Tag Archives: trojans

Traditions of Football Season

By Greg Lennon

One of the centerpieces of any USC student’s college experience is that surreal part of the Fall semester that is football season.  New students quickly learn to respect and worship the history and tradition surrounding the illustrious Trojan football program.   For over a century, the school has built a pigskin culture based on excellence, tradition, and the glory that is game day.

For many, the pregame tailgates are almost as important as the game itself.  Whether you’re a hardcore alum who arrives on campus at 5:00am to set up the perfect tailgate, or just a casual fan, the pregame is a vital component to the Trojan game day experience.  Walking onto campus on any game day, no matter the opponent, you will find almost every inch of SC decked out in Cardinal and Gold.  When the time comes, the Trojan faithful head south to the Coliseum, pouring out of campus, and making sure to kick the trusty game day flag poles for good luck.

On the way, vendors sell essentials like bottled water, bootleg merchandise, and victory dogs (bacon wrapped hot dogs), the fuel of any tailgater.  Passing religious orators and ticket scalpers, the crowd makes its way into the coliseum, bottlenecked into the student section.  For most games, the student section feels like a pressure cooker; stacked like sardines into cramped seats, all the while the sun beating down.  And yet watching football from the student section can be one of the most surreal experiences; the entirety of the crowd moving and reacting as one while the two teams wage war on the field below.  Between chanting the SoCal spell-out, fighting on in unison with the song girls, or dancing to any number of the traditional cheers, the student section keeps things rowdy all game long.

For many so-called fans, halftime is a chance to escape the heat of the coliseum and return home to watch the remainder of the game from the comfort of air conditioning.  For the more faithful fans, the second half is a time to watch the team inflict its finishing blows to the visitor (or vice versa), as well as hope to catch a 4th quarter t-shirt launched into the crowd.  For the Trojan Faithful, game day is a borderline religious experience, and no matter the score, we never lose a tailgate.

Greg is a junior majoring in International Relations, with an emphasis in International Politics in Security Studies. As a member of USC’s NROTC program, he will graduate as an officer in the US Navy, where he will serve for several years. Born and raised in Northern California, Greg enjoys running, hiking, and swimming on the weekends.

Alaskan Adventure

By Andrew Hemberger

We arrived in Anchorage around 2:00 AM, exchanging soft California sun for a biting cold. With the airport deserted and snow piled up outside of the clear glass doors of the warm airport sanctuary, we decided to spend the first night of our spring break sleeping at baggage claim. We would have 7 more days to camp and journey into the Artic and blistering cold of northern Alaska, so we would enjoy warmth while we still could.

Curled up in our sleeping bags constant noise blared through loudspeakers “PLEASE DON’T LEAVE BAGGAGE UNATTENDED.” Around 5am, and after a few restless hours of sleep Daniel suggested we start on the road. The Hertz rent-a-car was just opening up as a sleepy attendant dressed in the signature yellow and black vest wiped sleep from his eyes.

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“Laghe Raho!” with Trojan Cricket Club

By Audrey Moore

“What a shot, yaarSHABASH!”  The batting team roars with excitement, cheering on the teammate who just successfully smashed our taped tennis ball outside of Cromwell and into Brittingham Field.  Another six runs are added to the score.  Immediately, I check my camera and scroll through the photos to make sure I got a good shot of the small white ball whirling past the bleachers; content, I kneel back down in the dugout and poise myself for another set of cricketing clicks.  This is the focus of my life for the next six hours: it’s Friday Night Lights, and there’s no place I’d rather be.

In fact, this is my life every Friday night.  From 6:00pm until midnight, I trek from my nearby apartment to the Cromwell Track and Field Stadium to manage our Trojan Cricket Club’s Cromwell Premier League (CPL) tournament and photograph our players.  Now as the acting club President, it’s amazing to believe that just over a year ago I couldn’t even describe the rules of cricket, let alone partake in this fun, competitive pastime.

I owe that to USC.

Given that USC has the highest percentage of international students enrolled in the world, it’s no surprise that some of the first friends I met here came from countries far outside the U.S.  In my freshman year, the International Residential College toured me around Chinatown for the Mid-Autumn Festival, where I tried my first moon cake (red bean is definitely the best!) and ogled over traditional dragon dances.  My Kenyan choir friend taught me how to play the congas after a rehearsal session at the Caruso Catholic Center.  And the Indian graduate students who worked in our dining hall introduced me to cricket.

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