What has the Morton family meant to USC football?
Let us count the yards.
Johnnie Morton--the Detroit Lion receiver best remembered for catching the winning touchdown pass from Todd Marinovich with 16 seconds left in the Trojans' last victory over UCLA in 1990--is USC's all-time leading receiver in yards with 3,201.
Chad Morton--who would like nothing more than to put a Morton bookend to UCLA's eight-year winning streak with a game-winning touchdown run Saturday--ranks 10th on the USC rushing list with 2,284 yards, and needs 86 more to become only USC's third 1,000-yard rusher of the decade.
Tack on Johnnie's 159 yards in kickoff returns for a total of 3,360 yards for big brother.
Throw in Chad's 402 yards on kickoff returns, 376 more on punt returns, 256 yards receiving and another 32 on interception returns--he played defensive back for two seasons--and you have 3,350 yards with two games left in little brother's career.
Grand total for the Mortons: 6,710 yards and counting.
That's about a season and a half's worth of total offense for an entire team.
"That's considerable," USC Coach Paul Hackett said. "That's impressive."
Care to count the touchdowns?
Johnnie had 23, all receiving.
Chad, with two games left in his career, has 21 rushing--a team-leading 12 this season--one receiving, and one on a 98-yard kickoff return against Purdue last season.
Now for the really hard math:
Try to count how many practices the Mortons' parents, Johnnie Sr. and Katsuko, have attended during their sons' USC careers.
They are such regulars, it's almost news if they miss one.
Through three coaches--Larry Smith, John Robinson and Paul Hackett--the Mortons have rarely been absent during Johnnie's and Chad's careers.
Since both were redshirted, that's 10 seasons.
The Trojans played 115 regular-season games in that time. Multiply that by the three practices a week the Mortons usually watch--they don't go to Sunday's light practice or Friday's walk-through. That's 345.
Add 10 years of training camps, eight years of spring practices and the extra preparation for six bowl games, and the Mortons easily might have attended in the neighborhood of 700 practices.
"Coach [Ken] O'Brien teases me all the time," Chad said. "He'll say, 'Well, gee, I never expected your parents to come out today.' Or, 'Look who's here for the first time!' "
Woe to the player who nearly bowls into Katsuko on the sideline.
"Hey! Don't push him into my mom!" Chad yelled at some teammates the other day, only half teasing. "You all right, Mom?
"I have to protect her from these guys," he said. "They tend to get crazy once in a while."
All things considered, though, Chad has been glad to have his parents there.
"It's something very special to me," he said. "They're very supportive. They could easily be doing something else, but they elect to come out here and watch us. They're always coaching me too, at the same time.
"It's not easy, because I always tell people, 'They'll get after you--probably before the coaches.'
"Other people, their parents are in another city or across the U.S. I'm very fortunate to be able to see them every day. I'm very thankful for that."
USC should be thankful for all the yards and touchdowns.
The Trojans haven't been the only beneficiary.
Another son, Eric, was a wide receiver at Dartmouth, and a half-brother, Michael Morton, played at Nevada Las Vegas from 1978-81 and ranks third on UNLV's rushing list.
Only question is, what are the Mortons going to do next year?
"We have no life. We're doomed," Johnnie Sr. said.
There was talk about renting an apartment near Detroit to be closer to Johnnie during football season.
"No, no, no," Katsuko said. "They don't let you go to practice there. I told Johnnie we should adopt one of the other [USC] kids--not adopt, but be here for moral support."
With the track record the Mortons have, volunteers might be lining up now.
(BEGIN TEXT OF INFOBOX / INFOGRAPHIC)
JOHNNIE MORTON AT USC
1990: 15 receptions, 263 yards, 17.5 avg., 3 TDs. Team record: 8-4-1
1991: 49 catches, 662 yards, 13.5 avg., 0 TDs. Tam record: 3-8
1992: 49 catches, 756 yards, 15.4 avg., 6 TDs. Team record: 6-5-1
1993: 88 catches, 1,520 yards, 17.3 avg., 14 TDs. Team record: 8-5
No. Player: Catches
1. Johnnie Morton: 201
2. Keyshawn Johnson: 168
3. John Jackson: 163
4. R. Jay Soward: 155
5. Billy Miller: 125
6. Erik Affholter: 123
7. Hank Norman: 113
8. Gary Wellman: 111
9. Jeff Simmons: 106
10. Joe Cormier: 105
CHAD MORTON AT USC
1996: 26 carries, 171 yards, 6.6 avg., 2 TDs. Team record: 6-6
1997: 30 carries, 214 yards, 7.1 avg., 1 TDs. Team record: 6-5
1998: 199 carries, 985 yards, 4.9 avg., 6 TDs. Team record: 8-5
1999: 208 carries, 914 yards, 4.4 avg., 12 TDs. Team record: 4-6
No. Player: Yards
1. Charles White: 6,245
2. Marcus Allen: 4,810
3. Anthony Davis: 3,724
4. Ricky Bell: 3,689
5. O.J. Simpson: 3,423
6. Mike Garrett: 3,221
7. Fred Crutcher: 2,815
8. Ricky Ervins: 2,337
9. Clarence Davis: 2,323
10. Chad Morton*: 2,284
USC vs. UCLA: The 1950s
Year Winner, score
1950 UCLA, 39-0
1951 UCLA, 21-7
1952 USC, 14-12
1953 UCLA, 13-0
1954 UCLA, 34-0
1955 UCLA, 17-7
1956 USC, 10-7
1957 UCLA, 20-9
1958 Tie, 15-15
*1959 UCLA, 10-3
*USC came into the game undefeated (8-0) and ranked fourth in the nation before losing to the Bruins, who came into the game with a record of 3-3-1.
USC vs. UCLA
12:30 p.m., Channel 7