Player Spotlight: Ron Ayala


Ron Ayala was a backup quarterback and safety but he is remembered for one play as USC’s kicker. In 1969, Stanford took a 24-23 lead over USC with 1:03 left at the Coliseum. The Trojans then drove 68 yards. And as time expired, Ayala kicked a 34-yard field goal to give USC a 26-24 victory over Jim Plunkett and Stanford.

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  • Sally Cushing

    I put the USC v. UCLA over/under 2015 recruiting class rankings differential at 63, USC at 9 and UCLA 72.

    • Only so many studs to go around…

      • UCLA owns LA Football

        Isn’t her stud nephew headed to Cal Poly somewhere.

  • ThaiMex

    Ron Ayala…a fine man of Mexican heritage , as was the BRILLIANT Jim Plunkett. Speaking of fine Mexican heritage….anybody seen Nubsie?
    fit Un Knuckleheads!

    • Thai, dontcha MISS the inevitable “tacos and beer” comment by ol’ Nubsie???

      For those few “accepting” souls who openly miss Nubsie, this is for you!!


      • ThaiMex

        Chucker….Maybe we should meet for lunch, over at Lee and Friends. We can bring “the Big Guy” his favorite lunch, CROW!

        fit Un knuckleheads!

        • Thai, CAPITAL IDEA!!

          but if i get within 10 ft of the pig-eyed racist, i will probably shove un botella de Tapatio donde el sol no alumbre!!!!


        • ThaiMex

          Chucker….I loved your comment (obviously, Herr Moderator, doesn’t appreciate Tapatio!
          fit Un!

      • TrojanFan3.0

        Dude, you got some on your chin. You can’t even get the burp thing right, pathetic

  • 22

    The 1969 SC Stanford game was one of the most exciting football games that I have ever seen and Ron earned a place in USC football history with that kick. The last drive was heart-stopping. SC got the ball on its 20 with about 56 seconds; not much time in those days, particularly for a running team. As time was nearly out, facing 4th and long, they barely made a first down with a pass to tight-end Gary Mullins. Out of timeouts, the clock was briefly stopped to move the chains (first year that was the rule), and the clock started with 3 to 5 seconds. The ball was snapped, just as the team got set and as the clock ran out. A very emotional game for everyone in attendance.

    Ron Ayala was much more than a back-up safety. He was the starting safety for SC in 1970 and, as I recall, for one season (we had trouble with the snaps from center that year) was also the SC punter. I remember him a few times chasing down the ball, avoiding defenders and kicking it on the run.

    The 1970 season began with an epic victory over Alabama and ended with an epic victory over then undefeated Notre Dame, but the rest of the season didn’t go well and SC was coming off of a very bad loss to UCLA the prior week.

    In the Notre Dame game, Joe Theismann threw over 50 times for over 500 yards (at the time, an NCAA record). It rained during the second half. Late in the game, Ron broke his arm giving everything he had to tackle a Notre Dame receiver (tight-end if I remember correctly). He went back in the game and in the final drive, sealed the victory by intercepting Theismann, as Joe was marching Notre Dame down the field. Theismann was intercepted 4 times that day and fumbled in the end-zone. SC won 38-28. It was another incredible game. I think most of the fans were simply hoping that the Trojans would keep the game close. Ron Ayala is one of my SC favorite players. I recall Coach McKay saying that he played with all of his heart.

    • rusoviet

      USC wqas quarterbacked by Jimmy Jones – a much maligned player – somehow that name was missing – mind you loved your post.

      It was an awful year bookended by victories over AL and Notre Dame – Stanford hammered us up in Palo Alto – ugly year but not as ugly as Notre Dame absorbed – rainy day in LA … a rainy day in LA … (my apologies to Brook Benton)

  • TrojanLights

    Ron was a good guy. I played with him my freshman year.