This is an extremely tough game to pick because it really is close and can go either way. UCLA seems to have more spirit. USC has more talent but even last week sleepwalked through the first half.
And I have little faith Lane Kiffin will outcoach Jim Mora. And this game means a lot more to the Bruins after last year’s 50-0 loss. UCLA does trouble me because it has not played Stanford or Oregon.
So I am going to pick USC for one reason: The emotion of the crosstown rivalry means Kiffin becomes less of a factor. He doesn’t need to get the Trojans emotionally ready, the rivalry does it.
Here’s my score: USC 45, UCLA 37