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Westsider Rider

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Less than two weeks to go

Over the weekend the talks really started heating up between myself and my USC friends. I got so fired up I was hoping the game would be played tomorrow. For myself, this game means so much more than what's already on the line a win at the Rose Bowl, a strong finish to the season and a springboard into the 2007 campaign. For me its about respect, or lack thereof any team besides USC gets out here. Granted this doesn't apply to their real fans but real USC fans are few and far between. A better example in describing them to the Michigan fans who don't deal with USC that often it's like the arrogance of Notre Dame fans combined with the obnoxiousness of Ohio State fans (although not quite as much).

I've had conversations with numerous USC fans this year that have no idea what goes on in other parts of the country besides USC. I even had one ask me if Michigan was going to a bowl game. It's so infuriating when I have to deal with these type of people. This is the game I've wanted since the 04 Rose Bowl because I wanted another shot at USC. My dislike for them has dropped somewhat since they lost to Texas and and some of the people jumped off the bandwagon but it's still there. A while back I said I would give my brother a guest blog post and here it is, sort of. This is his writing about why he hates USC, it might have been either right before or after last year's Rose Bowl vs. Texas.

My Top 5 Reasons for Hating USC Fans

5. Bandwagon Fans. This is low on my list, because I know that there will always be bandwagon fans in any sport at many places in America. But for some reason, it just seems that there are a lot more bandwagon fans here in Southern California. The Anaheim Angels, the Anaheim Ducks, and the Los Angeles Lakers. You don't see bandwagon fans for the Boston Red Sox who never won a championship until very recently. They'd still pack the stands. And you don't see many bandwagon fans for Alabama. Even before there good year this year, you'd still see them go to the games. It's just annoying to be into a sport, and all of a sudden some other fan being like, "I've been a fan forever." When they never said anything before.

4. Media on their Nuts. I give the USC team a lot of respect for the run they've been on. I dont' hate the players too much, because all they do is go out and win ball games. However, it is because the USC team wins that there are so many god awful fans. Therefore, what has happened within the last year is that the American Media has been all over USC's nuts. For instance, the whole "Greatest of all time". You've got to be kidding me. They had this 2005 USC football team (that I don't think is as good as the 2003 and 2004 teams.) completely destroying past national championship teams: 1991 Washington, 1994 Penn State, , 1995 Nebraska, 1999 Florida State, 2001 Miami, 2002 Ohio State, and my beloved 1997 Michigan Wolverines. I'm sure that this USC team may have beaten some of these teams, but come on, "the best ever". The Media needs to get off its knees and clean its shins off after being on the ground that long.

3. Lack of Knowledge. Time and time again, I've tried to talk to USC fans about other teams in college football and other college football players, and they have no idea about anything. All they know is Reggie Bush, Lendale White, and Matt Leinart. Seems like many of em don't even know that Marcus Allen and Keyshawn Johnson went to USC too. And if you're lucky, they might know a little bit about the Pac-10 like Maurice Drew, or if the person is an average fan, someone like Haloti Ngata. They never talk about the SEC, ACC, Big XII, Big Ten, or Big East. It would be quite a day to talk to a USC fan about Greg Jennings from Western Michigan, or someone like Jared Zabransky from Boise St. who are big name players from small conferences. You're not a fan of a sport if you only know your own team or conference, it's about knowing the entire sport as well.

2. Arrogance. This was a hard choice because I was really thinking about putting this first. However, I put arrogance at number 2. You may believe that arrogance and respect are the same, but I find it to be different. I find arrogance to have too much confidence internally on one's team, but in regards to respect, it is disrespect externally towards other teams. For the last few years all you can hear is, "We have Reggie Bush and Matt Leinart, nobody can touch us." It's as if people here believed that the USC team was college football. No player, coach, or team is bigger than college football no matter how good. And it seems that people forget how terrible USC was prior to the 2002-2003 season. They were awful missing out on bowl games and having subpar to terrible records. And yet, all you see now is the present where USC fans only see their own team and nobody else, as if USC's supposed to win. Nobody's supposed to win, you're supposed to earn it.

1. Respect My number one reason for hating USC fans is respect. This is different, because it isn't USC fans having too much respect for their team, it's having no respect for other teams. They disrespect every other team, it just makes me sick. "Texas sucks, they only have Vince Young, they're gonna get their asses whooped." I remember hearing that a number of times. Or "who else do they have than Vince Young, nobody." Or random people talking shit on Michigan football or other teams from other conferences. Michigan had a down year last year, but I do believe Michigan has had a winning record for over 20 years. And still going to bowl games too. Most real college football fans remember USC pre-Pete Carroll. Yes, they were that bad. Damn did it feel good to watch that game, and watch it over and over again on TiVo. It seems that nobody believes that any other team has a chance, as if every other team is mediocre even if they have good records and very good players. As a Michigan fan, but also a college football fan as well, every week I have respect for every team we face. I had respect for Northern Illinois with Garrett Wolfe and Sam Hurd. I had respect for Notre Dame with Brady Quinn and Darius Walker. I have respect for every team that we face because I know that on any given Saturday, an upset occurs, which is what makes college football so great. Respect, I guess it's a word they don't teach to USC fans. All they teach them is not to have any.

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