Clay Helton Says Defense Tired; Lynn Swann Shirks Duty

This Clay Helton quote got scant attention Saturday night when talking about going for it on fourth down: “Our defense was tiring a bit.”

Wait a minute. I heard all spring and summer from people that the strength program was amazing and turning everyone into Superman.

But the defense was tiring . . . against Fresno State.

  • Meanwhile, the New York Times takes a look at USC and here’s what Lynn Swann said: “You’ve got to give people a chance to execute their game plan, get their people in and make it work. That’s where we are with Clay. It would be great if you hired the coach, everything the coach needed was in place, and they won instantly and it took off. It doesn’t normally happen that way.”

The fear of being accountable with his own hire as football coach keeps Swann from making a move.

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60 thoughts on “Clay Helton Says Defense Tired; Lynn Swann Shirks Duty

      1. @67, yeah I know, I sat through all of those home games and some away games, many is a drunken haze because you couldn’t watch that crap sober.

        Like

      1. If the President Carol Fault can’t see through Lynn Swann’s bull shit, then she’s just like the rest of the Dumb Mother Fuckers sitting on the board

        Like

    1. Maybe if the offense didn’t snap the ball with 25 seconds left with 4 minutes to go you don’t have to go for it on 4th down up by 8!!

      Helton is to blame but Harrell ain’t no football genius either. There’s a reason why Mike Leach never hired him!

      #BringbackWilcoxORkiffen

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Listen here lad.
        You canned Wilcox & he’s moved on to greener pastures. You just up & leave him out of the discussion.

        SC is going to have a lot more problems in the back half of the schedule. Can you imagine if ND loads 32+ minutes onto SC’s D in October when SC will be more tired & banged up than it was with Fresno?
        I have seen the Air Raid up close. IIRC, first year CAL implemented it, 8 guys on D hit the road. But It can be entertaining. That’s about all.
        Added bonus: you’ll never hire a good DC with the Air Raid & a HC on the hot seat. Pray Pendergasp stays.
        Going to be a very long season for SC.

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    2. swannie is talking about himself and his abilities as an AD…hellton is the elephant he can’t move or get around thus the lies about all the promised culture change, etc…

      Liked by 1 person

    3. Hey Scott, why don’t you give it a rest. Every time I read on of your posts, all I ever read is negative comments about USC, the coaches and the whole program in general. It’s pretty obvious to everyone you don’t like Helton. STFU.

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  1. Helton has had “his people in to make it work” for 3 years.

    Swann can’t keep calling a do-over.

    Why didn’t the NYT ask Swann why he gave Helton a $15 million buyout?

    Liked by 5 people

  2. Well…
    Your defense gets tired when you play schoolyard offense and don’t pound the ball running.
    It also gets tired when your stubborn brain dead DC doesn’t substitute.
    It also gets tired when you practice in shorts, tennis shoes and no pads for the majority of fall practice.

    And to those idiots who say that hard practices result in injuries, did you say the same thing when PC as the head coach ?

    Liked by 8 people

    1. karma — Let’s not get carried away with Helton’s lame, lying justification for keeping the ball on 4th and 1. The truth is the defense didn’t look any more tired than the offense (actually they played every bit as well —or poorly, if you prefer– as the offense in the second half). My point is nothing Helton says is the truth —he gets away with absolute bullsh*t every week —and the lame Los Angeles press corps buys every dumb thing he says.
      Helton went for it cuz he wanted to show how tough he is —what a brilliant gambler he is. But —as I said in an earlier post —there’s nothing ballsy about deciding to go for it on 4th and 1 if you don’t have what it takes to get it done. Helton was doing what he always does —-closing his eyes and making a wish, he didn’t have a play.

      Liked by 7 people

      1. Helton doesn’t know what he is talking about- missed tackles and mental mistakes are characteristic of a 1st game. As opposed to him trying to blame fatigue. What won’t change is his inability to make good decisions during a game. He doesn’t even have to simulate situations with the team. Here’s an example: on 4th and 2 near midfield, you punt and pin the other team back and make them go the length of the field.

        #fireHeltonLastYear
        #theDBswillgetbetterwithexperienceandbattledwelltheentiregame

        Liked by 4 people

      2. if Wolf is correct and Clay actually called the play, then we are really in deep shit. Harrell should have stood up in the press box and walked out on Helton. He is there to make those decisions, maybe not to go for it or not, but to call a specific play in that situation. IMO, the Air Raid is bullshit, USC offense looked the same as last year and Tee Martin. In order to control tempo of game you have to control the line of scrimmage. Translation – big people knocking down people and advancing the ball on the ground. That opens up the passing game. How many teams have won the National Championship running the friggin Air Raid? Even Owns can answer that one.

        Liked by 7 people

      3. M. L. —I am waiting for Harrell to stop being an “enthusiastic genius” and stand up to Helton like a man. It’s obvious Helton wants to redeem himself by running around the sidelines and acting like the Head Coach —but there is something really wrong when a coach calls time outs, meets with the players…and the players go back on the field de-energized. And that’s what’s happening over the last 2 years every time our head coach gives the team face time during a game. Helton —for his own sake and the sake of the team—- needs Harrell on the sidelines. He can stand there himself if he wants —but he can’t be seen or heard.

