USC Morning Buzz: The Conference Of Champions Is Sinking

Let’s talk about the Conference of Champions otherwise known as the Pac-12.

  • No team in the College Football Playoff.
  • No team in college basketball’s Elite Eight.
  • No team in the College World Series.

Every other Power 5 conference has a team in the College World Series. Thanks, UCLA!

The SEC has four of the eight teams. You can’t claim the SEC baseball teams only got there because they don’t play anyone like some Pac-12 diehards say about football.

And while the Pac-12 flails about, Larry Scott makes $4.8 million, flies on chartered jets and stays in a suite worth $7,500 a night at the Aria Resort and Casino during the Pac-12 Tournament in Las Vegas.

  • Meanwhile, UC Santa Barbara baseball coach Andrew Checketts has reportedly withdrawn from consideration for the USC job. This essentially means Andy Stankiewicz of Grand Canyon is the only legitimate candidate at the moment. USC also interviewed Eric Valenzuela, but he accepted the Long Beach State job on Saturday.

It would be easy to say Checketts saw he needed to withdraw after meeting with Lynn Swann but he also could be more interested in the Oregon or Oregon State jobs.

Either way, an offer to Stankiewicz should come shortly.

25 thoughts on “USC Morning Buzz: The Conference Of Champions Is Sinking

  1. The PAC 12 athletic directors allowed their football programs to fester in mediocrity for years, by hiring coaches with finesse, non-physical mentalities, led by Clueless Clay Helton of course.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. They also collectively demonstrated a perhaps terminal lack of wisdom (in marked contrast to the sense shown by the SEC most notably, but also all of the other power five conferences to one degree or another, as born out by the results) in not recognizing that kingdom without a king is hollow and certain to contract, if not be outright overrun (pun partially intended, as in it just occurred to my dumb @$$ that that was rather, if unintentionally, apt)…the SEC will do anything necessary to promote the interests of Alabama in football and Kentucky in basketball…but not the conference with the most need for employing such tactics (i.e. when you are in the wrong time zone so already up against it in an accelerated media/dollar age)…the blurb Scott ran about a week ago about Coach McKay having, unsurprisingly, seen the writing on the wall 40+ years ago (that USC should put the PAC in its place by reorganizing, at least for football purposes, or go the Notre Dame route) was bulls eye on point…and if the university were properly run, the circumstances still militate in favor of a similar approach (as others have now been noting for a few years…I believe Mike Garrett saw this and might have went that direction had he not been forced to depart – but if Garrett stayed and Haden/Swann were never on the scene as ADs is a whole different, long, and miserable tale isn’t it?)…I thought when the NCAA came calling the school should have given Pete whatever he wanted, told the NCAA to pound sand (and anyone in the PAC who wasn’t on board), and beaten the wave of the future (which we’re seeing now with top high school athletes now bypassing the former pardigm and going overseas) by going independent from the NCAA (and being prepared to use that “Treasury at Delos” war chest to good effect in federal court, if push came to shove), scheduling whoever would play them and/or staging internal scrimmages with NFL scouting departments being provided free sideline/pressbox accommodations…

      Liked by 4 people

      1. Ah, Mule with the very, very selective response – not in the mood to talk about administrations today eh? Hee-haw…at least you’re consistent (hint: not a compliment)…and apologies for troubling you with reading more than a bulletpoint….

        So to dumb down for you Mule: USC should leave the PAC to its own stupidity…worst case scenario, we will still play in the Rose Bowl as often as UCLA…the game, not the stadium, oh you of the September-December kiddie pool permit…

