First-year USC coach Andy Enfield made derogatory comments about crosstown rival UCLA and its new coach Steve Alford last year that he didn't intend for public consumption.
In the first meeting between the programs this season on Sunday, Enfield's players didn't have the stuff to back up their coach's trash talk.
UCLA dismantled the Trojans 107-73 in a contest that wasn't really close beyond late in the first half. The Bruins tied their highest point total in history against the Trojans. Alford and Enfield appeared cordial in a postgame handshake patting each other on the shoulder.
Here is a little reminder of the history that led up to the first meeting of the season.
Shortly after he was hired away from Florida Gulf Coast after leading that program to a historic Sweet 16 appearance as a No. 15 seed, Enfield was speaking to a group of USC boosters and said this of Alford who had just been hired away from New Mexico, ""I don't worry about them. I've made it to one Sweet Sixteen in two years, and he's made it to one Sweet Sixteen in 18 years."
The San Jose Mercury News reported that Enfield stopped a preseason practice in October to tell his team, ""We play up-tempo here. If you want to play slow, go to UCLA."
Alford finally issued a response of sorts in the Nov. 25 issue of Sports Illustrated, saying, “We’ve won 11 national titles and they haven’t won any. A lot has to change before the comparison can be made between us and them as basketball schools.”
Three different players scored at least 20 points for UCLA, led by Kyle Anderson's 23. The Bruins attempted 71 field goals compared with 62 for the Bruins.
In fairness to Enfield, he can't be expected to have this USC team playing at the same high-flying level that he had FGCU at last March. But he also set the expectation with his comments and he had to deal with the harsh reality of how far his program has to go Sunday.
- - - - - - -