1.) Coach better
2.) Cover the middle of the field.
Clancy Pendergast is an autocrat on defense. He plays man-to-man defense and doesn’t like to make adjustments. But USC never covers the middle of the field and Texas figured it out in the second quarter. I’m guessing WSU coach Mike Leach knows it too.
3.) Change special teams
Does John Baxter ever get checked on special teams by Clay Helton? He also has full control like Pendergast and the defense. The musical punters is a joke but when two guys struggle it means something is not being done right. How about the fact USC probably ruined Chris Tilbey’s confidence by benching him last season and then threw him out there for the Stanford game and expected great results?
4.) Play your youth
With the new redshirt rules, why is USC refusing to try out their 5-star freshmen corners? Either Olaijah Griffin and Isaac Taylor-Stuart are overrated or not ready. Which is it? It’s not like USC is getting stellar play from its current corners.
5.) Help JT Daniels
He’s a good freshman quarterback. He is not Sam Darnold. So don’t make him throw 48 passes a game. Get the running game going. Of course, this will likely happen against Washington State, but it should have happened last week.
USC coaches know Daniels doesn’t like to get hit. So rely more on the run to make him less skittish.
6.) Advise JT Daniels
He’s got all the hype and accolades. So we don’t need to see him with the bandanna and then immediately putting on a hat on the sideline when he comes out of the game like he is in the NFL. It does not help his image.
7.) Get the tailback rotation straight
Stephen Carr was the No. 3 tailback the first two games. Last week, he was No. 2, which means the coaches felt some heat. He should be No. 1.
Clay Helton will say Carr’s back injury prevents him from playing more. Carr said he felt 100 percent after the UNLV game.
8.) Paging Lynn Swann
Does the athletic director address what USC’s identity is as a football program or what he thinks it should be? Swann’s exhibited little leadership with football, other than to grant new contracts to Helton and the coordinators. He’s not earning his salary right now as he lets USC spin toward a disappointing season.
9.) Improve practices
Here’s what an NFL scout who attends USC practices told me: “There is a lot of running around and noise but not a lot gets done in terms of productivity and developing players and helping guys improve their skill set.”
10.) Rush the quarterback. Protect the quarterback.
Two simple things and USC does neither well.