Tag Archives: Victory Bell

Rivalry Week…Congrats Skip !…Drei’s Favorite SC-UCLA Moment, A Skip Toward 6

Leading Off…

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Congratulations to our 2016 Manager of the Year, Dave Roberts ! In spite of the many injuries particularly to the starting rotation, the rookie manager led the Dodgers to their 4th straight NL West title. Like the starter rotation, Roberts alma mater, UCLA, will have to overcome some huge obstacles if they are to beat S.C. this Saturday…

Divided We Are…

The only thing that can divide Dodger fans, aside from recent elections, is the annual SC-UCLA game. Over the years USC has had the decided edge not only in wins but in conference and national championships

Prior to last season UCLA had won 3 straight from the Men of Troy. UCLA also owns the longest winning streak in the series, having won 8 straight from 1991 to 1998. 

After a 1-3 start that included an embarrassing loss to Alabama, USC has recovered remarkably, winning 6 straight including last weeks impressive win over the Washington Huskies. 

USC  is a heavy favorite over UCLA. Deservedly so. 

As we all know, when these two meet, all records are thrown out…

20 Years Ago…1996…A Skip Toward 6

” Skip Hicks holds the UCLA school record for touchdowns in a season and in a career, but most people seem to only remember two of them.

Hicks was an All-American running back his senior season with the Bruins and went on to play five seasons in the NFL, but it seems Bruins fans only remember his performance in one game: UCLA’s improbable comeback victory over USC in 1996.

“Hey, at least they remember me,” Hicks said.

It would be difficult for Bruins fans to forget. “

Peter Yoon, ESPNLosAngeles.com, Nov 30,2010

As for this Bruin fan, those 2 TD’s and that exhilarating Saturday afternoon will be ever so hard to forget…150 years down the road.

The afternoon would not start off so great for the UCLA faithful. USC would jump out to a 17-0 en route to a 24-7 halftime lead, thanks in large part to a pick six by Sammy Knight and a 67 yard TD reception by R.J. Soward. Both TD’s would finish in the NE corner of The Rose Bowl endzone…Right in front of me…Nothing but grass separating my vision of those two and their path…

The second half would start off with a bang as UCLA QB Cade McNown would find Danny Farmer on a post down the middle to draw UCLA within 10. SC would strike back though with a long drive of their own to bring the deficit back to 17 late in the 3rd…

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The Victory Bell…The prize that both schools play for…Currently in that “Other” schools possession in that “awful” shade of red…

With UCLA trailing by 17 once again, prior to SC kicking off, I couldn’t help but to take a glance at the Victory Bell…Painted a glorious Blue 5 years in a row…Possibly on the verge of being surrendered…A fact not lost among the UCLA cheerleaders, huddled around the bell as two of them had their arms tightly wrapped around the frame…

If UCLA was to surrender The Bell they wouldn’t do it lying down…Certainly not UCLA QB Cade McNown…McNown and company would counter back with a long drive, capped off by his 9 yard TD scramble that would bring UCLA back within 10…

20160924_154638 Kicking it with Cade McNown, 9/24/2016 prior to the UCLA-Stanford game

With the Bruins back in the game heading to the 4th, both teams exchanged punts. With just over 10 minutes to go, SC QB Matt Koffler finds R.J. Soward streaking down the sideline with…Once again…Nothing but grass separating him from the endz one…The NE Corner no less…Yup, right in front of me (I sure was having a great day huh?)…Putting SC back up by 17. At that point, it seemed all hope was lost…

As UCLA was driving toward a “possible” miracle, I head over to visit a buddy of mine who was seated in the SE corner of the upper end zone. Bjorn Merten would draw UCLA back within 2 scores with just under 7 minutes left. The SC fans in the south end zone, confident their 5 year losing streak was over, we’re chanting something about UCLA to the SC Band’s tune of Tusk…

As I returned to my seat in the NE corner of the endzone, UCLA would get the ball back and score a quick TD to pull them within 7 with just under 3 minutes to go…Some hope is still left…If we can recover the onside kick…Too bad it would go out of bounds…

After an SC first down, now inside 2 minutes, hope was all but gone for UCLA. One more first down and the 5 year streak would be over…Just as R.J. Soward proclaimed after putting his Men of Troy up by 17 earlier in the 4th…

Only a miracle would save UCLA…

Did I say only a miracle would save UCLA? As USC was trying to run out the clock, Kusanti Abdul-Salam would recover a LaValle Woods fumble! The Bruins would have new life! 

