Cooper shows fire in torrid remarks

first_imgWell, that’s one way to put it.After the USC women’s basketball team beat UCLA 70-63 on Sunday, coach Michael Cooper opened the postgame news conference by saying, “My opening statement is, f— UCLA.”Interesting start · In just his first season as coach of the Women of Troy basketball team, coach Michael Cooper has riled up controversy. – Tim Tran | Daily Trojan Cooper went on to say many more words after that, but — not surprisingly — none seemed to have the same effect as the first sentence.Many people were taken aback by Cooper’s words, and he promptly apologized for his actions in a letter sent Tuesday to UCLA coach Nikki Caldwell. The Pac-10 issued a reprimand in response to the statement, and it remains to be seen if Cooper will be punished further.But I, for one, enjoyed the statement.While the blunt word choice might not have been appropriate, the fiery passion and rivalry that the phrase embodies seems to be one of the only ways to describe the relationship between USC and UCLA. Cooper was visibly excited about the win, as he should be; a win in this matchup seems to rank above most everything else in a coach’s résumé, and to do it in front of a charged-up home crowd is an experience second to none.So I saw Cooper saying those six words with the intention of displaying how much he, as well as everyone else at USC, cared about the rivalry; not in a malicious spirit but simply a competitive one.And, to be honest, I didn’t think it was anything new.Although he is the first one to articulate it so eloquently, Cooper is the last in a long line of USC coaches to make this statement in one form or another during the course of this school year.Take, for instance, former football coach Pete Carroll, who made his “expletive statement” in the form of some good old football bravado. As you might remember, immediately following a questionable UCLA timeout with the game all-but-over, Carroll decided to take one last shot at the end zone with 44 seconds left in USC’s game against the Bruins on Nov. 28. The result was a 48-yard pass-and-catch from quarterback Matt Barkley to wideout Damian Williams, which put the Trojans up 21 points and caused quite a stir on the sidelines.“It is just the heart of a competitor — just battling,” Carroll said after the game.Or how about men’s basketball coach Kevin O’Neill, who led his team into Pauley Pavilion last Saturday and handed the Bruins a 21-point loss — their worst to the Trojans since the 1944-45 season? He made his   “expletive statement” almost silently, not even knowing the record he had broken.“I wasn’t aware of all the statistics or any of that stuff, but I’m glad I was a part of it,” O’Neill said in the locker room.Even Jovan Vavic, the coach of USC men’s water polo, gave his  “expletive statement” this season perhaps in the most fitting form of all: pure, hard-nosed competition. His team won its fifth National Championship since 1998 by edging out the Bruins 7-6 in the NCAA title game — a win that put USC up 3-2 in the season series against UCLA and avenged their semifinal loss to the Bruins in the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation championships.“It is really fitting for these boys to end up on top, to win their last collegiate game and to beat UCLA,” Vavic said.So while Cooper’s words were not in the right place, one could argue that his heart was. Of course, to properly put that idea into words seems near impossible without drawing scrutiny (and in this case punishment), but Cooper obviously saw it fit to show his enthusiasm — as he should.A rivalry as intense as USC and UCLA’s feeds on the sold-out crowds, the epic matchups, the incredible finishes and, yes, even the occasional inflammatory statement. It’s a tradition that has been around for the majority of the schools’ existences, and it embodies everything that collegiate athletics stand for.And there is no doubt in my mind that the feeling is reciprocated fully by our neighbors in blue and gold.“One-Two Punch” runs every other Friday. To comment on this article, visit or e-mail James at read more

