Randall Goforth, left, tackles Arizona wide receiver Austin Hill. (Jason Redmond / Associated…)
Posts on a phony Twitter account unhinged Jim Mora on Tuesday.
The UCLA coach was angry that a person portraying himself or herself to be freshman safety Randall Goforth directed several disparaging posts at USC receiver Robert Woods.
The account has been suspended, but Mora was looking for more.
"I think they are the lowest form of life," he said of the culprit, who had not been identified. "If you portray yourself as an 18-year old young man … trying to stir it up by attributing comments to him that are not his, I think you ought to go to jail."
"Bring his … out here," Mora said. "He won't make it very far with this team. He's a coward. That's what a coward does. I challenge that guy to come out here, whoever he is. He won't. The guy's a coward."
Goforth said he did not have a Twitter account.
"It was shocking," Goforth said. "My teammates got my back. Older guys came and talked to me. They let me know what is going on. They told me to brush it off and focus on this weekend's game and my schoolwork."
Goforth said he has never met Woods
"I'm just a freshman, I have no reason to be talking," Goforth said. "I have tremendous respect for all those guys at USC. I'm trying to stay in my place and do my job."
Woods believed the tweets were real, and he had teammate Marqise Lee had replied.
Mora reached out to USC Coach Lane Kiffin on Monday night.
"I immediately called Marqise and Robert to make sure that they knew," Kiffin said. "I just said, 'Make sure you're not responding at that point, because you're responding to someone who you don't think it is.'"
Woods regretted his part.
"Even if it wasn't a fake, we shouldn't have responded and retaliated," Woods said. "That has nothing do with ASU."
USC plays Arizona State at the Coliseum on Saturday. USC and UCLA play at the Rose Bowl on Nov. 17.
"Lane and I go way back," Mora said. "There is no animosity between us. I felt like it was important to let him know this wasn't coming from our guy. If he felt like it, I wanted him to let his guys know that they were fighting with a guy that's innocent."
Receiver Darius Bell returned to practice Tuesday. He was held out of Saturday's game after oversleeping and missing practice Thursday.
Bell, who missed two games with a broken rib and separated shoulder, is expected to play Saturday against Washington State. Bell has seven receptions for 143 yards and is averaging a team-high 20.4 yards per catch.
UCLA and USC are expected to play at either 5 p.m. on Channel 7 or noon on Channel 11, according to a UCLA spokesman…. UCLA freshman cornerback Marcus Rios returned to practice Tuesday but was wearing a red no-contact jersey. Rios underwent a sinus procedure two weeks ago to relieve migraine headaches.
Times staff writer Gary Klein contributed to this report.