        Liked by 2 people

      2. It’s about MONEY. SEC schools pay recruiting asst’s huge money. That sob that played & coached at Cal & joined Sark at UW ended up at Alabama at $1,000,000 a yr because he knew how to recruit the West Coast.
        Mr. Larry Scott makes in excess of $4,000,000 a yr. Has 10 asst’s making $500,000 a year. TEN! Pays $8,000,000+ a year rent. Had to move to SF to ‘be closer to talent’. Bullsh1t. Nobody in their right mind needs or wants to live in SF. Except Mr. Larry Scott. Hmmmm…
        The PAC school Presidents & AD’s had an opportunity to send him packing but renewed his contract. Bullsh1t.
        The PAC needs 2 marquis games at 4pm every SAT to broadcast to the East coast & Midwest in prime time. Never a Thursday or Friday game. Never. No PAC games started after 5pm. Ever. Game times should be scheduled at the beginning of the year to allow alumni a chance to plan their schedule. I sure as hell am not going into Berkeley or downtown L.A. at night. Do you guys know it costs $500 to park within 11 blocks of the Memorial Coliseum in Berkeley on game day? Which means you get to leave your car SOMEHERE & take public transportation. HaHaHa
        The PAC is a mess & it has been allowed to happen. Are people afraid of the tennis coach from Harvard? Is he advancing the PAC? Questions need to be asked and answered.

        Liked by 4 people

      3. Big Bear:

        Great job of articulating the problem…amazing to think that the powers that be in Dixie can get this, but those on the west coast can’t or won’t…

        We don’t need the old wild west days of the Pac-10 and SWC of the early ’80s (when each conference had seasons where it could barely find a + .500 squad to represent in their respective New Year’s Day slot – btw Mule, one of those years resulted in a 6-4-1 Bruins team in the Rose Bowl the game!)…but a certain amount of proper incentive being factored into the mix would be nice…

        Liked by 1 person

      4. James — If I read you correctly —and I hope I do — you are the first person with the guts to suggest that USC would’ve been better off sticking with Garrett than hiring “Political Pat.” To paraphrase Michael Corleone, we needed a “wartime A. D.” —not somebody who wanted to play nice with the NCAA. I’ll always wonder what would have happened if we sued the NCAA in Federal Court for it’s complete lack of due process. My guess is the case wouldn’t have gotten any further than the discovery stage before the NCAA cried ‘uncle’…..


      5. Cal75—
        You could always attend Cal games by doing what I used to do —-walk from 5224 Proctor in the Oakland Hills to College Avenue and….keep on going till you get to University. You’ll be plenty hungry for a very fine Cal Hot Dog by the time you get there….


      6. MG, my fenceline is 600′ & sometimes it’s hard to walk it. I have stenosis & just the thought of walking to the back of the property & returning(1/4th mile) is my big decision of the day.


        Liked by 1 person

      7. Sorry to hear about the stenosis, old bud. So many college athletes from our generation now live with one condition or another that keeps them from being their old wild men selves. The guys I used to put the gloves on with were all toughies who played high school football and college basketball —-and each of them now has knee or back or neck problems.
        It’s fu**ed up……

        Liked by 1 person

  2. It sounds like a case of conference envy. “Thanks UCLA” sounds so petty. While we are not having a banner year as a conference, there are still 12 schools to blame. As much as I like making UCLA the goat of anything, they were in it for the longest. Some days the runner trips and other days the runner rips. That’s the nature of the game.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. SCooter,

    Why are you thanking ucla? We all know the meaning of ucla, U Clowns Lose Again. More importantly why don’t you put blame on ASU and Stanford as well. They were in the Super Regionals as well. As far as the PAC 12 is concerned, it is only as strong as its leader. The commish is not a leader, just a leach. He can’t lead due to his up his a$s. A strong leader looks at the immediate and long range future of the league. He stands for schools that are in trouble and stands for better deals. The PAC 12 has been left behind in bowl games, revenue, respect, scheduing, and protection. The commish is worthless. Until that sack of feces is let go, then the PAC 12 will flounder and that will reflect on the schools floundering.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Funny how SC didn’t even bother with the TCU asst head coach, maybe it’s because Rice also wants him and they didn’t want to get into a bidding war or is it more likely that SC has no idea who he is even though he coached at SC.

    Once again, SC just fucks up and goes cheap.

