Category Archives: Game

USC wins annual USC-UCLA Manager Game

First off all, sincere apologies for not updating the past few weeks. Finals and the end of the semester caught up with me and it was busy.

But nonetheless, we continue on.

Every year, the USC managers play the UCLA managers in a game of flag football during Rivalry Week.

As a matter of fact, we spend much of the year preparing for this game every year. After practice once or twice a week, we scrimmage against each other. Getting conditioned and developing chemistry with each other is very important.

On the Wednesday before the USC-UCLA “varsity” game, we ventured to UCLA’s practice field. We arrived to a rockin’ field, filled with a sound system, fans and about 30-40 UCLA football players. We knew this game was important.

However, we came prepared as well. We arrived in a convoy of 6 cars. Fellow students, trainers, student workers, family and 10 or so players made their way out to Westwood. It was amazing.

The game rules included:

– Flag football
– Two, thirty minute halves (running clock)
– 7 vs. 7
– 80 yard field
– 4 downs to get 20 yards
– Pass rush allowed

The pass rush slowed our offense in the first half. We only earned one first down in the first 30 minutes, and that was on the final play of the half. We had never played with a rush before, so it took some adjusting.

Defensively, we were on fire. Despite allowing one touchdown in the final minute, our line and defensive specialists all played marvelously. On the line, Eric Ziskin and Jeff Pardue held it down. Great effort.

Down 7-0 at halftime, we had some game-planning to do in the second half. We scrapped the playbook we had created the previous week. Our plan: Run a fast-paced, Oregon-like offense and ‘wing it.’ Our athletic ability and team chemistry would take us from there. We scored touchdowns on 3 of our 4 possessions: 1 pass from me to Sean Bell, and 2 to Alden Weiss. Couldn’t get any more productive than that.

Again, our defense was stellar. Gavin Williams and Wilson Palmer got interceptions and Sean Bell had about 5 or 6 pass deflections. Again, our line was stellar. On both sides of the ball. Matt Anzueto and Asad Sayed were also big contributors to that.

Our final drive was really epic. We got the ball back with 10:00 trailing in the game after the Palmer interception, leading 14-7.We held the ball for the next 9 minutes, going 3-for-3 on 4th down conversions and ended with a game-clinching 15-yard touchdown pass to Weiss. UCLA got the ball back with 1:00 minute to go, trailing by two touchdowns. It was over.

It was an emotional game; so fun. So great to see this team come back and get a win, especially after an ugly 1st half. The victory extended our winning streak to three games.

Before we make it four-in-a-row, check out some pictures below:

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Electric atmosphere vs. Oregon…but no “W”

In my three years as a student manager of USC football, never have I been in the Coliseum with the atmosphere it had this past Saturday night against No. 1 Oregon.

It ranked higher than our epic match against Ohio State in 2008. No question.

I have said the first 35 minutes (1st half + first 5:00 of the 2nd) were the most exciting 35 minutes I have witnessed while working with the program. With the back and forth scoring, big plays and a rocking “RedOut” atmosphere, the Coliseum provided an unbelievable place to watch a football game.

With College GameDay on hand for our Homecoming game, as well, USC was simply buzzing.

While the excitement was all there, the Trojans couldn’t finish the job, losing to the best team in the country, 53-32. It was rough to watch our Trojans drop another game this season. I hate losing.

But that doesn’t mean USC is no longer the “USC” we have become accustomed too. Although we’re going through a rough patch now, the Trojans will be back. Bet on it.

Fight On!

Now, enjoy some behind-the-scenes photos from Saturday:

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Photos from Stanford

It’s tough to relive pictures from a loss, but here is a great slideshow of the weekend at Stanford. Pictures of the locker room, Stanford’s goofy band and miscellaneous Jimokes lie ahead:

Fight On!

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No posts and two losses

First of all, I’m sorry it’s been so long since I have last posted. I didn’t have a camera during our victory in Washington State, so I failed to have visual media of the game. For cool pictures from that game, check out Sean Bell’s blog.

I also recently had a death in my family, which caused me to miss the USC-Washington game last week. While it was obviously appropriate to skip the game, it felt weird. I had gone to 27 consecutive USC football games prior to last week. Well, guess I’m back at one. If you’d like to see a recap of last week’s loss, check out Sean’s blog again. He’s been covering for me the past couple weeks. And, of course, does an excellent job!

But, now on to this week. As you know, it turned out to be another heart-breaker for the Trojans. Who would’ve thought the rarity of losing on a game-winning field goal as time expires would happen two times in a row! Man, it is truly tough to walk off the field after something like that. But all in all, it was an incredible game (from a spectator standpoint). The predicted offensive shootout played to be just that, with two of the nation’s best QBs (Stanford’s Andrew Luck and USC’s Matt Barkley) battling it out until the clock read 0:00. True freshman wide receiver Robert Woods also had a career game (12 catches, 224 yards, 3 TDs).

