Category Archives: Beyond The Ballpark

Sunday Night Tale: Beatz N Bitez…Another Kid n Drei Tale

PicsArt_08-06-08.25.41Hungry Kid? That’s one BIG APPLE! The Blue sure took a big bite out of The Big Apple this weekend…

Hey Kid! You ain’t the only one who had a Big Apple appetite this weekend. Some other Kid in Blue been crushing those apples this weekend…

 

PicsArt_08-06-08.46.46 Hey, Drei’s got a big appetite for apples too…

As first year broadcaster Joe Davis has said…2017…Moment after moment…

Extra Innings…Beats by Kid

Also featuring Mid City DJ Reno Sparks

 

Ballpark Budget Travel…The Megabus Experience…L.A. to The Bay…4/25/2017

Planning ahead for a trip can be a chore. Saving up for one can be even more. Fortunately for me, here in L.A. I have Megabus as an option. With it’s fares as low as $1, you can’t be that. Of course, there’s a caveat. More on that later…

 Union Station, Monday night, 4/24. Patiently waiting…

With the red-eye cheduled to leave at 10 past 11, our bus, originating from Anaheim is running late. Though Megabus’s on time performance can be spotty at times, I’ve never had any serious issues. 

With our bus arriving just past midnight, we are greeted by a somewhat surly driver. After another pickup at Burbank, the ride goes smoothly. 

 Pit stop, Lost Hills. Always nice to step out for some fresh air…

 Gotta take my Magic Gnome to hostile territory…

After a pit-stop, it’s smooth sailing to The Bay making a brief stop at the West Oakland BART Station to drop off Oakland bound passengers. The West Oakland BART stop is a good location for those heading to an A’s game or elsewhere in the East Bay…

Tuesday morning, 4/25. SF Megabus Stop. In the distance, AT&T Park. See the floodlights…

Though we left L.A. about 90 minutes past scheduled departure, we would arrive to Baghdad by the Bay only 45 past our ETA, 15 minutes before 8. With a whole day ahead, arriving 45 minutes late, all things considered wasn’t so bad.  

 Tuesday Morning, McCovey Cove…

20170429_223953 That beanie comes in handy up north. 

As mentioned earlier, Drei had a whole day ahead of him, a whole day to Cruise The Streets of San Francisco

From Market & Powell, through The Haight…The Panhandle to Golden Gate Park, Drei sure got around The Streets of San Francisco…Drei even got to check out The Summer of Love 50th Anniversary Exhibit at the De Young Museum. 

Prior to that evening’s game, I had a chance to take in some sights and eats from The Garden at AT&T Park.

Thanks to some media connections, I was able to make the most out of the minimum. Even without connections, the Megabus still does help on the wallet, especially when you’re just doing this for the day and into the night. 

Our Boys in Blue would take down the hated ones, thanks of course to Kid K, who just seems to thrive on pitching in hostile territory…

Snapchat-1582626380

 Time to head home…

The departure time back to L.A. would be a quarter past midnight. As I boarded my bus, the driver who checked off my reservation quipped that I was the $1 man. Apparently, the $1 fare is to that lucky passenger who snatches it first once Megabus releases their sale dates. After that, the fares gradually goes up, starting at $5 to as much as $41 pending ticket sales and date of purchase. Friday and Sunday seem to have the high priced fares as many college students rely on their service. 

In all, including the $1 processing fee each way, my trip to The Bay was a grand total of $4 ! Of course, the caveat to that is you have to know far ahead of time, at least 2 months, when you plan to travel. Also, you must constantly monitor the Megabus site when their fares are released. A good way to do that is to follow them on Twitter on turn on their notification alerts. 

The ride back to L.A was much smoother. A win by The Blue most certainly helped. Heck, we would even arrive 15 minutes ahead of schedule. 

The Megabus experience, with proper preparation, can be an adventure. Honestly, the redeye, which for me, acts as mobile lodging, is geared more for the single and budget minded traveler. Many passengers have shared their tales on Megabus, but it is what it is. For $1 each way, you can’t beat budget travel.

