On October 3, Arizona State took on UCLA. Picked to be a Pac-12 title challenger this season, the Sun Devils’ play had been disappointing. Meanwhile, UCLA , undefeated and ranked No. 7 in the polls, looked to keep rolling in front of a home crowd in Pasadena’s Rose Bowl. Surprisingly, ASU pull off a dominant 38-23 upset.
That made me think about an ASU-UCLA game I photographed on November 14, 1981, when UCLA was still playing their home games in the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. The AP poll ranked Arizona State No. 9, while UCLA ranked No. 18. The Bruins won the battle 34-24. The UCLA defense, gang tackling ASU star running back Gerald Rigg, forced seven Sun Devil turnovers to pull off the upset victory.
Thirty four years have passed between the two games. It would be a stretch to pull out the old cliché, “What goes around, comes around.” Instead, I will use another cliché, “Thanks for the memory.” Any trip to Los Angeles for football always turned out well for me.