September and October 2008 Candygrams

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Friday, October 31, 2008---Happy Halloween at Heritage Hall!

Ryan MaierMike Garrett with ZaneSome Heritage Hall employees dressed in costumes for Halloween. Jill Dennis wore a black Grim Reaper costume and mask. Assistant Director of Game Management, Ryan Maier, walked throughout Heritage dressed in a referee outfit, sunglasses and a cane. A BLIND Pac-10 referee!

USC’s first Heisman Trophy winner and current Athletic Director, Mike Garrett, posed for a picture with Zane. Not my grandson Zane, but another Tiny Trojan fan!

Kourage, Diandra, Dr. Juliet, and Keith KundahlA Trojan family from Pensacola, Florida, toured Heritage Hall and stopped by the desk for some Trojan candy. Dr. Juliet DeCampos was the Associate Sports Editor of the Daily Trojan when she was an undergrad. Now she is a renowned orthopedic surgeon. She and her family came for the USC-Washington football game, to visit her mom who still lives in the Valley and to visit Tim Tessalone, her USC classmate, who is the current Sports Information Director at USC. Juliet told us that after USC beat Oklahoma in 2004 to win the BCS Championship, she and her family had their own parade around Pensacola. They drove around with their car all decked out with USC paraphernalia! Her husband is Keith Kundahl and her children are Kourage Kundahl and Diandra DeCampos-Kundahl. Kourage is a young sports broadcaster and Diandra plays basketball and volleyball. All right! A future Woman of Troy!!!!

Amy RodriguezAmy Rodriguez, our Olympian Gold Medalist and a star on our Women of Troy Soccer team, posed for a picture with her big beautiful smile! She was on her way to play against Cal. I told her how proud we are of her for her performance in the 2008 Olympics.

Dwight Lewis came by for some Trojan candy. He took a few pieces of candy, and then he reached for a piece of Ghirardelli chocolate in the Ghost Bowl that my sister put the chocolate in. The ghost cackled and tickled! Needless to say, Dwight pulled his hand back as he was startled! He never took a piece of chocolate!

Band SilksThe “Men and Divas of Tomorrow Youth Organization” took a tour of Heritage. Their chaperone Deandre stopped by the desk to visit. The group is from North Las Vegas, Nevada. There may be some future Trojans here!

Six football Special Team members came by for Trojan candy. I asked one of the guys why only the Special Team members come by, and he said that they have more time. However, the number is growing! One day the entire football team will stop by!

The Band Silks practiced on the east patio, as usual. They were all dressed in Halloween costumes. There was a mouse, a cat, Pocohontas, Aladdin, a princess, Superman and other costumes.

Patrick TurnerAt the 5:00 pm pep rally, the entire band was dressed in costumes. The drum major was a yellow chicken. Patrick Turner was the honored player who climbed the ladder, addressed the team, and held the Trojan sword up to the team’s delight! Fight On, Patrick!

Men's Volleyball Team Later in the evening we went to the USC-Oregon Women’s volleyball match. Just as the match began, a group of men paraded to their courtside seats. They were all dressed up for Halloween. Then, we realized that it was the USC Men’s volleyball team! The entire team came to show their support. It worked...the women beat Oregon 3-2. Fight On!

October 24, 2008---A Special Day!

Greg Woidneck, Cooper Stephenson, and David BuehlerToday at Heritage was a special day because three football “Special Team” players came to the desk for the first time for some Trojan candy. They were punter Greg Woidneck, snapper Cooper Stephenson and kicker David Buehler!!! We wished them “Good Luck” against Arizona and told them to come back to visit us for more candy every week.

Mark Sanchez walked by in the lobby, but didn’t stop for any Trojan candy. We wished him good luck. The team was given white box lunches and left for the airport after 2:00 pm for the Arizona game.

There were a few tours that came by. My sister Pat spoke to some children from Foster Road Elementary School in La Mirada. The children really liked our seven Heisman trophies.

Our good friend Juan Figueroa dropped by the desk. He likes Bubblicious gum now, in addition to watermelon. He told me that he just finished playing his first season on the professional volleyball Puerto Rican team, Plataneros de Corozal. Then, Juan said that he was named “Rookie of the Year!” Another outstanding Trojan!