Feeling adventurous enough to do Megabus throughout other parts of the country en route to your ballpark travels? Check out this Megabus Tutorial for more on how to do your ballpark journey on a budget. 

Stay tuned for Drei’s next Megabus adventure…Coming Soon…

If You’re Going to San Francisco…

OK, with The Boys in Blue already paying a visit twice, their next visit won’t be until September. But that shouldn’t stop any of you ballpark chasers on making the journey up north, should it?

Summer of Love_Haight and Masonic Mural

This summer marks the 50th Anniversary of The Summer of Love. The summer where folks from all over gathered from Haight-Ashbury to Golden Gate Park to preach Love and Peace, among other activities…

Summer of Love_Drei at Haight and Masonic Cruising The Haight…Haight and Masonic

Before heading to the De Young over at Golden Gate Park, to prepare myself, I decided to take a cruise The Haight, The Panhandle on to Golden Gate Park, along with a couple of my Blue clad buddies…

 Jerry Garcia mural, Haight and Cole

20170425_095850Drei and Jerry…

 

20170425_101929Blue Dog and Magic Gnomeon the corner of Haight and Ashbury

To celebrate the 50th anniversary of The Summer of Love, The De Young Museum will be featuring The Summer of Love Experience: Art, Fashion, and Rock & Roll

Summer of Love_Stickers Faux pins 

 

Prior to entering the museum, several faux street signs line the entrance, each noting an “intersection” of past and present.

 

As I walked through the exhibit,  though my existence here in planet earth would be established 7 years after the Summer of Love, I made it a point to tell myself to get past the fact this would not be a re-creation of that whimsical summer as evidenced through the mannequins seen above modeling the clothes of 1967. 

Aside from the clothing, the exhibit features a vast and at times, a repeat of concert posters…

As a huge fan of 60s pop culture, though I was not expecting a recreation of that Summer of ’67 the overabundance of clothing and posters made the exhibit a somewhat underwhelming experience with little perspective as I could only muster so many posters. That may explain why this digital story provided on the exhibits page. In case you haven’t quite had your fill of art and fashion, here you go

Not all is lost inside the exhibit. The highlight for me was Bill Ham’s Kinetic Light Painting room that featured a psychedelic light show accompanied by that era’s music as I did my best to act as if I was on some acid trip…

Should you find your way through De Young, check out Stuart Davis: In Full Swing in the museum’s 3rd floor. Davis, born in 1892 was a lifelong jazz enthusiast whose art presents the vibrant colors of European Modernism. 

“Stuart Davis was an artist both ahead of his time, and completely immersed in it,” says Max Hollein, director and CEO of the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco. “His works provided comment on the times and were simultaneously a dominant force in postwar art. The de Young has always believed that artists have a duty to comment and critique our culture and we are pleased to show how one American artist responded to the tumultuous times he lived through.”

Admission to the De Young Museum is $15. Dual exhibition tickets to Summer of Love and Stuart Davis are $30, a good bargain given each exhibit is $25 each. 

Hey, Kid K, they named a street after you !!!

Timeline…

PicsArt_04-25-12.05.39 Hippie…Hipster…Is there a difference?

December 8, 1980, The Monday Night When Howard Announced The Tragic News…

     “Remember this is just a football game, no matter who wins or loses. An unspeakable tragedy confirmed to us by ABC News in New York City: John Lennon, outside of his apartment building on the West Side of New York City, the most famous perhaps, of all of The Beatles, shot twice in the back, rushed to Roosevelt Hospital, dead on arrival. Hard to go back to the game after that news flash, which, in duty bound, we have to take. Frank?”

