Morning Buzz

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Cal completed a ho-hum 7-6 season with its loss to Texas in the Holiday Bowl last night. And despite the mediocrity there is no pressure on Bears coach Jeff Tedford. That illustrates our long-held theory: Cal is Cal. On the other hand, Tedford did beat USC . . . in 2003.

Ray Chavez/Oakland Tribune
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Basketball Analysis

Here’s my quick look at the USC basketball team on the eve of Pac-12 play.
Starting lineup: G Alexis Moore (5.8 ppg, 1.6 apg), G Maurice Jones (14.9 ppg, 3.8 apg), G Byron Wesley (6.4 ppg, 4.5 rpg), F Dewayne Dedmon (7.0 ppg, 5.5 rpg), F Aaron Fuller(11.9 ppg, 6.8 rpg).
Best victories: South Carolina, TCU.
Worst losses: Cal Poly San Luis Obispo.
Team’s strengths: USC’s defense can keep it in any game and point guard Maurice Jones is a reliable presence with the ball. There is a lot of potential with first-year players Moore, Wesley and Dedmon in key roles.
Team’s weaknesses: It often is a challenge for the Trojans to muster 50 points and Jones is about the only consistent scorer on the team. Only two of the 10 players to see action this minute stepped on the court last year.
Injury report: G Jio Fontan (knee), F Curtis Washington (labrum).

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Pac-12 v. Big 10

The conferences new alliance announced today seems a bit tired to me. Mainly because I don’t really see many dynamic matchups. Other than playing Michigan in Ann Arbor, USC’s pretty much already toured the Big Ten.
And who wants an Oregon-Wisconsin regular-season game and then rematch in the Rose Bowl? Or USC- Penn State? Or anyone versus Ohio State? Yuck.
An alliance with the Big 12 might have been more fun (USC vs. Texas, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State). But it would not make the same amount of money. And that is king in Larry Scott’s world.

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USC v. UCLA

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Is Norm Chow going to end up stealing one of UCLA’s Hawaiian recruits? Would he ever challenge USC for a recruit? Which school remembers him more fondly?

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