This is the 50th anniversary of a campaign by USC alumni to raise funds for the construction of an 8,000-seat arena on campus. . . .
Still no arena. . . .
Since 1946, the Trojan basketball team has played home games at the Olympic Auditorium, Shrine Auditorium, Pan-Pacific Auditorium, the campus gym, Long Beach City College, Cal State Dominguez, Loyola Marymount, the Forum, the Lyon Center and the Sports Arena. . . .
"I know there has been a lot of talk over the years about building an on-campus facility, but, from all indications, it's about to happen," USC Coach Charlie Parker said. "We're hoping that there will be an announcement in three or four months. The commitment to basketball is there." . . .
That remains to be seen. . . .
Meanwhile, the Trojans will have to play Pacific 10 Conference rival California tonight at the Forum. . . .
The Clippers, you see, are playing the Minnesota Timberwolves at the Sports Arena. . . .
"Even our practice sessions bounce around, place to place," Parker said Wednesday. "We're working out today at the Forum. We practice at the Sports Arena when the Clippers or Ice Dogs aren't there, and at our gym on campus.". . . .
It was mentioned the other day that anybody who could figure out the hot-and-cold Trojans should contact Parker. . . .
"I haven't gotten any calls yet," Parker said. "I'm looking for some. I'll take all suggestions." . . .
USC is 8-5, but so inconsistent that it lost to Washington by 22 points Thursday night at Seattle and beat Washington State two days later at Pullman. . . .
"We try to make every situation 'do or die' for our players," Parker said. "We challenge them to rise to the occasion. Some games, it works." . . .
Karim Abdul-Jabbar made the right decision. . . .
The NFL final four is rich in tradition. . . .
The Dallas, Green Bay, Pittsburgh and Colt franchises have won 11 of the 29 Super Bowls and been runners-up four times. . . .
Key to the Cowboy-Packer game will be Emmitt Smith's performance against a defense that has stopped lesser running backs from San Francisco and Atlanta during the playoffs. . . .
At Pittsburgh, the question is whether Indianapolis can over-achieve for a third consecutive week. . . .
Jim Harrick will autograph copies of his book, "Embracing the Legend: Jim Harrick Revives the UCLA Mystique," Sunday at 4 p.m. at the Borders Book Store in Santa Monica. . . .
Channel 56 will inaugurate its live, 11-race series of stakes races from Santa Anita on Saturday at 3:30 p.m. with the $200,000 San Fernando Stakes, second leg of the Strub series. . . .
Track announcer Trevor Denman will make the call, Bill Seward and Kurt Hoover will be co-hosts, and Jeff Siegel the analyst. . . .
"I'm going to take an X's and O's approach and try to analyze how the race will unfold," said Siegel, who is a horse owner and handicapper. . . .
Today's NHL rules suggestion: Play 30-minute halves instead of three 20-minute periods. Two intermissions are one too many. . . .
Oscar De La Hoya is relishing the opportunity to move up to 140 pounds against Darryl Tyson on Feb. 9 and then, according to plan, against Julio Cesar Chavez on June 7. . . .
"I'd much rather fight at 140 than 135," De La Hoya said. "For a long time, I've been training at more than 140. I've had to stop eating before fights. Now, I'll be much stronger." . . .
De La Hoya was back in the gym in Big Bear two weeks after stopping James Leija at Madison Square Garden. . . .
"That fight only lasted two rounds," De La Hoya explained. . . .
During a phone interview the other day, the 33-year-old Chavez, who has had 97 fights, insisted that his skills haven't diminished. . . .
Others disagree, though, and De La Hoya is expected to be a solid favorite on fight night. . . .
Bound to happen often Sunday: A receiver who drops a pass will get in the face of an official and argue pass interference.