The exact words Howard Cossell would announce to viewers 34 years ago this Monday evening, on December 8, 1980, as the New England Patriots would battle the Miami Dolphins in a huge game on Monday Night Football. It was during the waning moments of the 4th quarter as the Patriots we’re attempting a game winning field goal when Howard Cossell would do the uneviable task of announcing to the viewers that former Beatle John Lennon had been shot outside the Dakota Apartments in New York City as he was returning home from a recording session. Just six years prior, Cossell had interviewed John Lennon during halftime on Monday Night Football…

There are so many way’s to describe how the music of The Beatles and John Lennon has to this very day touched so many peoples lives. The influence that Beatlemania had was so huge and so rapid that The Beatles we’re the first rock n roll band to perform live concerts at Major League Baseball venues, performing at Shea Stadium in 1964 and evnetually performing their 2nd to last ever live performance at Dodger Stadium in August of 1966.

wpid-20140718_144630.jpg From August 2006, looking back on the 40th anniversary of The Beatles performance at Dodger Stadium

beatles_dodgerstadium The Fab Four performing at Dodger Stadium, August 28, 1966. ( Dodger Stadium’s appearance sure has passed the test of time…)

JOHNLENNON_LATIMES12081980 Front cover of the L.A. Times, December 9, 1980

Here is a 2010 clip from ESPN’s Outside The Lines reflecting upon the ill-fated night of December 8, 1980…

At the time Cossell announced to the viewers the untimely death of John Lennon on that ill-fated evening of December 8, 1980, it was not possible for people around the world to have known the news right away. There we’re only 3 major networks at the time, but most notably, in 1980, we didn’t have such things as ipads or droids among other electronical devices that we take for granted today. There was no way fans could have shared their feelings at that very moment with fellow family and friends as we do today with the ever so endless social media outlets available in our pockets.

So of course it was impossible for the 75,000 plus fans at the Orange Bowl to have been aware of what happened to the famed Beatle. I can only imagine that if an event of this magnitude had taken place today during a huge sporting event, be it MNF or the World Series, what the mood would be like inside the venues. Would many of us be on a emotional roller coaster of excitement of being at a huge sporting event while hiding the somberness on our minds, knowing that someone who had a profound impact on us has passed on ? I’m sure many of us would be paying instant tributes throughout the world of social media.

I’ve heard many people talk about the night John Lennon was assassinated, putting it in the same sentence of the tragic assassinations of King and Kennedy. To many, the night John Lennon was killed marked the end of an era . I was not around when King and Kennedy we’re shot, and I was only 6, in the beginning stages of being a Dodger fan. ( I’m also trying to put some light into this folks…). I don’t really recall where I was the night John Lennon was shot, however I do remember various radio stations playing continuos music from The Beatles during the week as it was played in our house in Hollywood.

Do any of you recall where you we’re the night of December 8, 1980 ? Did you find out while watching MNF ? We’re you putting up a Christmas tree when the news was announced ?

 Happy Christmas…. Someday, War will be over….

 

A Night To Honor 42

During last night’s UCLA-USC game at the Rose Bowl, where UCLA for the 3rd straight season came out victorious 38-20, before the start of the 2nd quarter, Dodger and UCLA legend Jackie Robinson was honored with a ceremony celebrating the 75th anniversary of his arrival to the Westwood campus .  Although Jackie would wear number 28 in his days as a Bruin, the number 42 has been retired throughout all UCLA athletics and his number will be prominently displayed throughout each athletic venue .  3 current UCLA athletes will continue to wear the number 42 until they graduate, just as Mariano Rivera did for the Yankees until his recent retirement.  DREI_SKIP

Me with former UCLA running back Skip Hicks, who donned the number 42 in his day…

With the number 42 now permanently retired throughout all UCLA athletics, the number 42 jersey I have displayed with Skip Hicks certainly means that much more to me now, as from this point forward, I can now say that I have a piece of history that not only has a permanent fixture throughout all athletic departments and throughout UCLA, but a piece of history that celebrates the many accomplishments not only on the field but beyond as well. 

MURAL

In front of his mural, located in Jackie Robinson Stadium, where the UCLA baseball team plays it’s home games

dre42

Proudly displaying 42 for both the Dodger Blue and the UCLA Blue and Gold…

Who Runs L.A. ?

Last night’s dominant display the UCLA over USC would have definitely made Jackie proud.  With UCLA’s 38-20 victory over USC , it is obvious right now that at this moment, UCLA currently runs L.A.

WHO RUNS L.A.

