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Pete’s Arboblog: Bowl prep begins

by Pete Arbogast, the voice of the Trojans

As disappointing as it may have been to lose the Pac-12 final to Stanford, who among us believed, after losing to Washington and switching coaches, that we would actually make it?! I know I HOPED it; but believed it—-I’m not sure about that.

With our numbers still down, and much of our talent hanging around below the true junior line, we might have made it a year early.

And then we ran into the buzz saw called McCaffrey. Tough little nut, ain’t he? I gave him my first place vote for the Heisman. If he were with Alabama he would have beaten the eventual winner, even if they were on the same roster at the same time.

I hope he goes pro and strikes while the iron is hot.   He may never get a better chance.

And I will root for Stanford over Iowa, because unless it’s the Bruins, I want the Pac-12 to beat the “big” “10”.

As for our bowl date, I always love a matchup with a traditional school from that conference….it makes the blood boil. SC and Wisconsin don’t have a huge history, but two of the 6 games—all Trojan victories—have been rather important. The ’53 Rose Bowl win 7-0 was the first time the pacific Coast team had every beaten the Big 10 team since they signed their exclusive deal.

The in ’63 the Trojans got way up and had to hold on in a thriller 42-37. I have seen well over 400 USC football games in person now; that happened to be my third. A lot of heroes as a kid from that team.   I’ll talk more about it in the next piece. I also saw the game in ’66 at the Coliseum, and being of a certain age, there aren’t a ton of SC fans that can say they’ve seen those two games. Some, but not a ton.

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Thrilled to see Zach is staying. If it goes well, he’s an AA OT next year and maybe the first draft pick in the NFL draft in ’17.

Sorry to see Sua go, for our sakes, but certainly not for his. One of the smartest football players I have ever seen in terms of awareness of the entire picture all the time. First rounder for sure, and he’ll be tough to replace, but life goes on.  We will certainly have him on the final post game show after the win over the Badgers!

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Totally shocked by the women’s volleyball team’s total collapse with a 13-9 lead and a spot in the FF on the line against Kansas. Great season turns into just a good one. Did you see the look on the Kansas player’s faces? You could tell they absolutely did not believe what had just happened.

On the other hand, the Men’s water polo team, with one senior of note, made their 11th straight NCAA final. This will lead to another several titles in the next few years.

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It seems like folly to say the Pac-12 will win every single bowl game it’s in, so I will say the conference will lose one game in the entire post-season. Maybe Washington.

But I really believe we could win them all. Go Cornhuskers!

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I liked that Clay gave some coaches their walking papers early—it gives them a chance to go find a job quickly. Interesting hire of Tee as OC. The new DC, I hope, is a much bigger splash (no offense to Mr. Martin).

Love that the graduate assistants and others left to man the ship get a good chance to hone their skills in a bowl game prep. Well deserved.

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As you saw last night against CPSLO, this men’s hoops team is a team on the rise. Look out for the Trojans. And the women are getting votes in the polls finally.

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Here, lots of work getting the new winter basketball season up and running at the Y, getting ready for the Holiday Bowl and working a lot of fill-in shifts at The Beast. Oh and Christmas shopping.

See you guys in San Diego at dinner over near the hotel perhaps. Let’s hoist one to the boys and the New Year!

Fight ON!



Garry Paskwietz
Author
Garry Paskwietz

A 1988 graduate of USC with a degree in Sports Information. Worked in sports marketing for LA Lakers and Miller Brewing Company. Began covering the Trojans in 1996 with the Trojan Football Fax. Founded WeAreSC in November 1998 with stints at Scout and ESPN. Emmy-winner while covering high school football at Fox Sports West.


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