    Florida Gulf Coast for basketball
    Grand Canyon for baseball
    Williams for women’s tennis
    Portland for women’s volleyball
    Gomer with ZERO head coaching experience for football
    No previous head coaching experience for men’s volleyball
    No previous head coaching experience for women’s golf
    One would bet that the interim water polo coach will get the gig, his previous experience is a head coach at Loyola High School

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Budda,

      Funny that you mention LoyoIa, I went there. I was there when they just started water polo. After many years, Loyola is a power house in water polo. Vavic’s son went there and a few other players that went to SC played at Loyola. I will admit if I am wrong, but I think the interim water polo coach could do well at SC. If I am wrong, Iike I said, I will admit it. Is that fair? Do me a favor, if he is hired, give the guy a chance. Let us see if he can get the job done. If not, then I will agree with you about getting someone from the college ranks. Thank you.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. I hope he does well, if he gets the job. The point is, look at where SC is getting it’s coaches and how many of them have zero head coaching experience

        Liked by 1 person

  5. I have it on good faith and great resources that Valenzuela referred to his interview w/USC as amateur. He was interviewed by 3 people from administration (Swann, Lopes, and some lower management scrub who was recently an intern, Jeff Fucci). The 90 minute meeting was filled with questions similar to that of a parent interviewing a personal hitting coach…. None of the administrators seemed to know how baseball actually worked at the University level, and thus Valenzuela jumped on the LB State offer… Not that he would have been the first choice, but just another example of how amateur this search is. Not surprised Chicketts withdrew… He saw what was going on here… and when USC discussed salary, the numbers were about 60% of what Oregon and Oregon State are working with…

    Liked by 1 person

  6. According to Jon Wilner(sp?), 2020 is make or break for the PAC. A very strong year for recruiting & if 8/10 4* & 5* leave the West Coast it might very well send the PAC into a tailspin corkscrewed into the ground.
    There really is no reason for a top athlete to play ball east of the Rockies. Cal & USC have 2\3 top NFL payrolls. Athletes may not be worshipped but they are respected, esp if they go to class. These 18yr olds have no idea of the sh1tty weather they’ll face or the complete disdain & lack of respect the local residents & students have for ANYTHING assoc’d with California. A lot of these 18yr olds think that when they go to to a big out of state fb school they’ll be treated just like they were in HS in CA. Lol.
    Would anybody here want to go fishing with a couple of locals on a remote Georgia river? Hey Jethro, want to go fishin’ Sat? Just you & me & a couple of the locals.
    There is a culture shock in different regions of the USA. How many Californians who go to Nebraska, Oklahoma, or SEC schools go back to live there after their college or pro careers end? Be interesting to find that out. If they don’t then they have partially or fully wasted their college experience in preparation for life after sports.


    1. MG-That is correct – I suggested the same on the Peristyle a couple of years back, and have felt that way from the outset – the way you just phrased it (war time versus peace time general) instinctively occurred to me at the time he (and Pete essentially) were pressured out…and I also laugh at the indignation people express for him (not that apparently some of it isn’t justified, but you what I mean – I’m directing it at those who tried to make him into a pariah) having hired Kiff – the hiring of Kiff, because it in turn meant the return of EdO, was the most important factor in enabling USC to weather the sanctions – and Garrett somehow knew that that was what had to be done (ie hiring what was then the best recruiting duo, off a hot first season in Knoxville where they almost upset Bama). I agree entirely with/subscribe to myself the logic train of “what if” a “Garrett-like” figure had remained in charge who didn’t possess Haden’s hubris (surely the NCAA will be reasonable with me) and would have backed the NCAA down, to include going to federal court (as you put it, “Uncle!” would have quickly ensued, just like it did when they even had a quick thought about going after Bama or the Buckeyes…hell, even Penn State and the Ducks backed them down)…or, in my extreme fantasy, they would have just simply threatened to withdraw from the NCAA (younger folks probably don’t realize that the NCAA’s governance of female athletics largely started off that way in the late ’70s/early ’80s) and made themselves available as a beyond marquee anytime holiday getaway for any and all takers (and done it in combination with courting the NFL, which wouldn’t exactly require much arm-twisting I don’t think and might have even bankrolled it behind the scenes)…

      Liked by 1 person

      1. A bunch of bold suggestions —-I’d love to see the look on Pat’s face if you were discussing these possibilities with him face to face back in the day. He probably would’ve been flashing that thin lipped smile —the one that communicated patience with his lessers.
        On the other front, Garrett was never given his due. He was a hard nosed administrator who didn’t mind fighting for what he thought was right and fair —- and, when he looked around for support, he found himself all alone. USC has been paying ever since.

