Crosstown rivalry

The hype surrounding the USC-UCLA basketball rivalry proved legit today, as the Trojans upset the Bruins 72-63 at Pauley Pavilion. For weeks we've been hearing about the matchup between Kevin Love and OJ Mayo, but it didn't necessarily come down to them. Instead, USC's other top freshman Davon Jefferson powered his way to 25 points and had his best game of the season.

It was also USC's best game of the season, as the Trojans showed they can be as good as everyone thinks they're supposed to be. USC had gotten off to a disappointing start in Pac-10 play, with three straight losses to Cal, Stanford, and Washington State. Then coach Tim Floyd had his team practice outside on the asphalt courts on Figueroa next to PSX on campus. That move appears to have given the Trojans their "eye of the tiger" back, and USC has played inspired basketball in wins over Washington and UCLA. The Pac-10 is ridiculously deep this year, but USC has repositioned itself as an elite team in the conference.

January 19, 2008 7:42 PM • Native Intelligence • Email the editor

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