We planned to go down to SoCal for the Rose Parade regardless, but once USC surprisingly lost to UCLA, the weekend re-oriented itself around USC football. There was the trip to the USC campus so we could pick up additional USC paraphernalia and visit Heritage Hall, where national championship trophies and Heisman trophy after Heisman trophy were lined up in abundance. Then there was the Rose Parade, which also seemed like a USC event given that alumni George Lucas was Grand Marshal -- he had recently given ~$160M to the school. Lucas also did the coin toss at the start of the Rose Bowl with Darth Vader at his side -- USC won the toss.
Then, of course, the game. Our seats were at the USC endzone side of the stadium, which gave us a good view of the yellow/red divide on the opposite side:
It seemed that USC fans outnumbered Michigan 2:1 and we were loud. Actually, for the first half, we were only kinda loud. USC only managed 3 points and squandered at least one other scoring opportunity when QB Booty fumbled. 3-3 is not the most exciting score, though it did keep our nervous tension high. The entire USC offense seemed to consist of 1-yard running plays followed by lucky 3rd down passing conversions. My dad and I chatted during half time and it seemed to us that the USC defense was awesome, but the much vaunted USC offense was asleep.
The USC game plan changed for the second half to one simple rule: pass. Jarrett caught passes and darted away from defenders for 2 TDs. Steve Smith made long games. Fred Davis and Chris McFoy caught a couple. One TD drive consisted entirely of four passes: boom, boom, boom, TD. All the while the USC defense kept making excellent plays: interception by LoJack, sacks and a forced fumble by Cushing, anticipating the running plays before they developed, etc...
Everything went exactly how you want a game for your team to go: a close score early on to keep your attention, then a complete dismantling to leave no doubt. USC fans even got to see a glimpse of their future starting QB Mark Sanchez long before time ran out. Jarrett got offensive MVP honors and chants of "One More Year," Cushing got defensive MVP honors, and Booty reprised Leinhart's role by directing the marching band at the end of the game.
You can get the whole game on iTunes for $1.99. In fact, for $4.99 you can get the 2007 Rose Bowl plus USC's clobbering of Michigan in the 2004 Rose Bowl and the more disappointing 1989 Rose Bowl (for USC fans at least).