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UCLA – USC, The Only Kind of Football in LA

By Scott McCourtney



There's a reason there isn't an NFL team in Los Angeles: The UCLA, USC rivalry is all you need. (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
There's a reason there isn't an NFL team in Los Angeles: The UCLA, USC rivalry is all you need. (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)


There are two kinds of football in Los Angeles: UCLA and USC.

Yes there are big high school programs but this is not Texas. Since the 1930s if you grew up in LA, you had to pick a side. You normally picked the side your parents were on but when it came time to going to college sometimes you went against your parents and went to the other. At one time or another in any boy or girl’s life they have chosen a side, and cheered for only that team. In the second largest city in the United States, you're either true blue or you're cardinal and gold when it comes to pigskin.

Make no mistake, this isn't like that rivalry up in Northern California between Cal and Stanford.  These two teams battle not just for home city bragging rights but for Pac-12 Championships and National Championships.The Bruins and Trojans have shared in ¾ of all conference titles since the formation of the Athletic Association of Western Universities in 1959.

USC has won 17 championships outright, shared eight and gone to the Rose Bowl or BCS bowl 21 times. UCLA has won six championships outright, shared five and gone to the Rose Bowl eight times. The schools have shared the championship between them three times.

This battle transcends into all sports and even academics. Both schools claim to have better film departments and both claim to have better medical schools. At one point, an award called the Gauntlet that was a metal armored glove was given to each school who won more titles in a given year for athletics. In the end, if you are at the Rose Bowl or the Coliseum and you are watching these teams fight and you are in for a treat.