We hear so much about Clay Helton’s contract and how it made firing him a stumbling block.
So why did USC school president Carol Folt supposedly turn down an offer from a donor to pay off the contract? She didn’t want to be beholden to a rich booster.
But you are only beholden if you allow yourself to be. USC would not survive without donations. It’s up to the administration to say no to granting special favors. Folt could have made that a condition of taking the offer.
- USC almost beat a ranked team on the road Thursday night for the first time since 2010. That tells you something about Andy Enfield, because he’s never done it in seven seasons.
Another frustrating fact typical of an Enfield team: Onyeka Okongwu is projected as an NBA lottery pick and he had one field goal attempt in the final 15 minutes. He still had 23 points even though the offense is not exactly geared to him.
Enfield’s offense usually consists of shooting a 3-pointer in crunch time.
- Will former USC quarterback Jack Sears remain committed to San Diego State? He committed before Rocky Long resigned and was replaced by Brady Hoke.
- The Holiday Bowl was nearly a month ago and linebacker Juliano Falaniko has not apologized for kicking an Iowa player in the head. Remember that when you hear TV pundits talk about what a man of integrity Clay Helton is.
- I feel bad for former USC offensive lineman Pat Harlow, the head coach at JSerra in San Juan Capistrano. Four players have transferred out of the school including safety New Zealand Williams, who has a scholaship offer from Georgia.
- Toby Page played quarterback at USC from 1965-67. He is probably best known for a play where he did not pass the ball, calling an audible and handing off to O.J. Simpson on his famous 64-yard touchdown run in the 1967 USC-UCLA game.
There was a joke among the coaches when Page practiced that one pass would be a perfect spiral, one would go over a receiver’s head and one might go in the grass.
During one practice, a frustrated John McKay said, “Page if you spent less time worrying about your wife and kid, you’d be a better quarterback.”
McKay definitely would need to change if he coached today.
- If you want another example of how things have changed, when John Hubbard was USC president in the 1970’s, he used to have a locker in the coaches’ locker room alongside John McKay, Marv Goux, Rod Dedeaux and Bob Boyd, among others. Hubbard was a big raquetball player and supporter of athletics and having a locker usually kept him infomed of what was going on in the athletic dept.
- Given Hubbard’s closeness to the coaches, imagine his fury when he was blindsided by media reports McKay was going to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers after the 1975 season. McKay did not tell Hubbard before the news went public.
- Back in the 1960’s, it was common for USC football players to be met by girl friends or dates on campus after flying back from a road game. Below is linebacker Jeff Smith after USC returned from its 34-0 victory over Washington in 1965. Note the players also wore a USC blazer and tie.