Thanks to the Pac-12, the Cal men’s basketball team is not coming to Los Angeles this year to play USC and UCLA. Apparently, something similar is happening on the women’s side with the Bears coming to L.A. but not hosting USC or UCLA.
But Cal partially fixed it by scheduling a non-conference game against UCLA on Dec. 21. That’s one way to overcome a Pac-12 schedule.
I decided to ask another expert about USC’s regular-season victory total, which was initially a jarring 8-8.5 until moving up to 9 recently. Here’s some thoughts from Peter Loshak, the college football lead handicapper at Sportsbook Review.
“Even 9 (wins) might seem low at first glance, considering the high expectations for USC this year. But, they aren’t actually getting disrespected by the pre-season futures markets. Even with their season win total at 9, they are still the betting favorites to win the Pac-12, and they are still being given the fifth-shortest odds of any team in the nation to make the National Playoffs and win the Championship.
“Their odds are about 2-1 to win the Pac-12, which makes then the favorite, and about 7/2 to make the National Playoffs, behind only Ohio St, Alabama, TCU and Florida St. So the betting market isn’t sleeping on USC.
“The low win total speaks mostly to the impressive strength and balance of the Pac-12 this year.
Former USC pitcher Randy Johnson was officially inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame today. From a USC perspective, it is interesting to note that he has remained involve with the baseball program, attending last year’s ceremony for the statue of legendary manager Rod Dedeaux. And of course, he was a member of the Daily Trojan staff while a USC student. The below photo is of the Daily Trojan team that faced UCLA in the 1982 Blood Bowl.
A reader suggests a different question for yesterday: Will Cody Kessler stay in games to pad the stats for an Heisman Trophy campaign or will Max Browne’s need for experience be more important? If you watched any USC-Colorado games since 2010, you know stat-padding is an art form for the football program. So it’s a legitimate question.