USC Morning Buzz: A Succession Plan That Fell Apart

I wrote back in January that former USC player Kris Richard was a candidate to be hired as defensive coordinator.

But a source now tells me the former NFL defensive coordinator was contacted by USC with a plan to bring him aboard and eventually make him the head coach. Richard was offered the defensive coordinator’s job and told he would be the USC head coach-in-waiting.

So what happened?

“Kris wanted the head-coaching job now, he didn’t want to wait,” the source said. “So ultimately, he turned them down.”

Personally, I think it would be awkward for Richard to be defensive coordinator while knowing if the team loses it would help him become a head coach. There is a school of thought, however, that Mike Bohn will make a move even if USC has success this season.

I’m sure Graham Harrell is happy Richard turned down USC because he probably envisions himself as a head-coach-in-waiting with his three-year contract.

22 thoughts on “USC Morning Buzz: A Succession Plan That Fell Apart

  1. This is actually great news, because it tells me that Mike Bohn does not consider Graham Harrell head coaching material. His soft PAC 12 offense wouldn’t stand a chance in the playoffs against the big physical teams. Iowa, Notre Dame, Oregon, and evening BYU dominated the Trojans up front. So after the Alabama massacre, I’m sure Bohn will probably get the ball rolling on his coaching search.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I, too, am against Graham Harrell becoming USC head football coach. The soft offense is not appealing.

      But I am also against having a head coach in waiting on staff. If the HC job becomes vacant just go out and look anywhere and everywhere for the best available candidate, not just from the guys on staff. And, you never know but a few years down the road and Richard might not be the best available. What if a “better” HC or up and coming assistant is available in another conference and wants the USC job? Do you bypass him because USC “promised” Richard the job?

      And, I think the head coach in waiting works against the coaches. If the head coach is failing and the HC in waiting is on staff, how does that affect his job performance knowing he gets the job if his boss fails? Does he “sabotage” the HC for his own benefit?



      Liked by 6 people

      1. I generally like where you were headed with this, marvienna, but I smiled at your concerns about what happens if, after promising Richard the job, “somebody better comes along?” No worries. USC knows how to handle this situation.

        Liked by 3 people

      2. Talk about being emasculated, Helton must feel like someone took away his man- card. I guess his 4 million/ year Is his consolation prize.

        Liked by 2 people

  2. Scooter,

    Sometimes I am slow, but please explain to me why Richards did not want to wait? If the plan was devised on him coming in as the d cordinator and then the head coach, he should have jumped on the chance. He would have been the first black head coach at SC. He loves SC and he has taken on Pete Carrol’s style of defense. It would have been a win, win situation.

    Liked by 4 people

      1. Pasadena Trojan,

        Mornin’ from a South Pas Trojan! Seems logical. Curious if something like that would be binding if it was done while clay was under contract. Who knows the way the law is constantly shape-shifting.


  3. If true (and that is a big “if” on the veracity of this story), this shows Kris has intelligence, and Mike Bohn doesn’t. Why be a “head coach in waiting” when, if you really do a great job, the defense is so good you potentially win a national championship? What AD replaces a head coach then? And the moral hazard is also present: the faster the team tanks, the faster Kris would become head coach (so, underperform on defense maybe?).

    Kris would obviously try to instead nudge Bohn into a ‘man up’ posture – and make the move he knows he needs to make (firing Helton) by making Kris HC right away. But obviously, that didn’t happen.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Dr. Fauci just said that sports shouldn’t be played this year.

    Clay Helton and USC lucked out again, Alabama won’t be giving them another ass kicking that Helton and USC so richly deserve

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dr. Fauci is the Judge Lance Ito of the medical profession ……

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Michael, are you writing your tell all on the OJ Simpson saga since you knew the cast of characters from your time at the City Attorney’s Office?

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Nooop.
        I was asked by whatever the ABC channel is in San Francisco to do commentary on that trial— and I remember thinking I would just love watching ME on tv every night [falling in love with myself over & over again]—-then my better self kicked in….


  5. Wow! You boys are on your game today. Interesting and insightful thoughts on DoughBoy’s post. You should start your own website/blog. The only post I have a problem with is “if you really do a great job, the defense is so good you potentially win a national championship?”… That is NOT a scenario the Trojans need to spend too much time on even if George Halas himself is our DC. Don’t buy your tickets to Hard Rock Stadium in Miami just yet. No need to black out the SC Natty parade date at this juncture.

    Interesting comment Pete Carroll made about Bowl Games. Keep in mind that SC had missed a bowl 5 out of 10 years prior to Pete. He said “the value of a bowl game, ANY bowl, is in the extra practice time.” The NCAA allows 15 extra practices of which Pete said “It’s critical to get all that extra practice time especially in coaching up the younger players. Even if you want to rest a senior or starter, next season’s competition starts at the bowl practice.” Meanwhile Coach Willy Loman (it’s important to be liked) doesn’t use all of his bowl practices. In fact one practice was a walk-through in a hotel ballroom which explains why our team could NOT find the right end zone for pregame.

    COACH, noun, often attributive
    \ ˈkōch \
    Definition of coach:
    1: one who instructs or trains
    2: especially one who instructs players in the fundamentals of a sport and directs team strategy
    3: Pete Carroll, Urban Meyer, etc.

    PATHETIC adjective
    pa·​thet·​ic | \ pə-ˈthe-tik \
    Definition of pathetic
    1: Pitifully inferior or inadequate
    2: Absurd, Laughable (if we weren’t crying)
    3: Coach Clay Helton

    Liked by 4 people

  6. Plan A: OK OC & DC, let’s kick azz this year & get to at least 10-2, do the Rose Bowl, win that one & have a great off season.
    Plan B: OKey dokey, let’s tank the season, I’ll get the ax & one of you miserable scoundrels can inherit my job. Meanwhile, I’ll get $165k every two weeks. AhAhAhAhAhA
    Sheer brilliance. Everybody becomes radioactive. I would kinda doubt that an AD would cook something like this up. Sounds like a figment of a bored imagination.

    This whole plan reminds of the plan to assassinate der Fürher.
    Eventually all the participants got sent to the Russian Front.


    Liked by 3 people

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