The Indianapolis Colts are currently outside of the AFC playoff picture looking in, but they have a chance to change that with victory over their divisional rivals, the Tennessee Titans on Thursday night.The 5-3 Colts travel into Tennessee to take on the 6-2 Titans – live on Sky Sports NFL from 1.20am on Friday – in the first of two meetings between the teams over the next three weeks.But can veteran quarterback Philip Rivers lead the Colts to victory? The 38-year-old has thrown for an average of 260.8 yards per game, with 10 touchdowns and seven interceptions in his first year in Indianapolis.- Advertisement – A look back at the action and talking points from Week Nine of the NFL season GMF‘s Peter Schrager isn’t quite so convinced, even suggesting the Colts might look to move on from their big-money free agency acquisition.“I don’t think Rivers is having this great season. It might even be the end of the road for him,” Schrager added.“There has been some good games from Rivers, don’t get me wrong, and I don’t think Frank Reich is thinking about pulling him but, if you talk to Colts fans, they’re not overwhelmed by Rivers this season – there is too much up and down for a veteran quarterback. 4:19 A look back at the action and talking points from Week Nine of the NFL season 2:35 On NFL Overtime, Kay Adams, Vince Young and Phoebe Schecter choose the NFL teams they believe have been the best so far this season Good Morning Football‘s Kyle Brandt says Rivers’ play over the final few weeks of the 2020 season could define how his potentially Hall of Fame career is ultimately viewed.“He has been good, he has been not so good; 10 touchdowns and seven interceptions is fine,” Brandt said. “But, over the next several weeks, there is so much more that hangs in the balance for Rivers than the Colts’ playoff push. – Advertisement –
Despite a small dip in October sales for the USC Pertusati Bookstore, officials said the store’s retail sales show signs of recovery, consistent with the nationwide trend.According to Thomson Reuters’ tally of 30 major chain stores, national retail sales for October rose 1.8 percent compared to last October. Though inventory numbers have not yet been finalized, Daniel Archer, director of the Pertusati University Bookstore, said sales in the month were down about 0.7 percent — $250,000 less than the $3.7 million earned last October.Book Drop · The USC Pertusati Bookstore recorded a 0.7 percent drop in October sales, but officials are optimistic sales will increase over the course of the coming months. – Geo Tu | Daily TrojanArcher said the relatively small size of the dip is significant. Officials were prepared for worse, he said, particularly considering USC played less home football games this semester.“The fact that we had these numbers even though we had more football games last year actually makes it a victory,” Archer said.Archer added he was confident the sales would increase by the USC’s final home game against Arizona on Dec. 5. Last year, the bookstore made $3.3 million in sales in November and $3.9 million in December, Archer said. This year, the bookstore is hoping to at least match last years’ numbers.“Flat is the new ‘up’ in retail,” Archer said.Home games tend to be more lucrative for the bookstore, Archer said, generating an average of $600,000 in sales during the week as opposed to about $200,000 for away games or bye weeks.Alumni and fan purchases account for most of those sales, he said, so the bookstore focuses on selling merchandise such as USC gifts and clothing.“The Trojan brand right now is one of the hottest in the country,” Archer said. “The Pete Carroll era has been a big piece of why the brand’s popularity has grown. In the end, it’s all driven by Trojan fanatics.”The sales can also be affected by the success of the football team, according to Lars Perner, assistant professor of clinical marketing at USC.“Clearly the better the team is doing the better sales will be,” Perner said. “It’s a very critical situation. The more we win and the more national media coverage we get, the more demand there is.”Though USC has lost two games this year, Archer said the three upcoming home games will generate substantial revenue for the bookstore.Although retail sales declined only slightly, textbook sales took a larger hit.“There’s something I refer to as ‘the textbook crisis in America,’” Archer said. “Prices have gotten to the point where students are looking at foregoing buying textbooks.”Textbook sales, which are strongest at the beginning of each semester, were down about 14 percent compared to 2008, while other book sales were down about 8 percent, according to Raymond McDermott, the manager of course materials for USC Bookstores. Used textbook sales remained about the same.For the last couple of years, textbook sales have leveled off as more students turn to alternative sources for textbooks, McDermott said. But, he added, the state of the economy last year contributed to a more significant drop than usual.But finally, sales are beginning to improve, he said.“It’s only now that most retails are starting to see any kind of pickup,” McDermott said. “The holidays might not be as good as previous years. Even though the recession has ended, the job situation is still horrendous and people aren’t spending on books because of it.”According to Archer, the book sales and retail sales are independent of each other. Although there are spikes in textbook sales at the beginning of each semester and in general merchandise sales before football games, the bookstore’s computer sales remain more or less constant throughout the year.