Kat StolpaA former Women of Troy soccer player, who played defense from 2004-2008, Kat Stolpa came to Heritage to visit with her friends and to attend the USC-UCLA women’s soccer game later in the Coliseum. Kat told me that she was President of the Student Academic Counsel when she was an undergrad. Another Trojan leader!

Our good friend Taj Gibson came by the desk twice. He only came the second time because I offered him some Halloween candy that I had just put out in a black cauldron. He took some gummy worms, but no marshmellow heads or gummy skulls! I asked Taj why he did not come to the reception after the Ryan Francis Scholarship event on Tuesday night 10/21/08. Taj said that he had a class. What a studious Trojan!

October 21, 2008---USC Basketball Tip Off Event to benefit the Ryan Frances Endowed Scholarship

Daniel Hackett and friendsPercy 'Romeo' Miller and Trojan CandyThe event started with a Patron Welcome Reception in the “Kennedy Founders” Room. The appetizers were delicious. Mmmm!

Then we watched a practice by the Cardinal and Gold teams. The 18 players turned their t-shirts inside out if they needed to switch to a different team. The team ran plays, practiced skills and did a short scrimmage. We look so FAST! Coach Floyd explained to us what was going on. Then he introduced the entire team individually, giving a little background on each player. He told us that this is the first time that he has had any players in the program for three years...Daniel Hackett, Dwight Lewis, Taj Gibson and Keith Wilkinson! After team pictures with some donors, the players were released. Then the Trojan Dance Force performed.

Donte Smith, DeMar DeRozan, and Dwight LewisIn the meantime, the donors returned to the Founders Room for the Patron Reception. Coach Floyd came in to give us a season outlook and to answer questions. One-by-one the team drifted in for the delicious roast beef and roasted turkey. My sister Pat, brother-in-law Dudley, friend Marianne Hunt and I walked around talking to the players. Such nice young amiable Trojans!

What a wonderful way to benefit the Ryan Francis Endowed Scholarship. FIGHT ON!

October 20, 2008---A Memorial Celebration for Craig William Fertig

Craig Fertig's jerseyMy sister, brother-in-law, brother and I attended the memorial service for Craig Fertig today at 2:00 pm after Monday Morning Quarterback. The Galen Center Founder room was jam packed. My most vivid memory of Craig Fertig was when I was a freshman seeing my first USC-Notre Dame football game in the Coliseum in 1964. Craig threw the winning touchdown pass to Rod Sherman that beat the #1 Irish. What a fond memory!

The service was filled with happy memories, and we laughed throughout. Fellow USC teammates, former players who played under Coach Fertig, and fellow coaches, as well as family, friends and Trojan alumni listened for two hours. The speakers included Pete Carroll, Mike Garrett, Rod Sherman, Dave Levy, John McKay, Jr. and Terry Donahue. Yes, that Terry Donahue, the former UCLA football coach! He and Craig Fertig were good friends for 35 years!

Coach Donahue related a typical Craig Fertig story. When Craig was the Oregon State head coach and Terry brought his #9 UCLA Bruins up to Oregon for the game, it was a 30 degree day. In warm-ups, the Oregon State players warmed (?) up in their uniforms without even wearing long sleeve shirts under their jerseys. The coaches were also dressed in short sleeve shirts. The two coaches conversed before the game and the conversation went something like this. Coach Donahue asked Coach Fertig, “How can you stand the weather here?” Coach Fertig replied that this is a beautiful day in Oregon and that his California players and coaches were “softies” for wearing long sleeve shirts, parkas and gloves. In his pregame talk in the locker room, Coach Donahue told his players and coaches to take off their long sleeve shirts, gloves and parkas. We’re going to be “tough” like the Oregon State Beavers! Then, he took his team on the field. After a very long wait, as Coach Donahue, his coaches and his team were shivering, Coach Fertig, his Oregon State team and coaches ran onto the field in long sleeves, parkas and gloves. Needless to say, the Bruins froze for a half and Oregon State WON the game 15-13!!!! Gotcha!

The Spirit of Troy paid its tribute to Craig to end the service. FIGHT ON, Craig!

October 17, 2008---A Quiet Day at Heritage Hall

Adam RoseThe football team left around 10:30 am from the auditorium through the downstairs exit. We only get to see the team leave after the Friday pep rallies at 5:00 pm before a home game. However, we did get to wave good-bye to the coaches and wish them “Good Luck!” The coaches left through the lobby at 12:30 pm. They all pull their small suitcases. Coach Carroll always, in my sister’s words, looks “snazzy” in his gray suit because it matches the color of his hair!

