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Rick Neuheisel tells UCLA boosters he's 'ticked' at USC's Pete Carroll

June 8, 2009 |  4:13 pm


Take-your-child-to-work day rarely falls on a Saturday, but UCLA's Rick Neuheisel wants to do something about that.

A league rule prohibits anybody younger than 18 from being on the sideline during a football game, so Neuheisel proposed creating a waiver for coaches' children. When he brought it up to a committee of his fellow coaches, the vote was overwhelmingly in favor -- by a margin of 9-1.

Was it another case of Pac-10 football boiling down to USC and everybody else?

Neuheisel shared the story during a booster event in Westlake Village last month. He recalled looking at the lone dissenter and thinking, "I'm gonna' get you. I'm gonna' reel you in. I don't know how, I don't know when, but I am not going to rest until I reel you in." Then he reminded the crowd, "Now, you noticed I did not name any names, did I?"

But immediately before that, he made it clear whom  he was talking about. First acknowledging respect for Pete Carroll, Neuheisel introduced his story by saying, "He did something this last week that ticks me off, and I'm going to share it with you and see if it ticks you off. And we're going to walk out of this room tonight ticked off at Pete Carroll, ticked off at all that is SC."

It's worth nothing that though Neuheisel's kids are all under 18, most if not all of Carroll's are over 18. In fact, son Brennan Carroll is an assistant coach for the Trojans.

Sidelines can be unfriendly places for kids. Heavy equipment is all over the place, and that's not including the 300-pound linemen. Grown men run out of bounds at a full sprint. Carroll once saw one of his own receivers sprain an ankle while avoiding a small child on the sideline of USC's practice field.

So what's the real reason that the not-so-mysterious man dissented? Maybe he'll Twitter about it later.

Neuheisel is still hoping to be joined by his kids, even if he's not sure what to do with them. He told the crowd that before technology improved, some leagues allowed coaches' children to carry cords around on the sideline. "I kinda always dreamt of a day that my boy would be able to do that. Well, now we don't have cords ... but I'm still going to make my son carry one even though it's not plugged into anything!"

Video of the booster event, which was originally posted on UCLA's YouTube account, appears to be down. It was also posted on BruinsNation.

-- Adam Rose

Photos: UCLA's Rick Neuheisel, left, is upset with USC's Pete Carroll, right. Credit: Photographs by Luis Sinco/Los Angeles Times