        Liked by 1 person

  7. Ahh, the millennial and snowflakes on the West Coast coming out of high school are soft, much softer than kids from other regions of the country. These punks out here all feel entitled and don’t want to put in the work.


  8. Whoa, Yimmy, Yimmy, Yimmy suggests Felony U go independent.

    Ah, Mule with the very, very selective response – not in the mood to talk about administrations today eh? Hee-haw…at least you’re consistent (hint: not a compliment)…and apologies for troubling you with reading more than a bulletpoint….

    So to dumb down for you Mule: USC should leave the PAC to its own stupidity…worst case scenario, we will still play in the Rose Bowl as often as UCLA…the game, not the stadium, oh you of the September-December kiddie pool permit…


    Yimmy, Yimmy, Yimmy wants to take WallyWorld U independent – please, please Promise?!

    In fact Yimmy, why not start a new Div 1 Athletic Assoc. to replace the NCAA. Felony U could spearhead the vanguard for new rules – like cheating to win and getting caught w/b respectable and admired. Or, selling Sports scholarships for major wampum to underserving fat cat offspring w/b considered good business. Or even better, recruit illiterate thugs for the FB with no show class liability & weekly paychecks for no show jobs.

    Let’s reminisce Yimmy, the last time Felony U met an elite SEC team, the bozos were humiliated before millions of FB fans in prime time 52 – 6.

    The SUCCster’s not only failed to score a TD but kicked a 48 yard FG down 36 points. LFOL huh Yimmy. The bozos shocked the world!!!!

    Yimmy, for the first time in 112 years the big three (3) bozo teams FB, BB and Baseball had sub .500 winning pct seasons.

    But Yimmy, if SUCCX goes independent, think of all the Div III and II cupcake games that SUCCX could schedule, zero competition ever – like lions vs starving children.

    Go Yimmy, quit yapping about it and take the trip, stumble and fall Felony U independent. Dr. Geo. Tyndall wants his job back.


  9. The Mule kicks…did we hit a sensitive spot? Didn’t like UCLA getting in the national headlines for the same or similar types of crimes? I take it not , as you then hit us with your Mule Drool…but we Won’t Get Muled Again….

    So let’s take a little walk down memory lane shall we? Not that, given reading more than a bullet point at a time is obviously a hard day’s night for you, unless properly sensitive it should appear! more drool for the Mule…let’s go back to those thrilling days far removed…all the way back to the mid-point of the Reagan administration (or to put it in sports context – before the Bears were Super Bowl shuffling…or there were such entities as Carolina Panthers, Toronto Raptors, Tampa Bay Rays, San Jose Sharks…or night games at Wrigley…or Camden Yards in Baltimore was even built…) – look it up in a history book, or better yet, watch a YouTube of it…wait, wait…1985 (okay, January 1, 1986)…the last time UCLA won a Rose Bowl (to go back to winning one that actually mattered one must go back yet a full decade further! Hee-haw!)…that little old game played in the stadium you RENT September-December…so I guess we could refer to it as YOUclaTube, since were it not for that…

    Now, back to those national headlines…heinous Mule…right on top of that Michigan gag (although again, you must have gotten a little excited at the thought of Michigan-UCLA sounding almost like a Rose Bowl matchup)…

    Now, we know that, since you do tend to engage in some high magnitude “c” smoking, and get really excited about things like 3 win seasons over the worst USC squad since “I Like Ike” era, you just might, in your mulish way, protest “the Rose Bowl doesn’t matter in the age of the playoffs!” But that would raise the specter of Jim Mora (Sr. – speaking of Moras, Jim – shall we? You will fondly as the short-lived Chocolate Chip Era comes and goes) – “Playoffs? Playoffs!” Hee-haw! Now, this coming year, it might just be USc getting excited over a three win season…but that’s a whole different kettle of (smelly) fish…


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