Our friend, Adam Rose of the LA Times “All Things Trojans” walked in earlier with Coach Carroll; then he came over for some Trojan candy. We talked about football, basketball and the Lexus Gauntlet. Hence, this picture of Adam by the Gauntlet trophy.

October 10, 2008---Parent’s Weekend at USC

What a busy day at Heritage! There were parents everywhere! Some of them came from Conneticut, Hawaii, New York, Maryland, Colorado, Washington, New Jersey, Ohio and California. We answered many questions, and many of the parents enjoyed our Trojan candy!

Greg, Leslie, and Nick FiggeIn the morning, photographers were taking individual pictures of the Women of Troy basketball and tennis teams in the Heritage Hall lobby. The photographers were Leslie and Greg Figge of Newport Beach. Their parents, Melba and William Figge, who are both Trojan alumni, started the tradition of donating their services to USC in the 1960’s and Leslie and Greg, along with their son Nick, are carrying on this tradition. Nick is a Senior this year, majoring in Fine Arts with emphasis in - what else? - Photography!

Cole and Brynn Cameron and GraceOne basketball player who came for her picture was Brynn Cameron. Brynn brought her son Cole and her cousin Grace with her.

Our good friend Juan Figueroa came by the desk for his favorite watermelon gum. We have two flavors. Juan will finish his degree in International Relations and Occupational Therapy this year. He is using his immense volleyball skills as an assistant coach in the Southern California Volleyball Club. Juan coaches 15 year old boys who practice in Redondo Beach. Another Trojan, giving back to society! Fight On!

Patrick Turner and Damian Williams came by for some Trojan Candy. Patrick is from Tennessee and Damien is from Arkansas. My sister Pat and I are from Houston, Texas. I was born and raised in Houston. Patrick told us that “We Southerners must stick together.” He then gave Pat a big hug.

Amy Rodriguez (one of our Olympians) waved to us but didn’t stop by the desk. She and a teammate were in a hurry to get to their soccer game. Fight On to Victory, Amy!

Taj Gibson with two fansTaj Gibson came up to say hello. After he got his Trojan candy, some fans came to get his autograph. Taj obliged with a smile. The fans were Alex Gross from Atlanta and Ryan McCarthy from San Carlos, California.

Swimmer Lilia Bonse’s mother, Julian Bonse, came by the desk also. Another Trojan parent we helped and who enjoyed a piece of Trojan candy.

For the first time, #29 Broderick Green came by for a piece of Trojan candy. We told him that we volunteer every Friday at the Heritage Hall desk and that we will always have his favorite AirHeads!

Lastly, a Phillies fan from New Jersey came by the desk. He said that he flies in once a year for a USC game, and said that all the football coaches upstairs were so friendly to him. He was able to get several football player autographs also. We ARE a Trojan Family! We are SC!

October 3, 2008---Just a few friends!

Joe Houston Today was pretty quiet at Heritage Hall. The football team had a rather long meeting in the auditorium. After the meeting was over, two position groups walked through the lobby. First the kickers walked through and then the tight ends. On the second time the kickers walked through, #30 Joe Houston came by for a piece of Trojan candy.

The band’s flag team practiced on the patio, as usual. The band practiced outdoors in sections throughout the Loker Track Stadium.

Marianne Hunt A club team of soccer players walked by the desk.

A good friend of ours came to visit after an on- campus workshop. Her name is Marianne Hunt. She is a counselor in Los Angeles City USD, and a big athletic supporter. We see her at men’s and women’s basketball games, men’s and women’s volleyball games, some baseball games, an occasional water polo match and tennis match.. Her brother played football for USC in 1960-1964. His name is Loran Hunt and his uniform # was 35. Loran played on John McKay’s championship team in 1962. He was a tailback and a defensive end. What a combination! Fight On, Mary Ann and Loran!

September 30, 2008---Guess Who I Saw?

It wasn’t at Heritage Hall. It was at Arizona Tile in Anaheim. My husband and I went to Arizona Tile to look at the piece of granite that will be our new kitchen countertop. Standing there was Lisa Leslie! She and her husband were picking out granite pieces to redecorate their new home with. She was gracious, as always. Lisa told us that she will be in Detroit on Saturday morning 10/4/08 for the WNBA, and then she will be in the Coliseum at half-time of the Oregon-USC game. All of USC’s Olympians are going to be honored then. She has four gold medals!

