This past weekend was packed with so much excitement, I must give you an insider’s look into what really is a USC Football experience: the Homecoming Football Game, USC vs. Stanford. USC was filled with spirit beginning at 5:00 AM with ESPN College Gameday. Students committed to waking up early to show their Trojan Pride on national television and slowly the tailgates started to set up. After a quick nap, the tailgating was in full swing by noon.
Of all the football games I have attended, this past Saturday’s tailgates had some of the best food I have ever been offered. I tried tacos, burgers, hot dogs, pizza, and even some roast chicken. Heading to the sold-out Coliseum too longer than expected given the much larger volume of students, alumni, and fans flocking to see the highly anticipated USC vs. Stanford match-up. Stanford was the favorite to win, but as a proud Trojan, we knew we could give them a run for their money.
During the game, perhaps one of the best USC experiences is standing with the Trojan student body cheering with the rest of the undergraduate student body. When USC scored, the student section would go nuts. Excitement and chaos followed, but all in the spirit of fun! USC remained in the lead going into half-time, though Stanford was hot on our heels. I could feel everyone’s anticipation, sensing we a victory. With less than a minute in the game, the score was tied and USC was charging down the field. I could barely hear the chants of “Fight On” over the roar from the student section. The band was in full swing, playing fight song after fight song, further energizing the crowd. We reach the 30 yard line and decide to go for the field goal.
Of the thousands of students watching the kicker send the ball towards the field goal posts, approximately 100% of them held their breath. I know I did. The ball crossed the threshold and us in the student section, well, lost it. We hugged, screamed, high-fived, low-fived, chest-bumped, and danced in celebration. But the game was not over. We were 19 seconds from a Trojan upset 3 years overdue, and we kicked off down the field. The Stanford receiver caught the ball, dodged a tackle, broke a tackle, side-stepped, and got clobbered by a Trojan player. The horn sounded, declaring our win, and the student section emptied. Not to the exit for post-game celebration, but onto the field! No security guard was getting in the way of the hordes of students ecstatic over this triumph! Needless to say, I have hardly ever felt more proud to be a USC Trojan. We are always relevant and always Fighting On. To my USC friends, rushing the field was completely surreal. To Stanford, TIMBER!