Guarding the traditions


At least for this week, Tommy Trojan might be the only statue in America with 24-hour bodyguards.

To prevent any rivalry shenanigans -- like the one that happened to UCLA's bruin statue last night -- the USC icon in the middle of campus has been wrapped in duct tape and is being guarded 24 hours a day for the week leading up to Saturday's game at the Coliseum. The faithful, round-the-clock protection is an annual rite of the Trojan Knights, a USC spirit organization that also keeps watch over the Victory Bell and other Trojan traditions. Couches, music and the Victory Bell have been set up around Tommy Trojan to help pass the time.

Also, the George Tirebiter statue on the southern portion of campus has been enclosed with a makeshift doghouse by the Trojan Knights, guarding it from any rival pranks.

Troy Week has a different feel this year because it falls around Thanksgiving, when most students skip out on classes and head home for all or most of the week. But the Trojan Knights are adding a little flavor to the slower week by hosting a Thanksgiving dinner at Tommy Trojan on Thursday -- to coincide with their 24-hour protection of the statue.

To protect it from rival pranks, Tommy Trojan has been shrouded with duct tape and is being guarded by Trojan Knights 24 hours a day. The Victory Bell, awarded to the winner of the USC-UCLA game, is at the foot of the iconic statue.

The George Tirebiter statue on the south part of campus has been covered by a doghouse to shield it from pranks.


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