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IMHO Sunday: The Super Men

In my humble opinion, cardinal and gold thoughts on what I see, what I hear, and what I think.

It’s Super Sunday: This afternoon, its Super Bowl Lll (3:30 p.m. PT/NBC), and if you’re a USC fan, do you root for New England or Philadelphia? Well, by now you’re aware that former Trojans’ wide receiver standout Nelson Agholor (photo above No. 15) will start for the Eagles against the Patriots. If you’re still riding the fence, deciding a rooting interest, Nelson could be your difference-maker. There, now you have somebody for whom to root.

Swannie: The first Trojan to be named a Super Bowl MVP was 1976 when former Pittsburgh wide receiver and current USC athletic director Lynn Swann was named MVP in Super Bowl X.

Swannie – Part 2: Here are Lynn Swann’s recollections and highlights of his Super Bowl MVP performance: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YsJ-P7SQq14

The middle man: The second Trojan to win a Super Bowl MVP was Raiders’ running back and former USC Heisman Trophy winner Marcus Allen, who was named the 1984 MVP in Super Bowl XVlll.

The middle man – Part 2: Here are Marcus Allen’s recollections and highlights of his Super Bowl XVlll MVP performance: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oFBk2I9Cpiw

The last man up: The last USC Trojan to be named a Super Bowl MVP was 2014 when former Seattle Seahawks and Trojan linebacker Malcom Smith was named the MVP of Super Bowl XLVlll.

The last man up Part 2: Here are Malcom Smith’s highlights of his Super Bowl MVP performance: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gJcPMq2QUNg

Numbers: For the record, in the long history of the Super Bowl, only five times has there been no USC Trojan on a Super Bowl roster (1999, 2007,2012, 2013, 2016).

A first: The first Trojans to be part of a Super Bowl was Super Bowl 1. Trojans represented were DB Willie Wood (Green Bay), TB Mike Garrett (Kansas City), and QB Pete Beathard (Kansas City).

Super guru: Former WeAreSC columnist and USC Athletic Hall of Famer Steve Bisheff has quite an illustrious record of predicting Super Bowl winners. At one point, Bish correctly predicted 19 straight winners and had an overall record of 31-5.

Super guru – Part 2: For the record, Bisheff told me he normally picks the team with the best defense, but in New England quarterback Tom Brady and head coach Bill Belichick, they may be the best of this or any era. Translation: New England.

The confessional: I must confess that I did something I normally don’t do. I was at the Las Vegas Wynn last weekend and plucked down $20 on Philadelphia, taking the Eagles and the 4.5 points. If Philly wins, I was told I’ll win a whopping $18!

From the press box…

Recruiting TV reminder: ESPN will be live Wednesday morning for three potential USC recruit signings. Making their national announcement to sign will be linebacker Solomon Tuliaupupu (Santa Ana, Calif./Mater Dei/9 a.m.), corner Olaijah Griffin (Mission Viejo, Calif./Mission Viejo/10 a.m.), and wide receiver Devon Williams (Lancaster, Calif./Antelope Valley/ 11 a.m.). All times are Pacific.

Progress report: As a continuing public service, the IMHO Sunday presents the latest Coliseum website camera update. First, a brief moment of silence for the now destroyed old Coli press box.  https://app.oxblue.com/open/usc/lacoliseumrenovation

Gone but not forgotten: It was sentimental tears seeing the aged Coliseum Press Box being destroyed. So many memories – good and bad – but a great place to converse and watch a game.

Gone but not forgotten: While we admittedly aren’t thrilled with the Coliseum renovation plans, we are intrigued regarding the new press box. Some of the planned perks has got many of the scribes excited about the new viewing digs. We are told that behind each writer’s seat will be cubicle in which to put articles of clothing and briefcases, a luxury that didn’t exist in the old press box.

Gone but not forgotten: Certainly, one of the challenges of the old press box was that even though you might be seated on the 50-yard-line, you could be stuck with a vertical metal window slot in front of you, which meant leaning to one side or the other when the ball was in the vicinity of the 50. No complaints here, just happy to be there and enjoy the game.

View from the top: As mentioned before regarding the old press box, there was nothing like the viewing spot on a clear day where one could see the famous Hollywood sign, a beautiful view of the buildings of downtown L.A., and, of course, the University of Southern California.

The post-game show…

Transfer: The proposed idea of allowing collegiate players to transfer to another university without having to redshirt a year would bring a titanic of chaos. Think about it, if a doesn’t make first team in spring ball, rather than work his way up, he’ll just transfer. Horrible idea, to say the least.

Transfer – Part 2: If you need further proof of the potential effects of possible new transfer rule, just look what it has done locally at the high school level in the California Interscholastic Federation (CIF). The amount of transfers is out of control.  If you think that recruiting is cutthroat now, this could be a full-on disaster.

Sign of the early sign:
Speaking of a new recruiting rule already in effect, just look what’s happening with players that signed in December that want to either change their mind or continue to take recruiting trips. With coaching changes like at Arizona and recruit “signer’s remorse,” there are potentially big issues. The old way of doing things – signing the first week in early February – might not have been perfect – but this new option is more trouble than it’s worth.

The last word: One final Super Bowl piece of trivia, you might want to know there has never been a former USC quarterback that has won a Super Bowl.

Greg Katz

Now entering his 59th season of either writing, broadcasting, or just plain watching USC football, WeAreSC columnist Greg Katz began his affiliation with the website back in 2001, introducing his well-received O/NSO (The Obvious/The Not So Obvious) column and later adding his respected IMHO Sunday opinion and tidbits column. Greg, a former ESPN.com college football columnist covering USC, is also a member of the Football Writer's Association of America. He is also known in Southern California as a professional public address announcer, having called the the 1996 Rose Bowl Game between USC and Northwestern. Greg also holds a master's degree in athletic administration and was a former varsity high school coach of 27 years.

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