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1992: Barnes to JJ

First of all great work everyone for getting Morgan Center to cave and back away from making a horrible mistake. It's a small victory. But it may just for3shadow big things for this upcoming football season should Dorrell fail to win the Pac-10 championship. Once again it is clear those guys are reading, listening to the discussion here on BN. It is a good sign if you are a Bruin football fan.

Obviously anything connected to a scandal tainted Trojan football program doesn't belong anywhere related to UCLA athletics. That takes me to the main purpose of this post. I really enjoyed reading the thread from last night's post featuring the clips from 1996 game. I had a feeling that thread was going to take off. So I had already planned to do a follow post tonight. It looks like jtthirtyfour already beat me to the punch by linking to the video of yet another incredibly special Southern Cal-UCLA, which I was lucky to watch in person in 1992.

Before we get to the video let me see if I can set the table for you. 1992-93 was my sophomore year in Westwood. We were coming off a 9-3 season (which included a win over Southern Cal that ended a 4 game winless streak in that series). Everyone was riding high after the end of that season until Tommy Maddox decided to go pro after his sophomore year in college (whole another story). That season got off to a rough start from the get go when Wayne Cook took a cheap shot (kind of like the shot BO took in the Arizona game) in the first game against Cal State Fullerton (I think their football program folded after that season) and was out for rest of the season. The Bruins won the following two games against BYU and San Diego State, but then everything fell apart as we were subjected to watching a typically vanilla and mediocre Donahue offense languish under two of the worst quarterbacks in the history of UCLA football: Ryan Fien and Rob Walker.

I think the most humiliating moment of that season came against Arizona. Bruins were getting shut out. There were just seconds left in the game and we had some kind of NCAA record scoring streak on the line. So what Donahue did was run a play to make sure we get in FG range, just so that we could kick a FG and preserve the scoring streak. It was pathetic (very Dorrellian actually). And what was hilarious that the scoring streak ended later in the year when the Bruins got shut out by ASU. Anyways there wasn't much going for the Bruins that season. Until this walk-on QB from Santa Barbara took over. Under Barnes we stopped a 5 game losing streak during homecoming against the Beavers. And then the following week we pulled off a tough road win against Oregon.

So heading into the Southern Cal game I think the Bruins had a very mediocre 5-5 record (again very Dorrelian) while the Trojans were coming with a record of 6-2-1. We had a good defense with Donnie Edwards, Jamir Miller, Othello Henderson, Carlton Grey, Marvin Goodwin leading the way. But the Trojies had that Rob and Meshawn Johnson combination going for them. They were clear cut favorites heading into that game.

I remember heading into the Rose Bowl with my buddies and we were not feeling all that great. None of us had any idea what was about to unfold next:

Still to this day I can remember the moment right before Barnes connected with JJ. Right before the snap a buddy of mine pointed towards Barnes's hand signal to JJ and blurted out, "here comes the slant!" By the time JJ was done dragging a Trojie into the end zone we ended up 10 rows in front of where we were sitting (between tunnels 6 and 7). Student section was a mosh pit. It was bedlam. And it was bedlam until Nikosi Littleton finally batted that Robo's pass away.

The lesson from that game: no matter what the record and outlook of a season is, a UCLA football program should never concede an inch to those losers from cross town. And no matter what we should always head into that game with expectation of victory. Just yet another reason why so many of us were upset when we saw UCLA fans celebrating a "true moral victory" against those losers couple of years ago.

Watch those Barnes to JJ highlights. Keep them in mind when we head into that last regular season game next year. If you are a true Bruin no matter what you should always expect a win in this game.

Anyways. As I have said before this game is something special and to us lot more than a football game. It is pretty apparent from all of our comments each and everyone of us has specific memories connected to each of these games.

So once again I'd like to hear where were you  when Bruins were JJ was dragging that hapless and pathetic Trojie into the endzone like a little rag doll?