USC’s offense continued to roll, piling up yards and putting up points. But, again, it was the defense that allowed another last second drive to allow the other team put up points in the final moments. Tough, indeed.

All in all, however, it was a great weekend up in Stanford. I enjoy the beautiful campus and the thousands of USC fans coming up for the “Weekender,” as USC students dub the yearly trip to the Bay Area.

While we have lost two games in a row, our focus has already turned to Cal. We’re ready to Beat the Bears come Saturday!

Fight On!

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Don’t ya know: Trojans take down Minnesota

The Trojans are back from Minnesota, and sit at an undefeated 3-0 record. Only 29 teams in the FBS are 3-0. Even a stranger stat: For the first time since 2007, USC is 3-0. They fell victim early in the season to Oregon State in 2008 and to Washington in 2009. That has to make you fans happy, right?

USC is 3 rounds in on our 13-round fight.

This trip to Minnesota was fun for the entire program: players, managers and staff. But if meant a little more for me. My entire Dad’s family lives in Minnesota, and I have been there every couple years or so my entire life. So I was happy I got to bring tons of family to the Trojans-Gophers game on Saturday.

And then we ventured to the Metrodome for the Vikings-Dolphins game on Sunday. That was a highlight for me, as I’ve been a die-hard Vikings game since I was two years old. Although, it was unfortunate they had to lose…

But back to the task at hand.

The Trojans rolled into Minneapolis late Thursday night. On Friday, while the managers busied themselves at the stadium setting up the locker room, the team held a walk-through at local De la Salle High School in downtown Minneapolis.

Saturday was, of course, Game Day. One of the single greatest days of the year. We rolled into beautiful TCF Bank Stadium (in just its second year of operation) and enjoyed a nice day under the cold sun.

The second half proved to be very successful for the Trojan football team. True freshman Robert Woods brought back a 97-yard touchdown, quarterback Matt Barkley had an up-and-down day, Allen Bradford broke out for the first time this season and the defense continued its dominance it displayed last week against Virginia.

Here’s to the Trojans putting together the offense we saw at Hawaii and the defense we’ve seen the past two games in the same game this week. We have Washington State on Saturday at noon.

After a day off of practice on Monday, the Trojans are hitting the field hard in full pads today.

But before this week continues, enjoy this gallery of photos from last weekend’s victory in the land of 10,000 lakes:

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Virginia Recap

Well it wasn’t that pretty, but the Trojans are 2-0.

USC’s 2010 home opener showed a flip-flop of what the Trojans showcased last week in Hawaii. This time, it was the defense that caused turnovers and limited the Cavaliers to 14 points. However, the offense struggled to get a solid rhythm throughout, although quarterback Matt Barkley played well.

From our standpoint, it was awesome to be back at the Coli, after a 10-month layover. The atmosphere was incredible, and the fans were pumped! My favorite line of the weekend, on a shirt I saw, read, “You Can’t Sanction the Endzone.” I felt the fans held that belief throughout the long day.

It speaks volumes for what it’s like to be a Trojan.

Anyways, I’m stoked to be 2-0. With a 13-round heavyweight fight, we are getting there! Taking it one game at a time!

Not it’s on to Minnesota! Beat the Golden Gophers!!

Now, I’m sorry to disappoint, but my camera battery ran out before the game on Saturday, so my usual wonderful pictures aren’t here. Instead, I took a few with my iPhone. And grabbed the last few from the web. Enjoy…

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Hawaiian Conquest

After spending four days in Hawaii, the team and Jimokes are back to reality in Los Angeles.

The trip (err, vacation) was incredible. We had a couple hours a day to spend around the resort, located right on the beach. My hotel balcony was overlooking the Pacific Ocean. With beautiful skies and fresh blue water, the sights were amazing. And pictures can’t do it justice.

When it was all said and done, we also had a football game. Our locker room setup was great. We made the helmets “pop” and the locker room shine! One of the greatest things we Jimokes get to look forward to is the weekly locker room setup. It’s our time to show-off our abilities.  It’s our “game.”

It was hot–and humid–on the field, with the turf field absorbing a lot of heat. But it was offset by nice rainbows that creeped up over the stadium from time to time.

I want you to know, that I am so happy to be back in the season. With games every week for the next three months, it’s going to be an awesome ride.

We have Virginia in six days! Fight On!

For pictures from this past week, enjoy these:

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