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News & Notes From The Passion Bucket

Let’s start with a little potpourri of football notes this am. As bhbruin already diaried looks like we are going to see ketchup and mustard on December 6th:

According to Tracy Pierson of, Neuheisel and Trojan coach Pete Carroll have agreed to have each team wear home uniforms when the two rivals meet on Dec. 6 at the Rose Bowl.

Before 1982, the teams had a tradition: Both teams would wear their home uniforms. UCLA would don its home blue jerseys and USC would wear its home red. But in that year, the NCAA ruled that the visiting team must wear away uniforms. Since then, the visiting team has worn white to avoid a penalty and a forfeited time-out in the first half.

Neuheisel and Carroll have reportedly agreed that the home team will take a time-out to offset the one the visitors must forfeit. The penalty will be declined. The agreement is said to be set to last as long as Neuheisel and Carroll remain coaches of the respective schools.
As I said back in May of 2006 this is an excellent idea. Yes, PC had approached KD almost couple of years ago with the same idea. But KD couldn’t find a way to get it done. Enter CRN and his sense of imagination and vision of how to promote our program, voila, it gets taken care of.

This is exciting in so many ways. I have always believed this is the fiercest and most unique rivalry not just in college football but in American sports.

Photo(shop) Credit: AndersonMBA2007

Yeap. There is nothing like it. And that notion will be only reinforced when we see the color contrast between our blue and gold and their ketchup & mustard in HD in that December Saturday at the Rose Bowl. It will be glorious.

Moving on as Raisin notes we have a new special teams coach. He is Frank Gansz Jr., the ST coach from Ravens who comes to Westwood with loads of NFL experience:
"Frank is an outstanding addition to our staff," said Neuheisel. "Any time you have the opportunity to hire someone who is considered among the best at what he does, you have to take advantage of it. Frank will be a tremendous asset to our special teams."

Gansz, who has an extensive background at the professional and collegiate levels, was the special teams coordinator for the Ravens in 2006 and 2007, coaching with Neuheisel. In 2007, the Ravens placed ninth in the NFL in punt returns (9.7 yards) and 10th in the league in kickoff returns (23.5). In addition, place kicker Matt Stover made 27 of 32 field goals and all 26 PATs. His 27 field goals tied for 10th in the league.
I am not sure if we have ever had a ST coach who had this kind of experience in … coaching special teams. I still cringe remembering how we had a MWC level LBer coach leading our special teams. Oh well those days are gone.

Welcome to Westwood Coach Ganz.

Speaking of welcoming to Westwood our guys will have to make room for one more QB in this year's spring practice:
UCLA added to its quarterback competition Wednesday after the school learned junior college transfer Kevin Craft will take part in spring practice.

Previously, UCLA thought Craft, who transferred to Mt.San Antonio College in Walnut from San Diego State last summer, would have to wait to enroll until the summer because of NCAA transfer rules.

However, because Craft already has his associate's degree, he can enroll in April and participate in spring practice, and compete with seniors Ben Olson and Patrick Cowan for the starting spot.

"It's great for me, and I'm excited about that," Craft said. "I'm glad I can get into school and start the whole transition and get into spring ball. I think that will be fun. It definitely helps being able to go through spring ball.

"I'm fired up. I'm glad everything worked out."

The 6-foot-5, 210-pound Craft completed 313 of 511passes (61.3 percent) for 4,231 yards, 44 touchdowns and 10 interceptions for Mt.SAC last season.
It will be great to have the CA Juco player of the year in the program so early. Competition only bodes well for rest of our QBs. It will make the whole team better.

Lastly, since we were on spring practice, dates were announced earlier this week. Get the details over here. For those of you who are going to be lucky enough to check it out, please remember rest of us who are stuck thousands of miles away. We will always appreciate if there is any way you can manage to share with us a little taste of spring football via pictures, blog posts, whatever you can offer up here on BN.