And to make it official, we crown The Victory Bell with a touch of Dodger Blue.  Oh would Jackie be so proud…. 

A very happy day for both of Jackie’s one time affiliations….

DREI_JACKIE STATUE

And on one final note, many thank to all of you who have read and followed my posts throughout the entire year. Drei here would like to wish all of you a very Happy and Safe Thanksgiving. 

 

Sights and Sounds From Westwood to DTLA

Happy Friday everyone !  As we all get ready for the one event that divide’s all of us Dodgers fans, the SC-UCLA game, Drei here brings you some sight’s, rants, and sounds from Westwood to DTLA, all in one night, Thursday, 11/20/2014.  But first, some big Dodgers/UCLA related news..

The Legacy of 42 Continues…

As many of you know, Jackie Robinson was not only one of the greatest ballplayers who donned the Dodger Blue, but was also an outstanding humanitarian. Perhaps many of you are aware that Jackie Robinson was a 4 sport athlete at UCLA .  Today, it was announced the UCLA will be naming 22 of it’s athletic facilities after the Dodger/UCLA legend.  The number 42 will also be painted into the Rose Bowl field at the 25 yard line for tomorrow night’s clash.  

jackie

JACKIE_STATUE

From Westwood to DTLA

Here L.A., we can never have enough entertainment options.  Sporting events are no different.  So on this Thursday evening, I made the attempt to pull double dip, finding myself at what should have been the BEAT SC Bonfire ( more on that later ) and the Kings game at Staples Center.  Here it is, starting from Westwood…

ROYCE HALL

Greetings from the Hills of Westwood…

VICTORY BELL 1120

Oh the sight of The Victory Bell in it’s rightful blue color never get’s old…

VICTORY BELL_HUGO

My buddy Hugo also getting in on the action.  He was one happy camper last night with his Raiders FINALLY winning a game…

PREBONFIRE

Waiting for the rally to get started.  Drei couldn’t stay for the whole rally as Drei had a hockey game to go to thanks to some free tickets.  Drei would find out later that the rally would be without the bonfire.  Why ?  Because 50 student protesters decided to put a halt to the bonfire in protest to the recent UC tuition fee hikes.  While I do wholeheartedly agree with the cause, I also do feel there is a time and place for civil protests, having participated in one myself recently.  Putting a halt to an event that is meant to celebrate an annual rivalry as well as unify students even as an escape from reality for  2 hours , well, may have just left a bad taste among the other . I understand the concerns of rising tuition costs and support the students in their concern, but to put a halt to a long standing tradition that has nothing to do with the current tuition hikes ?  I hope this does not cloud the thoughts of the other student’s who we’re most certainly looking forward to the bonfire.  I actually don’t think it will in the long run because once the dust settles from this weekends game, the majority of the students, all throughout the UC system as well, will still all be unified as one against these tuition hikes.  OK, that’s my rant for this week.  As for the bonfire being put to a halt, Jim Mora…

Before we head toward the Staples Center…

BRUIN STATUE

Gotta make sure our Bruin Bear is well protected from such the evil sources of Troy…

Mid-City Beats

As we make our way toward Staples Center, here’s some beats from Mid City’s resident DJ, once again… Reno Sparks.  Yo Reno, What It Be ? What It Do ?

Staples Center, Kings vs Hurricane

KINGSGAME

My view from up in 305.  Arrived just in time to see Tanner Pearson end his scoring drought with the game winning goal in the 2nd period as the Kings would come out victorious 3-2 over Carolina.  Hopefully, I’ll have more to bring you from Staples Center as the hockey season goes along.  For a venue now entering it’s 16th season, Staples Center sure doesn’t feel like it’s age .  

And that, folks, is your typical Thursday evening in L.A, from Westwood to DTLA.  Hey, enjoy the game this weekend.  Regardless of your allegiance, it should be a great game.  Drei here is sticking with his pick earlier this week, UCLA 34 USC 24.  Your prediction ?

Ah, the sweet sound of VICTORY to ring in the weekend !!!  If all goes well, the Victory Bell will remain in it’s rightful color, BLUE !!!

