer workouts. it makes the players happy being able to change it around. I hope Riley allows this. Some of those guys were All American in football and baseball. That is talent. BTW, Anthony Davis is a 5 Time National Champion, two football and three in in baseball. Not bad.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Elite athletes [Anthony Davis] and even slightly less than elite athletes [Steve Sogge] benefit from playing more than a single sport. The chickenshit Helton approach [“I frown on my skill players risking injury participating in other sports…or even participating in contact drills in football”] needs to go.

        Liked by 3 people

  4. Let’s also not forget former USC running back Don Buford who became a star for the Baltimore Orioles on those great teams with Frank and Brooks Robinson. Don, was a key element in some of USC’s great baseball teams in the early Rod Dedeaux coaching era.

    USC football players also played rugby in the off season, and some of them were starters.

    Let the kids play ball while they are at SC. Many during the Helton and Carroll era were not allowed to do that.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. tommyd,

      I totally agree. Jon Jon Vaughns, the younger brother of Tyler Vaughns who played wide receiver at SC and is now with the Steelers wanted to play baseball and football at SC. He was set to come, however, that STUPID COACH helton did not want to allow that. No, Jon Jon is at ugly and starts in right field is doing well.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Helton never forgave Kenan Christon for wanting to run track —and took it out on him [in his usual chickenshit way] by reducing his playing time to roughly zero.

        Liked by 2 people

  5. #Pardonmywonk

    The USC–Hollywood connection has been alive and well for almost 100 years and a huge part of the school heritage, success, draw, and financial success. Scott brings this out each and every Friday. It’s in our DNA……!

    ….Until the NCAA came in and destroyed one of our greatest assets!
    They (the NCAA) never emasculated the culture of the SEC schools when those schools violated terms. Same with the Texas and Big 8-12 schools.
    Penn State? Nope.

    Apparently, having Snoop on the sidelines was part of “lack of institutional control” and we could no longer have multi-millionaires and Hollywood stars on our sidelines at the Coliseum. Scott brings it each and every Friday, and understands that this is part of Trojan Heritage. “F” the NCAA and bring the stars back!

    Liked by 3 people

      1. Well, Gabby….if we had somebody spying on them 2 days ago for her 82nd birthday party we’d know….

        Liked by 1 person

      2. 82!!!….. Wow!…I did realize she was that old. I would call it 82-years-young. From my perception, looks like she’s taken well care of herself.

        Liked by 1 person

  6. In its heyday, USC radio was on KFI. The only station on the west coast authorized to broadcast at 50,000 watts all day. Many A.M. Radio stations broadcast at 50k watts during the day, but have to drop their signal after sundown. USC moved to KNX, and was good there, but KNX is all news and wanted to keep their traffic reports every 15 minutes so they dropped sports. USC also broadcast games on the “mighty 690” with broadcast equipment located in Tijuana at about 70k watts (not controlled by the FCC )
    The current USC radio station probably broadcasts at about 40k watts during the day but drops to 5 watts at night. (Old CB radio equipment was capped at this level) There is a repeater station in Ontario about 20 miles from Rialto which isn’t strong enough to reach Rialto. Sirius XM radio is the only hope for most people living more than 30 miles from USC.
    Scott’s newspaper has an article about Jordan Addison this morning. In it he addressed allegations of tampering. The story mentioned that most of the offensive coaches left Pitt before Addison considered transferring. I hadn’t heard this because it probably doesn’t fit the narrative of tampering.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Everybody’s picking Pitt to be #1 (or tied for #1) in the coastal division of the ACC. I bet they underperform —not hugely but enough not to be up there with Miami.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Pete Thamel: Big 12 Executive Associate Commissioner Ed Stewart is leaving for a high-ranking role in the athletic department at USC. Stewart is being hired as an executive senior associate athletic director at USC who’ll oversee football.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Charles,
      I’d be happier if that last sentence read “Stewart is being hired to sit on Carol Folt & initiate Big Money collectives at USC…”

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Colonel Kurtz from “Apocalypse Now”:
        “I dreamt of a snail balancing on a razor —it is my dream, it is my nightmare.”


  8. Scooter,

    Awesome job today. So much history in it. So many things to comment on. One thing though I will, SC needs a better radio station. KABC SUCKS JUST AS BAD AS UGLY. The radio station that SC was on during the Pete Carroll era was awesome. You had about three hours before the game, the game and another three hours after the game. SC needs to get on a bigger radio station like KFI or 710. SC can now afford a better station. That would be hilarious if SC went to KFI. You have ugly on 570 AM which is a sister station to KFI and ugly somtimes has to go to 1150 AM because of the Clippers. However, If SC got KFI, then they would not have to switch around just like ugly does. Besides the two stations are next to each other on the dial. You could go back and forth listening to the both of them.