Women’s Tennis: Badgers halt seven-game skid in time for end of season

first_imgThis weekend the Wisconsin Women’s Tennis Team was matched up with the University of Iowa and finally stole a “w.” The team was hoping for a victory to finish out this season after suffering through a seven-match losing streak.Pulling off this win allowed the Badgers to finish the season on a high note. This win came at a 4–1 margin over Iowa, who are 2–9 in the Big Ten and 10–14 overall. The Badger’s record for the season is 3–8 in the Big Ten and 9–14 overall.Wisconsin was off to a good start by winning the doubles point, which is one of the two victories necessary for forming an upset. Wisconsin’s No. 1 doubles pair, junior Sara Castellano and freshman Lexi Keberle defeated the No. 63 duo in the nation 6–3, gaining Wisconsin’s first point in the match.Softball: Badgers finish off Boilermakers at home Sunday to win seriesThe University of Wisconsin Softball Team (22–17, 6–6 Big Ten) played host to Purdue (13–34, 4–10 Big Ten) in a Read…The No. 2 doubles slot, consisting of sophomore Melissa Pick and freshman MaryAnn Rompf, also snatched a victory, by defeating their opponents 6–2.In the singles competition, Iowa was able to even up the match 1–1, defeating freshman MaryAnn Rompf 6–1, 6–4. However, the Badgers luckily bounced back thanks to the victories of Castellano, Pick and sophomore Michelle Linden, which ultimately resulted in the Badgers gaining back four points.Pick secured the first victory, defeating Iowa’s Adorabol Huckleby 6–0, 6–2. Michelle Linden immediately followed with another victory winning in straight sets. She quickly defeated her opponent sophomore Adrienne Jensen 6–3, 6–1. To close out the season, Castellano pulled out a victory 7–6, 6–1 against Iowa’s Zoe Douglas.Reflecting on this season overall, it is clear that the Badgers most definitely have some work to do in order to be more successful next year.last_img read more

Mom gets jail time, probation in toddler’s death

first_imgJail overcrowding has resulted in an early release of inmates. But on Monday, Calloway said prosecutors agreed to have Wilson sentenced Monday because she has children with health problems. “The D.A.’s Office agreed to do that. She’s got children with health issues that she takes care of,” Calloway said. Deputy District Attorney Valerie Little declined to comment on the case. Wilson will surrender Friday to begin serving her jail time. Wilson pleaded guilty to one count of felony child abuse after prosecutors agreed to dismiss a second felony child-abuse count. LANCASTER – A Lake Los Angeles woman was sentenced Monday to two months in jail for endangering her three children by driving around barricades into a storm-swollen wash, resulting in the drowning of her 2-year-old daughter. Sheshe Myesha Wilson, 36, also known as Tonie Myesha Davis, also was placed on four years’ probation. “This is more a tragedy than an accident,” said Wilson’s attorney, Bryant Calloway. “There is no question that she is a good mother.” Monday’s sentencing was the result of a plea agreement announced in November. Prosecutors said Wilson would serve the 60 days in Los Angeles County jail first and then be formally sentenced to ensure that she served the entire two-month term. Wilson drove her SUV around two sets of “road closed” barriers during a torrential Jan. 9, 2005, storm and into fast-moving water where normally dry Little Rock Wash crosses Avenue N, officials said. Little Jamaia Davis fell into the flooded desert wash while a Los Angeles County Fire Department helicopter was rescuing the family members from their Ford Escape, which was nearly submerged. The toddler’s lifeless body was found a mile or two downstream. Little said previously that Wilson, the toddler, and Wilson’s two other children, a 16-year-old girl and a 10-year-old boy, had climbed on the vehicle’s roof after it got stuck in the fast-moving water. A CHP officer and road workers in a county truck, then firefighters in a fire engine, were unable to get through the water, though they could hear the family screaming, authorities said. A Fire Department helicopter, whose crew had already rescued more than two dozen storm victims elsewhere around the county that day, began lifting people off the car, fire officials said. There have been conflicting accounts of how the toddler fell into the water. Little had said earlier that Wilson fell off the top of the car and lost hold of the toddler. Calloway said rescue workers bumped into Wilson, and the toddler was knocked out of her mother’s arms. (661) 267-5744160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more