Morning Buzz: USC Circles Its Wagons

I get the sense the powers-that-be at USC athletics would like nothing more than to go into bunker mode and seal themselves off from scrutiny.

Lynn Swann doesn’t speak much to the media but does release tin-ear statements.

Clay Helton only speaks once a week during spring practice.

And I’ve heard Helton is considering ways to cut down media/public access in the fall. He might close practices entirely to the media. He might not want to speak every day. He might think of ways to make the players even more off limits.

That good-old persona Helton displays is feeling the effects of a 5-7 season. Lane Kiffin tried to restrict access after going 7-6 in 2012. When he got fired, Ed Orgeron immediately did away with all the restrictions.

What Swann and Helton don’t realize is hiding doesn’t mask doing a bad job. Especially when you are over your head.

They don’t want to answer questions. No one at USC does. Especially if people want to know why there seats cost more and are getting moved? Or why tuition is going up far more than inflation? Or why USC is completly out of the national conversation in football despite being one of the nation’s marquee programs?

And finally, this video might explain why Swann decided to attend an autograph show last weekend despite running a program in flames.


21 thoughts on “Morning Buzz: USC Circles Its Wagons

  1. Any plans on using your sleuthing skills to find out if Folt plans on taking action on Swann?

    We all know Swann and Helton are terrible at their jobs. Do we really need to hear them address the media? It’s not like they can say anything to make us believe they’re not awful at their jobs.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. helton should never address anything…he just lies, states obtuse and inane comments…
    the asst coaches should do all the interviews
    swann doesn’t lie, he obfuscates and just never does anything productive

    Liked by 4 people

  3. Swann’s autograph story is all over the news. If Folt keeps Swann, then she is effectively saying that it is ok for Swann not only to fail at his job of running the athletic deptartment, but also to publicly disgrace the university in the most ridiculous way.

    This is why I think that any decent president would choose to fire Swann. If she doesn’t, then it will speak volumes about who she is and why the BOT picked her.

    Liked by 6 people

    1. I’m willing to bet she’s already talked to Swann [and already bought his line about how disruptive it would be to make any changes in the Athletic Department before seeing the big strides taken by the football team due to his leadership]……..

      Liked by 3 people

      1. My view is that the new Prez is a rubber stamp for the BOT. She has a lot to clean up before she gets to Swann IMO. If she was a real reformer, she would eliminate about 60% of the BOT which currently is an unmanageable group with some not even qualified.
        I am surprised Dr. Dre is not on the board for his @ $70M. Too many unqualified, disinterested BOT members. Athletics, which is a priority for people on this blog, is not a priority for the BOT in the slightest way.

        Liked by 3 people

  4. Lane Kiffin was a lot of things but he wasn’t stupid. He banned the press because he was under harsh sanctions and had a limited number of players. He asked that injury reports not be included in the team news, as it gave the opponent an advantage in preparation. This news blackout was not anything but strategy, much like Patton in WWII
    There was one reporter who was banned from covering the team because he repeatedly disregarded the rules and made a huge stink about the fact that there were rules. If fact he was signally responsible for the complete shut down of the after practice press briefing.
    He then whined to the Athletic director, whom he loathed, to get his ban lifted. I am pretty sure he never played any team sports and had no idea, other than his anonymous sources, what the game was really about.
    I forget his name it was something like Scoot Dog or another K-9 name (feel free to correct me) but he managed to get himself booted from the games as well. I wonder if he is still working for that local paper?

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Yeah, but Scott’s born and raised here, I think…and, he’s a USC educated consumer…..,perspective. How many of these leaders USC brings in can say that? It takes a lifetime to even come close to understanding the City of Angels….it’s sometimes referred to as our formative years….


      2. Try to avoid the carpetbagger routines, makes us angry….wouldn’t it you? Wherever you’re from….


      1. tebow —Apparently Pete forgot to tell Lane that for the bubble screen to work you need one person to block……

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Truman, I think you’re thinking of Wolf Blitzed, and I am sure I am close. When Ed O took over every reporter was allowed back but he gave false injury reports. He also passed out cookies at the media briefing, which Wolf ate mightily. Also I think Wolf played varsity checkers in high school but that information came from an unknown anonymous player from the band. You may quote her.



    USC AD Lynn Swann charging $220 for autographs amid school crises

    The USC athletic program is in a state of disarray, and many fans are calling for athletic director Lynn Swann to either be fired or step down because of it. If the way he spent his time over the weekend is any indication, Swann is not bothered by that talk.

    As Patrick Hruby of the Los Angeles Times noted, Swann was one of more than a dozen sports personalities and celebritieswho attended a memorabilia show in Washington, D.C., over the weekend. He signed autographs for fans and collectors who paid $220 and up for his signature.

    Meanwhile, USC trustees and senior leaders were meeting in Santa Barbara to discuss some of the many issues surrounding the school, which include the Trojans’ involvement in a recent FBI investigation into college basketball as well as the admissions scandal that has rocked the school. A university spokesperson told Hruby that Swann was invited to the event but was not required to attend, as there was nothing on the agenda that directly related to him.

    That doesn’t make the optics any better. USC is facing some of the most significant issues in school history, and the athletic director is out profiting from an autograph signing.

    Former USC linebacker Ricki Ellison, who won a co-national championship with the Trojans in 1978, was in disbelief.

    “Lynn’s a good guy, but isn’t his salary in the millions?” Ellison asked. “Why does he need to do this? It’s just embarrassing.

    “With all of the issues going on right now, why would anybody support this brand or donate money to this school or send their child to this school? If you’re Lynn Swann, how does [going to an autograph show] gain additional credibility for USC?”

    USC’s football team has taken some major hits in recent months, and Swann should at least be giving off the impression that he is doing everything in his power to fix it. It’s hard for him to make that case when he’s smiling and collecting money from fans while signing photos of himself.


    Lynn Swann wasn’t hired by Max Nikias and the BOT to be an actual athletic director, he was hired to be a figurehead, a puppet to carry out the marching orders for Nikias.

    Lynn Swann is being paid millions of dollars a year by USC to be it’s “athletic director”, a job he had no prior experience with or qualification for when he accepted the position. There were no expectations of Swann to actually run the athletic dept. and that’s why he has never shown any interest or concern for any of USC’s sports programs.

    Lynn Swann is playing with house money, he’s getting paid by USC to do absolutely nothing and that is what was expected of him when he signed on. So when he goes about his business of playing golf, attending signing events and not concerning himself with the mess that is taking place at USC, being the shameless asshole that Lynn Swann is…you can see why he can go about his business without a care in the world of what others think of him or of the terrible job he’s doing as athletic director for USC.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. The new president will not fire Swann or Helton this year. That job belongs strictly to the BOT, as Swann and Helton both owe their employment to the BOT.

    Ms. Folt doesn’t assume her office until July, very close to Fall FB camp. It’s hard to Imagine SUCCXsters Ms. Folt would wack the bozo AD and HFBC just prior to the 2019 FB season. That sort of FB program decision might rudely backfire; and, I doubt Ms. Folt wants to play with FB fan fire so early in her tenure.

    But of course, we’re talking about Clown U, so you just never know when a new SUCCX scandal or NCAA Investigation/Sanction will alter the current status quo.



  8. Then there’s bel-air tech doing what they did 6 years ago believing it’s 1974 and the peckerwood is still doin’ his con….Alford and now Jamie Dixon….go Guerrero


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