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THE RIVALRY / No. 2 USC 47, UCLA 22 | NOTES

Bruins Say Sooners Would Beat Trojans

November 23, 2003|Bill Plaschke, Gary Klein and Mike DiGiovanna | Times Staff Writers

As players who have competed against both Oklahoma and USC this season, the UCLA Bruins are uniquely qualified to comment on the outcome of a potential national championship game involving the two teams.

"I think Oklahoma would win," said Dave Ball. "I'm not saying that because I'm a UCLA guy. And I'm not putting [the Trojans] down, they're an awesome team that should be playing for a national championship.

"But we played Oklahoma and they're a little different. They're like a junior NFL team. They're A-plus. While USC is like a solid A."

His brother Mat Ball agreed, saying he didn't think USC was as talented as Oklahoma: "I don't think so, but they're right up there. I'd go with Oklahoma, that's what I'm saying."

Then there was Matt Clark, who said, "USC's running game is better than Oklahoma but, as a whole, Oklahoma is a better team."

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Norm Chow, USC's offensive coordinator, said Saturday that he did not receive a direct apology from a Brigham Young University vice president who made a comment about Chinese laborers during a meeting with BYU football coaches in 1999.

Fred Skousen, advancement vice president for athletics at BYU, told coaches a new indoor football facility would be built, then reportedly added, "And we've got all the Chinese lined up ready to go to work."

Chow, who is of Chinese and Hawaiian descent, was sitting in the front row of the 1999 meeting, he told the Denver Post, which first reported the incident Friday.

In a written statement released Friday to the Deseret Morning News, Skousen said, "I made a comment without thinking. Afterwards, I realized it was offensive and immediately distributed a written apology to all who were in attendance."

Chow left BYU to coach at North Carolina State in 2000. He came to USC in 2001.

Chow said he was never contacted directly by Skousen

"It was a form letter to everybody in the department," Chow said after USC defeated UCLA, 47-22.

Chow said he will speak today with Arizona Athletic Director Jim Livengood about the school's head coaching position.

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USC suffered two significant losses when starting right guard John Drake and backup quarterback John David Booty were injured.

Drake, a junior who transferred from Long Beach City College, broke his right ankle and is out for the season. He is scheduled for surgery today.

Booty, a freshman, broke his left wrist when he was sacked by Dave Ball. Booty is expected to sit out at least six weeks.

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Washington probably knocked Washington State out of the Rose Bowl with Saturday's 27-19 upset of the Cougars, and that may knock UCLA completely out of the bowl picture.

If USC beats Oregon State on Dec. 6, then Oregon State, Washington and UCLA would finish in a three-way tie for fifth place in the Pacific 10 Conference.

Assuming USC goes to the Sugar Bowl and the Rose Bowl takes a BCS-eligible team from outside the Pac-10, Washington State would go to the Holiday Bowl, and Oregon and California would fill the conference's Sun Bowl and Insight bowl slots.

The Las Vegas Bowl, which has rights to the fifth-place team in the Pac-10, and the Silicon Valley Classic, which can take the sixth-place team, would then choose among Oregon State, Washington and UCLA to fill two slots.

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Times Wire Services contributed to this report.

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