    Liked by 3 people

      1. Long screed here but the mention of Sturgis kicked out a wonderful trip many years ago

        Forty one years ago this month (August 1981) after working for 2 years in NYC I decided to return to LA. Set out early August – went through Scranton, upstate NY (spectacularly beautiful country) on through Buffalo Niagara Falls is truly beautiful but only from the Canadian side then nighty night in Hamilton-ON. Day 2 went due west through Windsor thru Detroit north to Saginaw (the Simon and Garfunkle reference drew me) then straight across to Lundington-MI. Caught a Chessie Line car ferry took me to Kewaunee-WI and spent the night in Green Bay. Day 3 drove by Lambeau Field then across WI thru Eau Claire (again so beautiful) and on into MN. Happened by old Bloomington Stadium that the cranes were demolishing and then on up to St. Clod. Day 4 stayed NW up to Fargo-ND then onto Bismarck (real hot dry day) then turned south old back country roads into SD (SD is prettier but ND had better roads), to Murdo for the night. Day 5 due west on US 83….suddenly there were motorcycles as I kept driving west the number of them kept increasing. About 6 miles east of Rapid City there was a break in the forest and then I saw Mt. Rushmore. Even as cynical as I can be I was stunned looking at it from afar. The bikers kept going further west to Sturgis and I hit Wind Cave and then lost my water pump as I coasted 8 miles downhill into Newcastle-WY. Day 6 layover with an evening out of that roller skating scene in ‘Heavens Gate’ picnic tables for dining inside and dancing all over. Day 7 due west on I-90 through Sheridan and across into MT. Just before I-90 hits US 212 – Little Big Horn. As I listened inattentively to the docent’s presentation I looked across a near treeless plain of rolling fields and thick cover about 18 in in height. There was a small copse of trees but that was dit and all I could think was ‘….what a truly lonely place to die..’ on to Billings. Day 8 westward ho this time all the way up to Butte steep ascent on to where the huge smelter stack still stands nearly 600 ft in height. Scampered back down to Dillon for the night. Day 9 left south on I-15 detour through Idaho Falls-ID and then another highlight – Promontory Point. They had two full scale replicas of the two steam locomotives at the Golden Spike Monument. Bad road leading in but the hall was magnificent back then, night in SLC. Day 10 on to Vegas and home.

        If you are able drive the states – I’ve done it six times – have seen all but AK, HI, AR and TN. If you have little ones you owe them to see the states to appreciate other places as well as their own hometown. To see the sun rise on the Painted Desert…the Shenandoah Valley at daybreak, driving from Selma to Montgomery, watching magnificent thunderstorms grow suddenly crossing the great plains, going back in time as you drive due east in Eastern KY approaching WV the beauty of that forest, crossing the Mississippi well I’ve bored all of you enough…..

        Liked by 3 people

      2. Not boring at all. I’ve dreamt of buying a van conversion (or smaller RV) and driving the states. But the wife isn’t having it.

        We’ve done the Laughlin River Run, but not Sturgis. Had a blast, but rides to Paso Robles and Temecula are enough for her these days. Neither of my current bikes are as comfortable for her as my old one was. She also rides her own, but not on overnighters.

        Liked by 2 people

      3. Gabby –speaking of covid, do you think we’ll ever have the joy of seeing President Biden again..?


      4. It’s probably a good thing that Biden has been perceived as a figurehead, while the brain trust makes the key decisions. That’s beneficial to ALL Americans, but it hurts you, anti-biden soldiers, to swallow



      5. Hiding in his basement got him elected. Most of his own party admits only a year and a half later what a disaster he’s been and does not want him back in 2024. He’s not man enough to admit what we all know….that he will not run again.

        Why should he show himself?

        Liked by 1 person

      6. Listen up, mental midget!…. Trump was such a disaster, Biden stayed safe in his basement and still slapped trump around at the ballot box. Thank you for mentioning how bad trumps loss truly was. It’s about time you woke up!

        You don’t add 530k new jobs in JULY, along with the lowest unemployment rate (3.5%) in 20 years, and try to sell “we are in a recession” Get educated little man, I can’t do it for you.