Rivalry Week… USC vs. UCLA, Drei’s Favorite UCLA Moments

When talking about rivalries here we talk about the Dodgers and Giants. Ah, but this week, we focus on the one thing that divides Dodgers fans ( And Angels fans too ) .  The annual SC-UCLA football game, taking place this Saturday afternoon at The Rose Bowl. With Oregon State’s recent upset win over Arizona State, the Bruins now find themselves in the drivers seat to win the Pac 12 South.  Win their final 2 games of the season against USC and Stanford, and they will be playing Oregon in Levi Stadium on December 5th for the Pac 12 Championship.  Of course, there are these other tie breaking scenarios that could also happen in the wild and crazy Pac 12 South.  OK, before we move on, how about some Dodger trivial facts tied into this weeks rivalry…

Dodgers who played at USC

Ron Fairly

Len Gabrielson

Mark McGwire ( Coach )

J.P. Howell

Dodgers who played at UCLA

Tim Leary

Ron Roenicke

Todd Zeile

Eric Karros

Dave Roberts

and of course…

JACKIE_STATUE

Jackie Robinson…

JACKIE_MURAL

This statue and mural of Jackie Robinson are located along the first base concourse over at Jackie Robinson Stadium where the UCLA baseball team plays it’s home games.

USC-UCLA Fun Facts…

USC leads the rivalry 44-30-7

USC has won 12 of the last 14 meetings since 1999

UCLA has won the last two meetings

UCLA owns the longest winning streak in this series with 8 consecutive wins from 1991-98

UCLA is 9-7 against USC at The Rose Bowl since moving their home games to Pasadena in 1982

Puig_VictoryBell

The Victory Bell It’s what both these schools play for each year.  The winning school not only is the recipient of this prized possession, but also get’s to paint the bell in it’s main school color.  Here, our Mini Puig seems to enjoy his place next to The Victory Bell, which has been in the hands of UCLA the last two seasons.  ( Mini Puig look’s like he want’s to start an 8 Clap…)

VICTORYBELL

Oh the joy of ringing that Victory Bell, um, that Bruin Blue Victory Bell !!! ( I’m sure by now you have figured out where my allegiance in this rivalry stands…)

DREI_BELL

Posing with The Victory Bell and displaying one of the greatest to wear both the Bruin and Dodger Blue, Jackie Robinson…

In the spirit of Rivalry Week, Drei here now brings you his Fave 5 USC-UCLA games attended over the years….

5. 11/17/2012 UCLA 38 USC 28

One year removed from the 50-0 debacle at The Coliseum, with 1st year coach Jim Mora taking over the head coaching reigns and redshirt QB phenom Brett Hundly under center, the Bruins would storm out to a quick 24-0 lead in the 1st half.  SC would later close the gap to 3 points in the 4th quarter, however, the Bruins would counter on a Jonathan Franklin touchdown run late in the 4th and a huge sack of Matt Barkley from Anthony Barr would seal the deal for The Sons of Westwood.  Prior to this game, SC had won 11 of 12 in this series.  UCLA has now won the last two, with Hundley sporting a perfect 2-0 record against the Spirit of Troy.

HUNDLEY_EVANS

Brett Hundley and Bruin Wide Receiver Shaq Evans celebrating a 3rd quarter TD in the 2012 game.  ( Yup, I was that close folks…)

SHAQ_DREI

Shaq Evans and I proudly displaying my pic of him and Hundly celebrating.  Shaq is currently in the IR with the New York Jets.

4. 12/2/2006 UCLA 13 USC 9

A USC win would not only put USC back in the National Title game for the 3rd straight season, but also tie the rivalry record for most consecutive wins by either school at 8.  With USC driving for a possible game winning touchdown late in the 4th quarter, Eric McNeal picks off a John David Booty pass deep in UCLA territory.  The interception would be huge as UCLA would prevent USC from playing in the National Championship game as well as preserve the longest winning streak in the series at 8.

