As if USC and UCLA needed any more fuel for their decades-long crosstown rivalry, the latest US News Best Colleges ranking has the schools neck-and-neck.
Yep. This year USC and UCLA will not only battle over which campus has the best football team, best basketball squad, or hottest students. They'll have to settle the score over the smartest nerds:
The 2014 version of the rankings, published today, puts both USC and UCLA at number 23 in the nation based on the opinions of academic experts surveyed and other factors.
The L.A. schools shared that rank with Carnegie Mellon University, the University of Virginia and Wake Forest University.
UCLA noted in a statement that that the university “moved up a spot” since last year's ranking. The school argued that US News has …
… a methodology that emphasizes factors that tend to favor private universities, such as endowments, alumni giving and student-faculty ratios.
UCLA officials also sliced the numbers a different way, coming up with a number-two ranking for public universities on the list, tied with Virginia and beat out by number one UC Berkeley, which came in at 20th overall.
The latest rankings put Princeton on top, Harvard in second, and Yale in third. The highest ranking L.A. school was Caltech at number 10.
See the US News top 25 here.
A ranking by Times Higher Education said UCLA was the eighth best school on the planet earlier this year. Last year the publication's “world education rankings” had Caltech at number one.