Saturday, October 22, 2005

A Winning Philosophy

As the USC football team scratches another challenger off the list of teams standing in the way of an unprecedented third straight national title, it's worth taking a moment to look at the winning philosphy of head coach Pete Carroll that has been integral to the Trojans' current win streak.

Last spring, Carroll spoke to students in USC president Steven Sample’s leadership class about that philosophy. He described himself as a competitor, both on and off the field, and stressed the importance and responsibility of being a motivator for the team.

“You have to hone a formula that works," he said, adding with a smirk, "Looks like we did." Once you find a method that works, said Carroll, "then you just keep using it over and over.”

Even in a lecture hall, Carroll's energy and charisma were infectious, proving that his unique ability to inspire works on more than just football players.

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Friday, October 21, 2005

Setting the Record Straight

Two weeks ago, former USC running back Petros Papadakis sent tongues wagging when he "reported" on his radio show that Matt Leinart's good friend Nick Lachey had moved out of the house he shares with wife Jessica Simpson and was crashing on Leinart's couch.

The story, Papadakis later admitted, was a fabrication, but on Friday he was back to spreading rumors about Leinart's personal life.

Papadakis told his listeners that, while at a Victoria's Secret party at Mood on Wednesday night, Leinart was hitting on Shannen Doherty (formerly of 90210) and Paris Hilton. Papadakis went on to say he was glad Leinart was playing the field and enjoying his final season as the crown prince of Los Angeles, not allowing himself to be tied down by girlfriend Brynn Cameron.

Here's the problem: like the story about Lachey sleeping over, what Papadakis reported is far from the truth.

How do I know? I was at the party.

Yes, Leinart spoke with Doherty for a few minutes, who was accompanied by her boyfriend, and Paris Hilton did saunter over to talk with the Heisman Trophy winner, but the sparks were not flying, at least on Leinart's part. Far from putting out the vibe, Matt was more comfortable sitting on the sidelines.

As for his relationship with Cameron? Still going strong, despite all the rumors of Leinart's supposed unfaithfulness that the two of them are forced to deal with on what's becoming a daily basis.

For the record.

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