Cross-Town Rivals Face Off Tomorrow

"Burn Joe, Burn!"
"Burn Joe, Burn!"

The Bruins of UCLA and the Trojans of USC will be competing on the football field tomorrow night. The Los Angeles Universities have a long-standing rivalry that is important to a lot of the city’s residents. Personally, I’m not really interested in the sport or who wins. Maybe I should be since the company I work for is highly affiliated with USC. In spite of not being a fan, I somehow ended up at The Trojans’ big pep rally, called Conquest, last weekend. (I was solely there to see the closing band, OK Go).

The event, held on the USC campus, was a big deal complete with a ferris wheel, food trucks, Jamie Kennedy introducing a variety of the school’s sports teams and coaches, and a very impressive fireworks display. Most of the “Yay Team!” (or “Fight On!” as they say at USC) stuff was lost on me, but I did thoroughly enjoy The Trojan Marching Band, otherwise known as The Spirit of Troy. They are excellent and their rendition of Fleetwood Mac’s “Tusk” was a huge treat.

The Spirt of Troy
The Spirt of Troy

It appeared that the highlight of the night for the students and alumni was the burning of Joe Bruin, UCLA’s mascot bear. There were chants of “Burn, Joe, burn!” It can only make me wonder what they light on fire at UCLA. Hopefully, it’s not what we all think of when we hear USC’s mascot because the smell of burning rubber is rather unpleasant.

There have been shenanigans this week with UCLA’s Bruin statue getting painted with Trojan cardinal and gold. So much for sportsmanship.

Are you into the big game and if so, who are you rooting for? I really hope your team wins.

4 thoughts on “Cross-Town Rivals Face Off Tomorrow”

  1. Jodi, the USC marching band has been subjecting us all to “Tusk” for decades now…they played on the original record. The USC band can only handle learning that and “Conquest,” the fight song that makes you want to slit your wrists so you don’t have to hear it any more.

    Go Bruins!

  2. I don’t really have a horse in this race, but I would like to point out that the USC kids sit in front of Tommy Trojan in shifts before the big game. They also tape him up. The result is pretty funny looking, but it does effectively prevent UCLA pranksters from doing something like, I don’t know, throwing blue and gold paint on the school’s mascot…

  3. You aren’t into the sport yet you are in charge of covering the biggest rivalry in the city? This tells me two things. One, you are not from Los Angeles and two, you should not be covering this event. That is all.


  4. Queequeg, actually, UCLA students got to Tommy a few years ago. UCLA is also supposed to have a volunteer student security group watching the Bruin Bear, but they released a statement after the vandalism that they decided not to guard it 24 hours this year. There is also a tarp put up over the statue that the (presumably) USC folks tore down before painting it.

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