No. 1 USC Football Hosts No. 7 California In Key Pac-10 Battle

Oct. 3, 2004

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Two of the nation's top teams meet in this early-season Pac-10 showdown as No. 1-ranked and defending national champion USC hosts No. 7 California...and it's a big deal in a lot of ways. The game, to be shown live regionally on ABC-TV, is sold out in the 92,000-seat Coliseum (the first Coliseum sellout in the series since 1930 and the largest non-UCLA/non-Notre Dame home crowd since the 1952 Cal game). Even ESPN's Game Day pre-game show will be there! California was the last team to beat the Trojans. Since that triple overtime loss in Berkeley last year (which snapped Troy's 11-game winning streak), USC has won 13 consecutive games and 8 straight Pac-10 games. Troy also is putting a 16-game Coliseum winning streak on the line. USC, which is starting a 3-game homestand, is coming off its second bye of 2004 after averting an upset two weeks ago at Stanford. This is USC's 92nd meeting with California, the team Troy has played more than any opponent. This is the highest-ranked Cal team USC has faced since 1952. Cal has been a thorn to the Trojans in the past decade. The Golden Bears, who hammered Oregon State on the road last Saturday, feature coach Jeff Tedford's always-dangerous offense. Cal is ranked high in every national offensive statistical category--behind the likes of QB Aaron Rodgers, TB J.J. Arrington and WR Chase Lyman--and the Golden Bear defense is nearly as impressive. The Trojans continue to rank in the nation's Top 25 in every offensive and defensive statistical category. The USC offense features Heisman Trophy candidate QB Matt Leinart and the dangerous duo of TBs Reggie Bush and LenDale White. And the Trojan defense--which already has 13 takeaways--has such All-American candidates as LB Matt Grootegoed and DLs Shaun Cody and Mike Patterson. Football isn't the only sport where highly-ranked Trojan and Bear teams will battle on Saturday, as the teams also meet in men's water polo and women's volleyball at USC.

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