Inside a minute to go and the ball now at the SC 11 thanks to a huge 3rd down conversion to seldom used WR Rodney Lee, after an incomplete pass, the armchair QB in me tells the fans “GET THE BALL TO HICKS, LET HIM TAKE IT UP THE MIDDLE…” …

On 2nd and 10…” Hicks, up the middle…TOUCHDOWN UCLA !!!”

The Rose Bowl is in a frenzy. UCLA, who trailed for most of the game by as much as 17 had now tied the game at 38, capped off by that 10 yard run by Skip Hicks…A proud bearer of the number 42…The run that…Your’s Truly…Sitting a hundred yards away…Called

That’s one of the two TD’s this…And many other Bruin Faithful remember from Skip Hicks…

With everyone at The Rose Bowl on their feet since about the halfway point in the 4th, SC, however, would threaten. The final seconds of regulation would come down to a last-second 41 yard FG attempt by Adam Abrams. As SC was getting set to end their 5 year skid, I, along with 80,000 souls in The Rose Bowl, was yelling perhaps the loudest I could ever. Adam Abrams attempt at glory…BLOCKED !!! OVERTIME WE GO !!!

1996 would be the first year college football would have an overtime. During the first OT neither team could do much, both exchanging field goals. So now, the second OT…

UCLA would get the ball first…On the first play form scrimmage, Skip Hicks would take the handoff from Cade McNown. For a moment, it seemed a USC defender had Hicks wrapped up. Somehow, Hicks broke loose…Break loose he did…Just like that, UCLA would have their first lead of the day…As for the Hicks TD, where would it finish?

HICKS TD

All the way back and beyond the NE corner of the end zone. The fan just above Hicks to his right in the blue and yellow hat? Yup, you guessed it ! (Thank You YouTube !!!)

Other players and fans joined in the celebration…A celebration that seemed like an eternity! Game over right? Uh, not yet…

SC would get their turn with the ball and on 3rd and 3, spotting a UCLA blitz, Koffler would find a wide open RJ Soward…Nothing but grass ahead of him en route toward, yet again, the NE corner of the end zone and a possible taunt fest with us Bruin Faithful…If only he caught the ball…

Soward, who would have a record setting day for USC…Soward, BOASTING the 5 year skid was over…Did what so many wide receivers tend to do…Turn up field before securing the football ( To today’s UCLA’s receivers, take note…)

Now 4th down, USC was now in a do or die situation. Convert and their still alive. Otherwise, the streak continues…And on what would be the final play of the game, Matt Koffler’s floating duck, and I DO mean floating, flailed into the waiting arms of Anthony Cobbs.

BALLGAME !!! UCLA 48 USC 41

After trailing for much of the game, UCLA would mount a furious comeback, capped off by that miracle run by Skip Hicks. 30 minutes after the final play, we the Bruin Faithful we’re still in a frenzy…

As for me, in my “youthful innocence”, as I was still caught up in the Blue and Gold frenzy along the venerable Rose Bowl concourse, I just could not help but bellow out my version of Tusk…Even yelling out U-C-L-A…Daring the defeated Trojan Nation to yell out what they yelled during the 6 minute mark in the 4th. Nothing doing…

I ain’t gonna lie. There are plenty of emotions involved in this game from all involved. Students, fans, lifetime alums. Do I still get worked up for this game? You bet I do. Would I still be able to act the fool that I did 20 years ago? Uh, not entirely. At 42, a popular number from Westwood to The Ravine, it doesn’t quite come off the same…

42_UCLA Quad

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I also remember yelling ” I’VE STILL NEVER LOSS TO SC, I DON’T EVER WANT TO KNOW THE FEELING OF LOSING TO SC !!!…”

Well, that feeling is long gone now, the experience being far too frequent now.

” Skip Hicks holds the UCLA school record for touchdowns in a season and in a career, but most people seem to only remember two of them.”