Fight On, Lisa!

September 26, 2008---at Heritage Hall

Zane and Mark SanchezHeritage Hall was so quiet this morning.... Everyone must have still been in shock from last night’s loss to the Oregon State football team!

Gary Klein of the LA Times walked around in the lobby. As far as I could tell, he couldn’t find anyone to interview.

The Heritage lobby desk was not quiet! My two-year-old grandson Zane accompanied me to volunteer this morning. Zane has met two famous USC athletes in his young life---O.J. Mayo and Mark Sanchez!!!! Mark came by the desk and gave me a big hug! Then he picked up Zane for a picture. As I took the picture, a tour group swarmed Mark. Mark posed for pictures and talked to various tour members. What a personable, charismatic, and gracious Trojan. Fight On, Mark, and get ready to roast the Ducks!

September 19, 2008---Just a few friends dropped by ...

Taj Gibson and ErikaGary Klein, who covers the USC football team for the LA Times, came to Heritage today.

The only coach, whom I saw upstairs in the football office, was Coach Rocky Seto. He always says “Hello” with a big smile!

Our good friend Taj Gibson came to the desk for some Trojan candy. He took some Fruit Sensations gum in a purple package. Taj was accompanied by Erika, a tutor who works downstairs. Taj told me that he played basketball all summer. He should be in Tip-Top shape for the upcoming basketball season. FIGHT ON TAJ!!!

Two Instant Groove dancers came to place try-out flyers on the desk. Paige Thompson is a Health Promotion major from Dallas, and Wendy Barclay is a Psychology major from San Diego. The young ladies told me that Instant Groove practices on the Heritage Hall patio twice a week. Instant Groove is a Hip-Hop dance troupe that performs on campus.

Talking about practicing, the USC Band Color Guard Flags practice on the Heritage Hall patio every day. As I looked out to see them practice, there was a very good friend, Tony Fox! Tony is the Assistant Director of the Spirit of Troy. He arranges and composes music for the band. My son Gregory took composition lessons from Tony for five years. Our conversation always includes USC football and politics! We both knew that our football team was going to manhandle Ohio State! Bring on the Beavers!

September 12, 2008---So many Ohio State Visitors!

The day before the big Ohio State football game was a busy one at Heritage Hall. Many Ohio State fans, who traveled from Columbus, walked throughout the lobby looking at our seven Heisman trophies and the 2004 BCS Championship glass football. Some of them even took some Trojan candy.

Trojan Candy and Angie MalekOne friend, Angie Malek, stopped by for a visit. She majored in Bio-Technology and Kineseology. Angie was a Trainer in football, track and baseball, but she now works in the USC Video Department. Angie wrote this for my TrojanCandy website. “Ohio State fans have taken over USC...too bad they wasted their money and time! I have USC confetti running through my blood.”

Another friend with a BIG smile came by. It was Frank Cushing, Brian’s dad! Frank told us that he went to the USC-Virginia victory and flew in for the Ohio State game, So nice to see him again!

Our punter #25 Billy O’Malley stopped by the desk and took some TrojanCandy m&m’s. May he “Fight On!”

Ms. G and her husbandErica Cox and her husband came by the desk. She was Stafon Johnson’s high school Math Teacher (Ms. G).

Taj Gibson stopped to say “Hello.”

Dr. BartnerWe closed up “shop” at 4:30 pm because the lobby was getting jam packed with spectators. What were they waiting for...? The 5:00 pm rally for the entire football team! The song girls came first, then the band ran in! The woodwinds ran upstairs, the brass section stayed downstairs and luckily, the tubas and drummers stayed outside. Dr. Bartner directed the band and the fans in the lobby from a ladder. Then...the entire football team ran in the west lobby doors!

Nick Holt, the Defensive Coordinator, spoke first. He told us that each part of the Ohio State football team was very good but he’d rather have our players. The crowd roared with approval! The team danced to all the band music, and I spotted Coach Pete Carroll standing among the players with a big smile on his face!

Brian CushingLastly, the chosen player of the week, Brian Cushing, climbed the ladder. He hyped up his fellow teammates to a frenzy! The entire team danced to the rousing music! Then Brian climbed up the ladder again. This time he held up a USC sword! More dancing and cheering ensued!!

