Dodgers to Welcome The New Skip…Dodgers Fans Divided…

In honor of SC-UCLA week, here’s a brief spotlight on two former ballplayers on who have worn both the school colors and the Dodger Blue as either player or coach…

Dodgers_Mark McGwire Mark McGwire, USC, 1983-4. The former Trojan would play 16 MLB seasons with the Oakland A’s and St. Louis Cardinals, setting the than single-season home run record in 1998 with 70. He would don the Dodger Blue in 2013 as the hitting coach. He is currently in talks with the San Diego Padres for the bench coach position, the position vacated by the former UCLA Bruin and next Dodger manager…

dodgers_dave roberts Dave Roberts. Roberts would don the Blue as a player from 2002-04. Midway through the 2004 season, Roberts would be traded to the Red Sox, playing an instrumental role with Boston, remembered fondly in Red Sox Nation for The Steal, helping launch the Red Sox from a 3 games to none deficit to the Yankees in the 2004 ALCS en route to their first World Series title since 1918.  From 2010-15, Roberts had been the first base coach then the bench coach for the San Diego Padres. The managerial position had come down between Roberts and  Gabe Kapler, who had been the early favorite to win the position.

All along I had been in favor of Roberts over Kapler, a sentiment echoed by Fox Sports Ken Rosenthal. Kapler will make a fine manager some day, but to me what it came down to is on-field MLB coaching experience, which Roberts has 6 seasons of, making him the right choice for this current Dodger team.

2006_DAVE ROBERTS With Dave Roberts, Camera Day, PETCO Park, 4/13/2006. WELCOME HOME DAVE !!!

Away From The Diamond…Dodgers Fans Divided

It’s that time of year again. The one event that divides us Dodgers fans. The SC-UCLA game. UCLA has won the last 3 against the Men of Troy. For the 2nd time in 4 years, this one will be for the Pac 12 South and the right to play Stanford for the Pac 12 Championship.

It has been a crazy season in the Pac 12. Both SC and UCLA enter this contest with identical 5-3 conference records, in a 3 way tie with Utah, whom both UCLA and USC have defeated.  Winner of this game will be crowned the Pac-12 South Champion and will also face Stanford in the Pac 12 Championship game for the right to represent the Pac 12 in The Rose Bowl.

As we all know, anything can happen in these rivalry games. Both SC and UCLA have endured their roadblocks en route to this match-up. Statistically, both teams practically mirror each other, particularly on offense with UCLA having a slight edge in the running game while USC maintains an edge defensively against the run while UCLA  has the edge against the pass.

This game has the potential to be a high scoring game, with USC QB Cody Kessler and UCLA QB Josh Rosen being very highly touted. SC’s secondary has been suspect, while UCLA has at times had trouble stopping the power running game. Drei’s prediction… UCLA 38 USC 35. ( A game winning FG by Ka’imi Fairbairn ? )

The Victory Bell

The prize that’s awarded to the winning school…

Past High Scoring Thrillers…

1990. USC 45 UCLA 42. This would be a heart-breaker for me, as SC QB Todd Marinovich and UCLA QB Tommy Maddox would stage an epic 4th quarter, which both teams would combine for 42 points, capped off by Todd Marinovich’s TD game winning TD pass to Johnnie Morton with less than 20 seconds to play…

1996. UCLA 48 USC 41, Double OT. UCLA, down as much as 17 halfway through the 4th quarter, would stage a furious rally, capped off by Skip Hicks game tying TD under a minute to go. USC would have a chance to win at the end of regulation, but Adam Abrams would have his 41 yard FG attempt blocked. Skip Hicks would score the eventual game winning TD in the 2nd overtime, capping off a furious rally for UCLA, earning them their 6th straight win in the series…

HICKS TD Who is that guy in the blue hat greeting Skip Hicks on his game winning TD in the ’96 thriller ?

 

 

 

 

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