Oh yeah, as for that 2nd TD, while many Bruins fans will forever remember, this Bruin fan will forever have it etched in his heart…

DREI_SKIP Kickin’ it with Skip Hicks, 2005. Other than Skip Hicks, and current linebacker Kenny Young, who will be the last Bruin to wear 42, some other Bruin that wore 42 would eventually wear another shade of blue as a MLB player…I wonder how he turned out…

Drei’s Prediction…

Drei is going with his heart once again. SC is a 12 1/2 point favorite. They just may be playing the best football in the Pac 12 right now. UCLA has struggled this season. UCLA is going with a backup QB in Mike Fafaul. Does Mike duplicate what John Barnes did for the Sons of Westwood in 1992. Can UCLA’s D keep it close enough to give them a chance in the 4th quarter. As they say in these rivalry games, throw out the record books…Anything can happen… UCLA 24 USC 23

Overtime…

As for Drei’s favorite SC-UCLA moment…20 Years Ago…Here it is, in it’s entirety…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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

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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 !!!

Beyond The Ballpark…Tailgaiting With Drei, 11/1/2014 Arizona vs. UCLA

Before we go beyond the ballpark…

KERSHAW_CYYOUNG KERSHAW_MVP

A huge CONGRATULATIONS to Clayton Kershaw for becoming the 1st pitcher since 1968 to win both the NL Cy Young and MVP in the same season.   Also, not forgotten here in the southland…

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Congratulations to Angels outfield Mike Trout on his MVP season as well.  It was a huge season all-around for both teams here in the southland.  Though it ended prematurely for both teams, it does not take away from what these two accomplished during the regular season.  

KERSHAW_TROUT

Perhaps a deep run into October in 2015 ?  Never to early to look ahead…

Tailgating With Drei ( Trying to, Anyways…)

I’m sure by now many of you have turned your attention to the other major sports.  I’m also sure many of you are also huge fans of the pigskin, be it the NFL, college, or both.  I don’t even doubt that many of you enjoy a good tailgate prior to watching your favorite team do battle among the gridiron.  Many of you probably tailgate every game, while a good many of you may do it on occasion.  Many of you probably have traditional recipes  and gameday rituals as well, from dressing up your area with your favorite teams paraphernalia to preparing that day’s main dish based on that day’s opponent, for example, for an NFL game if the opponent we’re the Philadelphia Eagles, your spread could include anything with a bird or Philly Cheese Steaks, among many countless ideas . 

For my most recent tailgate this past Saturday at The Rose Bowl prior to the UCLA-Arizona game, with the U of  A Wildcats in town, I have decided to throw in a Southwest theme ( for Arizona ) along with an Asian influenced theme as well ( A nod to my Asian roots and the heavy Asian-American student population at UCLA….) .  For my Southwest theme, I have prepared a Sonoran Style Chorizo Burger.  Here are the preparation notes, which by the way, was prepped for two people, so the prep may vary.  It’s pretty simple really…

Drei’s Sonoran Style Chorizo Burger

Mix 1 pound of ground beef or pork with some chorizo meat

Add a half to 3/4 packet of chili powder.  I used the New Mexico Style chili powder

Store in your fridge and marinade overnight

Now my notes for my Asian themed bite

Drei’s Coconut Curry Chicken Thighs

For my chicken thighs…

1 can of coconut milk

Approximately 2 tbsps. of coconut vinegar

Curry powder

Coconut flakes

A touch or two of brown sugar

Store in fridge to marinade overnight.

Again, depending on how many are taking part of your tailgate, the amounts and preparations will vary. 

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Gettin’ our tailgate on.  Yeah, preferably we’d like a bigger grill, but hey, our miniature Weber would do just fine.  Hey, our Pet Minion Dave has joined us once again.  Minion Dave has sure got around with us this past year.  He wasn’t quite so mischievous this time around.  Perhaps it was because he wasn’t around his favorite mischievous Uncle Marly Marlz this time…

Marlz_Dave2 Dave and Marlz.  Two of the most mischievous characters you’ll ever encounter at a sporting event…

Lesson’s learned by Drei.  OK, who doesn’t love bacon with their burgers ?  If you must throw some bacon on the grill if cooking with charcoal,  you may want to put some aluminum foil on top of your grill .  When grilling your bacon, always monitor the progress .  You don’t want to cause a grease fire thus possibly burning anything else that may be on your grill.  Also, when grilling the burgers, before placing on the grill, I also discovered it be best to flatten the burgers out as much as possible if anything it not only  reduces cooking time but is also much easier to grill than grilling one big thick burger, per se. 