Team busAfter Fight On was played, the entire team exited through the south doors to the buses outside that took them to the hotel.

September 5, 2008---Heritage...Soccer...and Volleyball!

Briana LaBriolaI met a fellow USC Helene today! A young lady came by the desk to pick up a football poster. As she turned to walk out the door, I noticed that the back of her T-shirt read Helenes 2007. When I asked her if she was in the Helenes, she returned to the desk, with a big smile! “Yes!” she said. Her name is Briana LaBriola, and she is from Sacramento. She lives in the Helenes Home on 29th Street. Briana, a Junior, is a Presidential Scholar, is in the Thematic Option Program and is majoring in Political Science. She also volunteers in undergraduate student government and in the Pepsters. I was in Amazons as a Junior and the Helenes as a Senior. My daughter Steffany, who graduated from the Marshall School of Business, was also in the Helenes!

Alicia RobinsonAlicia Robinson came by to visit! Alicia works at the Galen Center. She majored in Communications at USC and played on two NCAA Volleyball Championship teams. Her Championship ring is very large and impressive! Alicia told me that she had just visited her boy friend Chauncey Washington of the Jacksonville Jaguars. This fall she is the varsity volleyball coach at Marlborough High School. May she and Chauncey Fight On!

As Alicia was visiting, our good friend Juan Figueroa came by to say “Hello” and tease Alicia. They were kidding one another about who was older. (Alicia is) Juan took his favorite Trojan Candy, watermelon gum. He can’t play on the USC Volleyball team this year since he has used up his eligibility. We will miss him so much! Juan was the star player on the team! He is taking graduate courses this school year. May he Fight On in his studies and on the Puerto Rican National Team!

Kate McFetridgeAnother friend, Kate McFetridge, came running up to the desk with a big smile! She is a sophomore majoring in Health Promotion and Disease Prevention. Kate told me that she is from New Jersey and that she will tell her mom to look for her picture on Since Kate was on the Rowing Team, she chose to stand next to the Lexus Gauntlet trophy. The USC Women of Troy Rowing Team beat the Bruins last April to clinch the Gauntlet win for USC. Fight on this season, Kate!

Patrick Turner walked by, but took no candy. Mark Sanchez came by the desk and glanced at the DT. I told him that we were going to beat Ohio State next week, and that he was going to have a GREAT game. He just smiled that fabulous smile and said, “I’m working on it.” He also autographed my son’s 8/3/08 Sports Illustrated. Mark was on the cover with Brian Cushing and Rey Maualuga. Mark went upstairs and met up with Patrick Turner. However, Patrick was now walking with a dog on a leash. I asked him if the dog was his, and he said, “No, it’s not my dog.” Wonder whose it was? More about Mark later.

Several other athletes came by the Information desk today.

Football: Charles White jogged by, as usual, with a smile and a “Hello.” Coach Ken Norton said “Hello,” but didn’t want any candy.

Basketball: A tall, slender young man walked by the desk. I asked him if he wanted any Trojan candy. He said “No.” Then I asked if he was a football player. He replied that he is a basketball player and his name is Alex Stepheson. He couldn’t pose for a picture because he was late for a meeting. Next time! Our dear friend Taj Gibson came by. My husband Jim and I told him that we are so glad that he stayed. Fight On Taj!!!!!

Baseball: Three Club players came by for candy.

Women’s Soccer: Amy Massey who plays Defense on this year’s team borrowed my pen to fill out a graduate scholarship form. She couldn’t pose for a picture because she was late for a meeting. I wished her “Good Luck” on the scholarship. Fight On Amy!

That's Amy RodriguezNow, more about Mark Sanchez. My husband and I left Heritage Hall earlier in order to walk over to McAlister Field to see the home opener game of the NCAA Champion USC Women’s Soccer game against Santa Clara. At halftime, as I sat in the shade at the far end of the soccer field behind the goal, several football players walked over to sit in the shade also. Three familiar faces were Mark Sanchez, Brian Cushing and Taylor Mays!

The Soccer team beat Santa Clara 2-1.

Later in the evening we went to the Galen Center and watched the USC Women’s Volleyball team sweep Hofstra 3-0. What a fantastic Trojan day!!!!!!