POSTGAME 2006 Postgame celebration. I’m the one holding the dreaded horse hanging on it’s noose…

3. 11/20/1993 UCLA 27  USC 21

With a Pac-10 title and a Rose Bowl berth on the line for both schools, UCLA would race out to a 17-0 lead, a lead they would carry into halftime.  However, USC would mount a comeback and late in the 4th quarter USC QB Rob Johnson would drive his team all the way to the UCLA 2 inside a minute to play, trailing UCLA 27-21.  But on 3rd and Goal, Marvin Goodwin stepped in front of SC tight end Tyler Cashman to intercept what may have been the game winning TD for USC.  The win not only sent UCLA to it’s first Rose Bowl in 8 years, but also ended a streak of 10 games which USC had won with a Rose Bowl berth on the line.

2. 11/21/1992 UCLA 38 USC 37 

Due to a string of injuries to UCLA QB’s, John Barnes, who did not even have a spot on the spring roster, John Barnes, a walk-on only because his previous school UC Santa Barbara, dropped their football program, would be called upon to guide the Bruins in the biggest game of the season.  A tall task to ask of a 6th string QB huh ?  It seemed that way heading into the 4th quarter with UCLA trailing 31-17.  Ah, but this is where the legend of John Barnes was born.  UCLA would score 3 TD’s in the 4th quarter, two of them to J.J. Stokes, who would have a huge 4th quarter himself and etch his name into the hearts of every Bruin fan as well.  The 3rd of the 3 4th quarter TD’s would be a 90 hookup, Barnes to Stokes ( Still a popular phrase among the Bruin faithful who witnessed that magical evening in ’92… Barnes to Stokes ) to give UCLA a 38-31 lead.  SC would not go away as Rob Johnson would hookup with Johnny Morton on a huge 4th down conversion inside the UCLA 10 with less than a minute to play.  2 years prior, Johnny Morton would break the hearts of UCLA fans and nearly pulled off the same feat.  However, after a Rob Johnson TD, SC would decide to go for 2 rather than tie ( No OT in college football at the time ), and Rob Johnson’s pass would be knocked down by Nkosi Littleton, and UCLA would go on to upset SC 38-37.  John Barnes would finish with 385 passing yards, and  J.J. Stokes would finish with 6 catches, 263 yards receiving and 3 TD’s, including the game winning 90 yarder which many a Bruin looks back upon with these words… Barnes to Stokes .

And finally,  Drei’s all-time favorite SC-UCLA game ?  This will be no quick recap, I’ll warn you right now.  So enjoy folks… 

1. 11/23/1996 UCLA 48 USC 41, Double OT

It was the first season of the post Terry Donahue era.  UCLA came into this matchup with a mediocre at best 4-6 mark.   SC, who had high expectations heading into the season, was no better at 5-5.  UCLA had carried a 5 year winning streak heading into this contest, the longest streak in the rivalry at that time.  USC would storm to a 24-7 halftime lead, thanks in large part to 2 TD passes from Brad Otton to USC freshman phenom R.J. Soward.  Soward would finish the game with 6 recptions, 3 TD’s and 260 yards receiving, virtually the same stats J.J. Stokes had 3 years prior. 

The second half would be the most thrilling half I would ever have as a UCLA fan.  It would also be an emotional roller coaster ride as well.  The second half would start out strong for UCLA as UCLA QB sensation Cade McNown would connect with Danny Farmer on a long TD pass to close the gap to 24-14.  However, SC would answer back on a long drive of it’s own, brining the lead back up to 17. 

Before the kickoff, from my seat in the NE corner of the endzone, I take a quick glance at the Victory Bell and I see members of the UCLA Spirit Squad huddling around it, with two of the cheerleaders wraping their arms around it.  I knew what they we’re feeling.  The bell had been in UCLA’s possesion 5 years in a row and now the Bruins we’re in danger of surrendering the rivalry’s grand prize.  I was ready to step in front of the bell myself to be honest…

So on UCLA’s next possesion, after converting 3 huge 3rd down conversions, one of them a 3rd and 21, Cade McNown rushes for a TD to close the gap back to 10 heading into the 4th quarter. 