      7. Here’s the fucking reality you choose to ignore. You have the Haves and Have -nots(like yourself). The Haves don’t like paying the covid surcharge but are doing it because of their financial stability. On the other side are the Have -nots, like yourself, who have little to no discretionary income and bitch 24/7 because the price of ass-wipe went up a dollar.

        This is the peaking-order reality of the world and will never change. No matter, who’s in the WH your fate will never change.

        Go wipe the drool and start acting like a patriot of our country and quit wishing for Biden’s demise, it hurts ALL Americans


      8. Gabby —
        I probably tried 300 jury trials in my time —most of them against pretty savvy public defenders — I’m used to listening to someone make plausible counter arguments… to the truth….

        Liked by 1 person

      9. Speaking of 300 jury trials

        MG: “For a prosecutor to be involved in a case in which the defense attorney has this feeling of righteousness. That’s supposed to be mine. That’s supposed to be my territory. And so it was upsetting to see him so sure of himself, and so sure of the merits of his case. And I could start reading the jurors. I pride myself on being able to see what’s on the jurors’ minds, really almost within 10 seconds of their starting to answer questions. And I didn’t like what I was seeing. I was seeing a lot of various degrees of hatred for me registering on faces. So I started getting the feeling that this was not a great case very early on in the trial.

        Phil Schnayerson convinced 7 out of 12 jurors that his client was innocent. It’s my understanding, I may be wrong, but this trial led to a change in your philosophy of who the real bad guys were.

        Liked by 1 person

      10. With that said, Perhaps my arguments might get you to re-evaluate your ideology regarding the political landscape of this country.

        It’s a very interesting story between you and Jello, especially the call years later. I’m actually proud of you. Change happens for the better.

        Liked by 1 person

      11. Very funny, Gabby.
        Lesson: Prosecutors should never go on National Public Radio.
        [I believe this was the show where they said I was one of the few people who outlived the reputation of being a sheepfucker —- sweet!]…..

        Liked by 1 person

      12. Off the top of my head, I think the dialog was- a lion and a sheep can’t live together, but if the lion becomes a sheep they can coexist.

        Liked by 1 person

      13. You are the biggest bundle of contradictions, Gabby — you can be so cutting and vitriolic …and, then, you go say something so Gandhi-esque … hard combination to criticize…

        Liked by 1 person

  9. Hey, wolf!!!! Thanks for the massive gumball, lots to digest. Like PT said, can we get more info focused on the football team? Practice dates and times would be a start….thanks!

    Liked by 2 people

  10. New punter commit from the Aussie prokick organization. The young fella announced it on twitter, but I can’t tell what his name is from his twitter handle, aadynsleepdalton.

    He and Ed G. should be tight mates.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. My prediction is the offensive and defensive lines will be adequate this year unless we get hit with the injury bug because depth will be a problem. Unless recruiting improves the offensive and defensive lines will be a huge weakness beyond this year.

    There has definitely been a lack of focus again this year on special teams which is a key element to winning football games especially the close games. USC will have some very close games in the Pac 12 this year, and my concern is Lincoln Riley thinks they will out score everyone so the kicking game won’t be an issue in his first season. This might be the case against the weaker opponents, but you need strong special teams to win the big games. History shows USC even when USC was dominant it was a key kickoff return, or punt return which broke the opponents back in close games.

    When is the last time USC had a kickoff or punt return that went all the way for a touchdown, or a field goal like the USC -Penn State Rose Bowl in recent years that won the Rose Bowl?

    Lincoln Riley, needs to hire a special teams coach, and go out and get a JC Punter NOW because this could cost him some games this season especially on the road at Utah, Oregon State, and UCLA.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The UCLA game has been cancelled, tommyd…UCLA can’t find a venue in which to play….seems stadiums are asking for rent in advance…


  12. Future star in the making- Freshman Running Back Raleek Brown from Mater Dei High School.

    Raleek Brown- will be a great one. Reminds me of former USC running back Ricky Ervins from Pasadena Muir High School, but will be even better with time. Raleek, has more speed than Ricky , and can really catch the ball out of the backfield. Could be our kickoff return specialist early in the season along with Rice.

    Liked by 2 people

  13. I like Scott Wolf’s stories re USC-Vin Scully tie-in. Current administration and the “fan boys” know nothing of USC history.


      1. Nary a bad word about Clay Helton 2018-2021 from 247, now on3, rivals, et al. Don’t be obtuse.


      2. Funny how many members of these other sites (not all) are more interested in protecting their standing in the alumni network and not pissing anybody off than speaking truth … ie criticizing Helton, Bohn, and Folt.

        Liked by 1 person

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