It’s time for another Friday night football game at USC.
I’m not usually a fan of the weeknight games at the Coliseum. But since the Trojans are playing Colorado, I’m not against it.
You get the game over with tonight and can spend tomorrow watching all the other games without getting distracted by the Buffaloes.
- Colorado interim coach Mike Sanford Jr. (right) grew up around the USC football program as his father was an assistant from 1989-96. Here he is with his father, Mike Sanford and wide receiver Keyshawn Johnson.
- The Chargers released 2019 first-round pick Jerry Tillery on Thursday. USC fans will always remember Tillery for the incidents below.
RESTAURANT OF THE WEEK
Margarita Jones, 3760 S Figueroa St., Los Angeles
It was across the street from the better known Julie’s but Margarita Jones could be lively especially on Thursday nights. It’s now the site of student apartments, Chipotle and Chick-fil-A.
- And now for some history:
- USC quarterback Craig Fertig celebrates after the Trojans returned to Los Angeles following a 40-14 rout of No. 2-ranked Oklahoma in Norman, Okla., in 1964. Fertig was 16 of 28 for 212 yards vs. the Sooners. USC entered the game unranked but shot up to No. 2 following the victory.
- Al Davis was ahead of his time as a recruiter too. Look how he got his picture in the paper for a USC recruiting story in 1959.
Davis brought several players to USC from Pennsylvania like tailback Angelo Coia and All-American defensive lineman Dan Ficca during an era when it was unusual for the Trojans to recruit players from the East.
When Davis was a USC assistant, he hired the diminuitive Al LoCasale to be a personal assistant to USC head coach Don Clark. But co-workers said LoCosale just followed Davis around all day. He followed Davis to the American Football League too and spent more than 30 years working with Davis.
One person Davis did not get along with was John McKay. They were both assistants to Clark in 1959 and when McKay got the USC job over Davis in 1959, Davis quickly departed to become an assistant for the Los Angeles Chargers.
- The other person in the newspaper photo above is former USC player, coach and booster Nick Pappas. 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.”
- Here’s the 1989 Rose Bowl, as linebacker Michael “Tex” Williams and cornerback Ernest Spears pursue fullback Leroy Hoard. Also pictured is nose guard Don Gibson.
- Mike Salmon (24) and Donn Cunigan (37) chase QB Paul Failla in the 1993 USC-Notre Dame game.
It doesn’t get much better than this crystal clear photo of USC tailback Ricky Bell in 1976. Bell rushed for 176 yards despite plaing with a sprained ankle.
- Below is Bell on the cover of the 1976 Street and Smith’s Official Yearbook.
- In 1993, Art Brewster illustrated the cover of the USC football media guide.
- The Coliseum used to have the classic H-shaped goal posts. USC students decorated them before every home games.
- Nothing to see here. Just USC president Norman Topping sitting on the bench next to Rod Sherman (12) and the rest of the football team in 1964. Imagine if Carol Folt did that?
- Did you know in 1959 that USC moved the football field at the Coliseum 20 yards west, or closer to the closed end of the stadium.
The move was intended to give a better view of the game to “30,000 seats” according to USC president Norman Topping.
- It’s not every day the Sports Arena had a large crowd for a baskeball game like in 1964.
- USC has a long history of Sports Illustrated covers but one that doesn’t get a lot of mention is this 1959 cover of Trojan tennis player Alex Olmedo, who won Wimbledon and the Australian Open.
Here is Olmedo holding the Davis Cup Trophy in 1959. Although he was from Peru and not a citizen of the United States, Olmedo competed for the United States because he lived here for three years and Peru did not compete in the Davis Cup. Olmedo eventually became a U.S. citizen.
- Bruce Rollinson announced Thursday night he is retiring after 34 years at Mater Dei High School.
Here is his graduation photo from USC.
- This picture below explains itself perfectly.