        Liked by 5 people

      1. gt —The truth is we have a defensive coordinator who fears using his second string players and—based on his quote about NOT wanting Slovis to play “like he’s Superman” —a Head Coach who doesn’t trust his quarterback to make plays….
        #Helton’sCoachingPhilosphy:FearOfTheUnknown

        Liked by 2 people

      1. M. L. — After every first game Helton always says “we need to tighten some stuff up.” It’s like he hasn’t had all spring and all fall. It reminds me of what the Red Cross says every time there’s a disaster and they can’t get into the affected area –“we don’t have the means for delivering supplies to disaster areas.”

        Liked by 2 people

    1. 67 –In many ways it wasn’t a win. But it could be the high point of the season if Helton keeps the wraps on Slovis on Saturday and beyond —let the kids play…
      #It’sWhatTheFrickingAirRaidIsAllAbout….

      Liked by 3 people

      1. I seem to recall he had quite a collection of high caliber NFL talent on-hand when he was first given the permanent job…and any honest person can only admit that even that wasn’t enough – it took a generational talent in Sam to snatch victory from Gomer’s jaws of defeat…

        Just more excuse-making by Swann…

        Nothing will change until these two are sent packing (along with Clancy) and the school devotes the resources (smart people with necessary war chest to entice)…

        Either they will…or we follow the other once-great programs into the dustbin (that would appear to be the betting favorite in my estimation)…

        Liked by 5 people

      2. MG-
        Was at least glad to see Dan Weber return more to the form of what he was like 5 years ago or so in his “Just Saying” (this time “Just Asking”) column…
        Guessing it just means that even RA has figured out that there’s no more sense in trying milk numbers out of sunshine-pumping – time to surreptitiously slide back to the more critical side…easy to accomplish (I maintain the belief that Dan never really changed – he sees exactly what’s going on – this most recent article touches every sensitive nerve, just like he used to do)…
        BTW-No one yet has congratulated EdO and Geaux-jans on being by far the most impressive SEC team on opening weekend…don’t be surprised if this isn’t the year they unseat Bama for that division…
        Also-Jalen Hurts – in case anyone forgot about him…that’s the way you want your QB to play in these types of offenses, and that’s the skillset you need…otherwise, you have to go pro set and have an offensive line that can maintain a pocket as well as get you one yard or so when you need it on the ground…

        Liked by 4 people

      3. James — I can’t agree. I think Helton is on to something big. Very big. Refrain from physical practices —and then expect your team to outphysical the other team when the game is on the line. It’s a whole new concept.
        #OtherCoachesHaven’tCaughtOnYet

        Liked by 2 people

      4. 67 —I hated that prediction, too. And I think what scares us most about it is ….we think it very well could be true.
        #Obviously,RecruitsDo

        Liked by 2 people

  3. Here’s the final paragraph from the NY Times –
    ===========================================================================
    After Pola-Mao’s game-saving interception, even the act of taking a knee was not simple.

    Helton placed Slovis in the shotgun instead of under center because the Trojans never practice direct snaps. On the snap, Slovis bobbled the ball before clutching it and dropping to a knee — a play that made a few hearts skip in what remained of the crowd, and also embodied how tenuous a grasp Helton, and Swann, seem to have on their jobs.
    ============================================================================
    note the lack of skill per Helton in not having Slovis able to take a snap ‘under center’ because they’ve never practiced it. I thought this was supposed to be fixed after last year with Daniels never taking a snap under center?

    Helton has no plan whatsoever for: 2nd half adjustments, coaching linemen so they’re not expected to play every down and are physically shot by game 8, not considering coaching a QB to take a snap under center, continuing the comic book show of no one watching the players’ jerseys numbers,

    Helton s good looking truly starstruck goofy with that ‘ah shucks’ baseball cap always stuck on his head

    Liked by 4 people

      1. President Folt texted Helton after game —“Hope you’ll consider a lifetime appointment —so we can move forward with added emphasis on other things.”

        Liked by 2 people

  4. Swann said “It would be great if you hired the coach, everything the coach needed was in place, and they won instantly and it took off. It doesn’t normally happen that way.” It happened that way with Chris Petersen. He was 14-0 in his first season at Boise State. There is no telling what he could have done in his first season at SC with all that talent. Thank you Pat Haden.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. I seem to recall he had quite a collection of high caliber NFL talent on-hand when he was first given the permanent job…and any honest person can only admit that even that wasn’t enough – it took a generational talent in Sam to snatch victory from Gomer’s jaws of defeat…

      Just more excuse-making by Swann…

      Nothing will change until these two are sent packing (along with Clancy) and the school devotes the resources (smart people with necessary war chest to entice)…

      Either they will…or we follow the other once-great programs into the dustbin (that would appear to be the betting favorite in my estimation)…

      Liked by 3 people

      1. James —All Trojan fans should be rooting for the appearance of one of Tolkien’s “eucatastrophes” —-the sudden, unexplainable transformation of a doomsday scenario into a happy ending.
        #LikeUrbanMeyerWalkingIntoHelton’sOffice&KickingHimOut…
        #…Declaring”I’mTheCoachNow”….
        #[…ThenAuthorizingPlayersToBeatUpFoltAndSwann]…..