As for my Coconut Curried Chicken Thighs, they could not have come out any juicer than I could have imagined.  So, how’d the burger turn out ?

SONORA BURGER

Here it is.  My Sonoran Style Chorizo burger, topped with jack cheese, bacon, black fiesta beans, roasted Anaheim Chile, and guacamole.  After a couple of tries, this burger actually turned out allright.  Also , as a side, I added a raspberry blue-cheese spinach salad as well . 

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Getting one last chug in before the main course…

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Minion Dave sure loves all the scenery, highlighted by the San Gabriel Mountains in the distance… 

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Kickin’ it with the lil’ bro Daniel after another UCLA win…

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Minion Dave all happy after UCLA’s 17-7 win over Arizona

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Next home game.  The one time of year Dodger fans throughout L.A. are divided…

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Our pet Minion Dave sure has gotten around this year…

So these are the highlights from Drei’s tailgate and the UCLA/UofA game.  To be honest, it wasn’t one of my best efforts and Drei could have done a few things different, but hey, I still enjoy a good tailgate . Ideally, you should have more than 2 people with you at a tailgate.  Even though you may not try to, with only 2 at a tailgate, you always end up having more than you really need.  Got any tailgate tips you’d like to share ?  Need any tailgate tips and recipes ?  You may want to check out this Pro Football Cookbook .  Planning on hitting the road to see your favorite team ?  Check us out at Stadium Journey for your travel needs, including those for UCLA and USC football.

Next up, the one thing that divides all Dodger fans this time of year. The annual football game between USC vs UCLA…

VICTORYBELL

The Victory Bell.  The prize the two schools play for each year.  The bell has been that nice shade of blue the last couple of years…

 

 

 

 

The Magic of Baseball Among African Americans and a Mini Puig Sighting in Westwood

Another interesting read focuses on the state of the game among African-Americans, this time from MLB.com beat writer Terence Moore, who feels Magic Johnson dispels myths that blacks aren’t into baseball . That, of course, is still debatable. Here’s an excerpt from his latest read…

” Let’s start with Williamsport, Pa., where a totally African-American team from Chicago is competing in the Little League World Series. Not only that, the star of the whole event so far is a 13-year-old Philadelphia girl, Mo’ne Davis, who throws a baffling slider when she isn’t frustrating hitters with 70 mph fastballs. “

Speaking of Mo’ne Davis

Perhaps we will see Mo’ne in the bigs some day ? I really hope so. Baseball integrated players of all colors , why not integrate the two genders ? If she has the ability to hurl a 95 MPH fastball in 10 years or prior, I say, Why Not ? In the meantime, Mo’ne has issued a pitchoff challenge to Clayton Kershaw .

Yasiel or Kobe ?

YasielBabies_dtixz336_5ic8jiwb

Perhaps this piece on Yasiel Puig may greatly influence your decision on what to name your newborn child, assuming it’s a boy. You will also be glad to know that the name Kobe increased in popularity in 1997 after some HS kid named Kobe was thrust right into the spotlight of another storied L.A. franchise…

KOBE This will be Kobe’s 19th season donning the Purple and Gold. At 35, Kobe says in basketball years he is 70 . I’d say that’s a good way of analyzing any professional athlete north of 30. Even at 70 basketball years, I think most teams would still clamor for your service Kobe …

Mini Puig Sighting in Westwood

For those of you who have followed my past Mini Puig posts, today, the Mini one pays a visit to the home of The Sons of Westwood, where he pays homage to another great who donned not only the Dodger Blue but also the Blue and Gold..

Puig_Jackie Paying homage to Jackie Robinson at the UCLA Athletics Hall of Fame .

Puig_VictoryBell Oh yeah. Gotta love the sight of The Victory Bell in Bruin Blue, 2 years in a row !!! Looks like our Mini Puig is calling for an 8-Clap !!! It’s almost that time of year folks where we do double-duty !!!

hundley With Brett Hundley during the Beat SC bonfire back in November. Mr. Heisman ? This is going to be a big year for The Mighty Bruins. I’ll have to get Mini Puig to pose with you at the next Beat SC bonfire…