Friday, October 19 , 2018, 9:18 am | Fair 64º

 
 
 

She Said, Z Said: USC? Seriously?

A clearly bogus new ranking that puts USC over UCLA must be talking about the University of South Carolina

Z: Did you hear that USC pulled ahead of UCLA?

She: At what? Most beer chugged? Most spoiled children? I don’t think that one’s new.

Z: No, for ...

She: Was it for most ridiculously expensive? Worst neighborhood? Most corrupt sports program? Again, in what way could they possibly have pulled ahead?

Z: For the first time ever, they were ranked ahead of UCLA in the U.S. News & World Report annual rankings of best colleges.

She: That’s hilarious.

Z: No, really.

She: Is this like the time you told me that you were secretly a prince?

Z: No ...

She: Or are you just confused, like how when Koss saw that little fat roll above your bathing suit, and he said, “Nice mutton-top, Dad,” instead of muffin-top?

Z: Fine. Read it yourself. USC is now ranked 23rd, and UCLA is ranked 25th.

She: ...

Z: Speechless?

She: I think this must be a prank. College kids are doing those kinds of things all the time. It must be a prank.

Z: I’m afraid not.

She: How is this possible? USC was never a real school. It’s where you went if you had too much money and not enough grades. It was a safety school for rich kids.

Z: Things change. Apparently, it’s a good school now. And UCLA isn’t even that much cheaper anymore.

She: I feel like I’m in The Twilight Zone. Next thing you’ll tell me is that Dos Pueblos High School is ranked higher than San Marcos High School. Wouldn’t that be weird?

Z: Last year, Dos Pueblos’ Academic Performance Index (API) was 799 and San Marcos’ was 759.

She: Cow-pie High? When did we move to Bizarro World? When I was growing up, Dos Pueblos was a punch line, way way way out there in Goleta where nobody ever went, and UCLA was only worried about USC in badminton.

Z: Even UCSB, which seems best known for being in the top 10 party schools on a Playboy list, is ranked as the 39th best university in the nation.

She: And yet, I’m OK with that. I never competed with UCSB, and am honestly proud that our local UC keeps getting better and better.

Z: That’s big of you.

She: But USC? I’m assuming some alum with an inheritance bought U.S. News & World Report, and put the fix in. Did they spell UCLA correctly?

Z: Less big of you.

She: Does this now invalidate my entire education? Are my San Marcos and UCLA degrees worthless?

Z: No. You can still use that advanced degree in writing columns that you got.

She: I did find a better study online, one that’s not a prank. In Washington Monthly’s 2010 college guide, they rated schools based on their contribution to the public good. Guess where UCLA was?

Z: 25th?

She: Try No. 3. It’s based on recruiting and graduating low-income students, producing cutting-edge scholarship and Ph.D.s, and encouraging students to give something back to their country. Guess where USC was?

Z: 23rd?

She: Try not even on the list. I told you that U.S. News & World Report thing was bogus. It was totally a prank, unless we moved to Bizarro World.

Z: Yes, dear.

— Share your Bruin pride and Trojan tears with She and Z by e-mailing .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

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