        Liked by 2 people

    2. The ‘skinny’ on Petersen is that he didn’t seem all that excited on taking the HC job at USC. The word is he didn’t like to deal with media and that was undergirded in that loss he had @ NV when he said he couldn’t believe all the media – in Reno? It seemed he wasn’t too enthused in facing the 2nd largest 4th estate market instead of what constitutes a ‘press briefing’ in Boise-ID.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Alv — I bet that Haden’s recollection of the Chris Petersen interview is bullsh*t. My guess is that Petersen explained his “discipline first” approach to football and Haden, looking for a Pete Carroll clone, was unimpressed. What happened next was the beginning of the end for Trojan football….and Haden himself….

        Liked by 1 person

      2. He wanted more control than Haden was willing to give him, he does not like all the media attention and I don’t think Haden was all that serious anyway since he went right to UDUB and hired the drunk

        Liked by 2 people

  5. Mike ‘maybe’ per Petersen but I do know he is no fan of the ‘4th estate’ BTW take a look at this zinger per USC and Helton from the Mercury News Jon Wilner
    ———————————————————————————————————————
    Oh, and lest we forget:

    USC coach Clay Helton did his best to lose to Fresno State with poor clock management and worse play-calling — that fourth-down decision left the Hotline dumbfounded — but his defense saved the victory with a late interception in the end zone.

    Had it not, USC’s season would be off the rails already.
    ————————————————————————————————————————

    He embedded a link to a ‘twitter’ feed of that botched 4 and 4 attempt late in the game. I so want this fool gone and ake his baseball cap with him.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s so amazing that Helton doesn’t recognize his limitations. He really thought that he and Callaway and his little brother could outcoach Shaw and Peterson and Whittingham (not to mention Saban and Meyer)…..
      #ICan’tPutIntoWordsHowMuchIDreadTheAlabamaGame….

      Liked by 2 people

  6. “You’ve got to give people a chance to execute their game plan, get their people in and make it work. That’s where we are with Clay.”

    When Clay Helton was first hired, it was “we’re going to be physical and run the ball” like the old days.
    Now he’s changed to an air-raid offense while NEVER executing his (so called original) game plan.
    These kids deserve better than what they signed up for.

    Liked by 4 people

      1. Yeah – why would anyone, especially linemen sign up for this train wreck? John Jackson last year made a very cogent point specific to the mess Helton has made. He said that Helton doesn’t coach let alone prep the linemen. They’re not strong enough or sharp enough or big enough to outlast their opponents and thus they’re overused because the backups are even less prepared. Then he uses them every game because sad to say, every game is a nail biter. In the past, less talented teams were mostly played by the 2nd string.Nnot now not since Helton took over. Then by game 8 – 9 it’s over….they’re shot and worse for them their own ‘highlight’ to get any NFL notice is minimal to none. So aks yourself why would anyone, especially linemen, choose USC with this sap with his baseball cap as head coach?

        Liked by 3 people

  7. Yes – The Coliseum is sort of like Tombstone and we’re praying for Urban/Kurt Russell to come into Helton’s office like the scene with Billy Bob Thornton where he takes the game over (“Damn right you’re scared”)…need him to bring a Huckleberry along to be his successor as well…Nick Saban as Johnny Ringo…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. James — Yes! Nick Saban can play Johnny Ringo all he wants ….if we hire “Doc” Holliday to shoot it out with him….
      #…[DocTakesRingoOutBeforeRingo’sGunClearsHolster]…

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Urban comes in for two years wins a title and turns it over to a Doc Holliday Huckleberry … barring that we are Romans in the Balkan provinces looking towards Constantinople (whatever form that takes – for me it’s Colorado Avalanche hockey, which after some wandering in the desert may be on the verge of restoring a once proud organization – hey AD here’s a crazy idea…why not go study or hire consultants to study what we called in the Army “what right looks like” … shocking a man who played for John McKay and Chuck Noll should have to be told this).

        Liked by 2 people

      2. MG-We have the same thing in a law office (both in mentorship but also “in the file”)…I seem to recall we discussed that where the coach is concerned vis-a-vis having seen what EdO did firsthand and being surrounded by living reminders (never mind the trophy cases – just talk to the former players and coaches)…

        Liked by 1 person

    2. That would be so righteous and bitchen to have Kurt Russell as our head coach. He knows more about football than Helton. Russell played in minor league baseball. He comes in as Snake Pliskon.

      James thank you for a great thought.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Well Mr. Swann, you should not have to go to Wikipedia to know that coach Helton has been on staff since Kiffin was coach. So just how long do we wait for the chips to fall into place?
    Actually coach Helton is so much like a Disney sports-comedy film, that I’m starting to think they’re remaking Gus the Kicking Mule. This time instead of a mule, they have a hard headed Aussie kicking.

    Liked by 1 person

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