LSU and the University of Southern California (USC) have come to terms on a neutral site game to start the 2024 season, a source confirmed to The Reveille.
LSU is also set to play UCLA that season as well, giving the Tigers a chance to take down both of the major Los Angeles schools in one year. This game is interesting for two reasons.
The first being that this news came to light the day after the Big 10, Pac-12 and ACC announced “The Alliance,” a scheduling merger meant to combat a growing SEC powerhouse.
The cracks seem to be forming already because it took less than 24 hours for a Pac-12 team to break. An important thing to remember is that the alliance between conferences has no paperwork; it is only a verbal agreement.
Either way, this is a huge win for the Pac-12 and USC. It will be interesting to follow how the conferences approach the alliance and if anything actually comes from it.
The other main thing that is intriguing about this matchup is the year 2003.
LSU football fans will remember that as the year LSU beat Oklahoma for the National Championship, their first since 1958. Well, USC fans remember it as the year they finished the year ranked first in the AP Poll and felt robbed of the chance to play for the title game. They claim the national championship for that year, even stating it on their official website.
This led to heat between the two fan bases and schools, though the two schools haven’t played since 1984.
Ed Orgeron was on that 2003 USC coaching staff as an assistant head coach and defensive line coach. Though he had a successful stint as interim head coach at USC a decade later in 2013, Orgeron was never given a chance at the full-time job.
According to Bill Plaschke of the LA Times, they didn’t think he looked sophisticated enough for the job, sounded right for the job due to his accent or think he could lead the team in general.
There should be a lot more emotion in this game than on the surface of simply being a random SEC vs Pac-12 matchup.