UCLA Football: This Battle For the Pac-12 South Will Not End Like Last Year


The UCLA Football team had a chance to win the Pac-12 South Division last year, but lost to Stanford in the final game of the regular season which prevented that. This outcome will not happen this year against USC.

The UCLA Football team had defeated the USC Trojans 38-20 last season at the Rose Bowl, making it the third year in a row that the Bruins have conquered the Trojans. It was a game so lopsided and brutal that even Snoop Dogg had to comment.

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It was a great victory, but the battle was far from over. With this win, UCLA was riding high on a huge wave of momentum going into their final regular season game. If UCLA defeats Stanford, then the Bruins would win the Pac-12 South and head to the Pac-12 Championship Game for the second time in three years.

UCLA Bruins
UCLA Bruins /

UCLA Bruins

Stanford clobbered UCLA, 31-10.

All the Bruins had to do was win (against an opponent Head Coach Jim Mora cannot seem to beat) and they would be in the Championship Game. Unfortunately, that aforementioned wave of momentum came crashing down to reality as the overly confident Bruins were given a course in humility.

It was one of the most deflating games in the Mora era. Not only did UCLA Football NOT win the South and NOT go to the Pac-12 Championship Game, but they never had a chance in this game against the Cardinal. As Stanford does, they punished UCLA from the get-go and never allowed them to be comfortable in this game.

This year, the Bruins are back in the role of controlling their own destiny going into the last game of the season. The winner of this UCLA-USC game heads to the Pac-12 Championship Game and I guarantee you the Bruins will not have the same mentality going into this game as they did last year.

Last year, it seemed the Bruins expected to roll over a struggling Stanford squad and waltz into the Pac-12 Championship. That is not the case this season.

First off, the Bruins are limping into this Crosstown Showdown and to be in this situation that will actually allow them to compete for the Division is a miracle. Secondly, the Bruins will not take this game lying down, especially since it is against the hated Trojans. Third, Mora will have this team prepared mentally and not have them in the mindset that this game is a “gimme”, because it is not.

The Trojans, who have been trying to prove that they belong in the Pac-12 South conversation, have also stumbled this season and like the Bruins control their own destiny, so they are going to be just as prepared for this game. Now how they match-up is a different story (you are just going to have to read our preview).

Next: Memorable Moments From The UCLA-USC Rivalry

Either way, there will be no inflated egos, and there will be no notion that the Bruins will stroll into the Pac-12 Championship Game with an easy victory against USC. UCLA Football will need to go into the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum and fight, fight, fight against their crosstown rival for that chance to play for a conference title and a Rose Bowl berth and that will take focus, which this Bruin team will have.

Go Bruins!