After both teams exchanged punts, with Matt Koffler now replacing an injured Brad Otton at QB for USC, Koffler would connect with R.J. Soward on a quick TD strike, giving SC what seemed to be an insurmountable 17 point lead .  That would be RJ Soward’s third TD reception of the game, 2 of them in which he would score in the NE corner of the endzone, yup, right in front of me.  In addition, SC safety Sammy Knight would also have a pick 6 finish, that’s right, in the NE corner of the enzone, uh-huh, right in front of me.  I was really having a great day to that point, wasn’t I ? 

So if UCLA had any thought’s of prolonging their winning streak to 6, they would need to mount a furious comeback.  After a Bjorn Merten field goal with just over 6 minutes left to play cut the deficit to 14, UCLA would get the ball back after keeping SC out of the enzone.  UCLA would score another TD to close the gap to 38-31 with under 3 minutes remaining.  SC would recover the onside kick and after a first down, all SC needed was one more first down and they would be able to run out the clock, and UCLA’s 5 year streak would be over.  Only a miracle would save UCLA…

Did I say a miracle would save UCLA ?  On a 2nd down run, SC running back LaValle Woods would have the ball stripped from him and Kusanti Abdul-Salam would recover for UCLA.  Here was UCLA’s chance.  One play after a huge 3rd down conversion from Cade McNown to little used Rodney Lee, UCLA running back Skip Hicks would bust up the middel 11 yards for the game tying score.  SC would have one last shot to win the game in regulation after a huge 3rd down reception by Chris Miller at the UCLA 23.  However, Adam Abram’s attempt at a 41 yard game winner would be blocked, and for the first and only time in the history of USC-UCLA, it was on to overtime.

In the first OT, both schools would exchange field goals.  On the first play of the second OT, Skip Hicks, running up the middle and seemingly stopped, would sneak out of nowhere and rush for  a go-ahead scoring TD to give UCLA it’s first lead of the game 48-41.  Where would Hicks’ TD run finish ?   You got it, the NE corner of the endzone, and beyond…

HICKS TD Here I am, in the blue hat with the gold rim, congratulating Skip Hicks on his 25 yard TD run that would be the eventual game winner.  Behind Hicks is Danny Farmer

Yup, there I was, the first to greet Hicks after one of the biggest and most memorable TD’s in the rivalry’s history…

SC was not finished.  On their next possesion, on 3rd and 3, Brad Otton would spot RJ Soward wide open after picking up UCLA’s blitz.  Soward had nothing but grass ahead of him.  Where would his potential game tying TD finish ?  Yup, right there in the NE corner of the endzone, right in front of me.  But it was not meant to be, as he would drop a sure TD and on 4th down, Koffler’s desperation pass would be intercepted in the endzone, and UCLA would win it’s 6th in a row over USC.  The streak would eventually reach 8, still the longest in the series. 

Though neither school would play in a bowl game that season, the ’96 game will always have a special place in my heart, of course for obvious reasons.  I mean, c’mon.  When you go to these games, you expect to talk about your favorite moments, but really, even though it’s 18 years later, does anyone really expect to also talk about their involvment with the players during one of the greatest moments that happended DURING the game ?  As one of my best friends Josh always says, ” You can’t make up stuff like this…”

DREI N SKIP 05 Chillin’ with Skip, 2005

Drei’s Prediction

Both schools come into the game with momentum on their sides.  UCLA come’s in with still a shot at the PAC-12 South title.  The key for UCLA to win once again will be Brett Hundley, as also acknowledged by USC.  SC’s defense has been known to wittle down in the 2nd half, and in the previous 2 meetings between these schools, Hundley’s mobility has proved to be SC’s achilles heel.  If UCLA can maintain that and keep SC’s defense chasing their running game, particularly in the 1st half, that can play huge later in the game.

UCLA 34  USC  24

HUNDLEY COOK Brett Hundley and Wayne Cook, past and present, a combined 4-0 against USC.  Hundley looks to make it 5-0 come Saturday…

DREI N BRETT Let’s make it 3 in a row over SC Brett !!!