If It’s Friday, It’s Time For A (Mini) USC Notes Column

USC coaches and players last spoke to the media Wednesday.

The next time anyone will be available to the media is next Tuesday. This is pretty crazy when you consider USC plays Notre Dame next week.

Whatever you think of this year’s edition of the game, it’s still college football’s greatest intersectional rivalry. Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly will speak to the media on Monday even though the Irish also had a bye this week. Why can’t USC?

For all the talk about how great USC is in media relations, six days without doing interviews for the biggest game of the year is no way to promote the program, even at 3-3. Imagine if the Trojans had actually played to the expectations of most people? The game would be extremely attractive and USC would still have a six-day media blackout.

USA Today listed all the Pac-12 coaches’ salaries Thursday. What stands out to me is Mario Cristobal makes $4.4 million. He might not want the USC job but what if the Trojans offered $8 million a year?

  • There’s a feeling among some in coaching circles that the Seahawks would like Pete Carroll to move on after this season. What would Carroll do if he left? Call USC?
  • You know who no one is criticizing? USC safeties coach Craig Naivar. He’s coaching Isaiah Pola-Mao, who has been one of the biggest disappointments this season.
  • The year isn’t a total waste for Clay Helton. His son, Turner, has passed for 647 yards with five touchdowns in six games for Palos Verdes.
  • Mike Bohn hired USC swim coach Jeremy Kipp, who is currently on administrative leave amid allegations he was abusive to swimmers. He also hired USC women’s volleyball coach Brad Keller, who has a 7-8 record this season.
  • Andy Enfield made the following comment at Pac-12 media day: “I think the excitement around our program is at an all-time high since I’ve been here.”

Really? What are the ticket sales? Who replaces Evan Mobley?

55 thoughts on “If It’s Friday, It’s Time For A (Mini) USC Notes Column

  1. I don’t know if this game will be close or a blowout. But I do know one thing….ND will win. I’m not a big fan of Mario Cristobal. We’re not going to get him anyway. The LSU and the Miami job are about to open up. Being a Florida boy, he’ll take those jobs before he will take the SC job. I wouldn’t mind seeing Pete Carroll coming to SC as the AD but not as the football coach. He’s too old. You said 647 yards in 6 games. That’s 108 yards a game. Not exactly Hall of Fame stuff. I think Dart threw for that in one game when he was in high school.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Fridays are back in Woofylvania! For the other baseball fans out there that have engaged (in varying degrees of niceties) – can’t ask for more than last night and for a series of that quality, on the heels of the eliminator against an also deserving team. And for MadMax to be in on the capper…and the much chided Bellinger to deliver the difference…given remaining field, rest of post-season may be a step down but all the more reason for the best team to clean up…and even if not on par, coincides with transition to hockey season…as for football…well, at least the pro teams on the best coast are for the most part having a good go of it.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Carol Folt would never allow the football coach to be paid $8 million a year. USC football fans need to lower their expectations. Start thinking re-tread coach who can be gotten on the cheap.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I opined about a week ago that I think people who are old enough should think somewhere between past decade and at best Larry Smith…8-4 mid-level bowl trumpeted as tremendous success and the continued pr/psych tactic of using lapdog press to browbeat and (attempt to) shame anachronistic “unrealistic” fans who just need to fork over their money and stick their “V” in the air and be shiny and happy…and the standard now being, to ClayDough’s delete, the Pac-whatever South…

      USC’s most recent meetings with Alabama, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Texas – all crushing losses. As a kid, I memorized the most recent wins over those programs, and how they related to national championships, Rose Bowl victories, Heisman Trophy awards, All-Americans…and was aggravated over lost opportunities (e.g. Missouri loss in ’76, Stanford tie in ’79, giveaways in ’80 and ’81 even though team wasn’t quite as dominant … then ’88 and ’89 … into 2005-08).

      That’s all that needs to be said about this state of the program, and those of us intelligent enough not to be coerced as per above will never care about going to the conference championship game every few years, because it was never, and should never, be the standard.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Or Billy Mummy (with the Robot but sans Dr. Smith…probably more fitting if we got TZ version though)…or Billy Corgan…or Billy Idol (yes musicians would do better than Helton)…or Billy Goat (yes, the Navy mascot would do better than Helton)…but perhaps not Billy in the news this morning, or Billy Carter (unless Dan Akroyd is willing to resurrect his version of)…for that matter, Bill(y) the Cat from Bloom County would be better than Helton…would love to see him in an office with the Fearless Wicked Witch…

        Liked by 1 person

      2. 3-9 Billy Barty and Coach Folt … now there’s a pair. Think of fundraising … the curiosity factor would be through the roof.

        Liked by 2 people

      3. John Hammond in Jurassic Park (the book, not the movie) would love that! Could keep in a little cage with his prized miniature elephant…

        Liked by 2 people

      4. James –Speaking of Jurassic Park, didn’t you just love it when politically correct Dr. Alan Grant tells the kids (who have just experienced a T- Rex killing & eating their driver and trying to kill them), “they just do what they do.”

        Liked by 1 person

      5. Oh yeah…it’s largely lost in the movie, but in the book, Malcolm is clearly the heroic voice of reason (and much of what he said is just as relevant today)…

        Believe the point of the movie you’re referring to is around the time where Grant is auditioning for a 2021 position as a public school teacher by explaining to other people’s children all about amphibian reproductive exploits

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    2. Let me coach the team. I’ll do it for $100,000. You might not like the results but I do come cheap compared to the Urban Meyers of the world.

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      1. Mike Bohn: “I know there’s a hole in your logic….but I’ll be darned if I can find it…
        #….Okay!
        #You’reHired!”

        Liked by 1 person

  4. At this point who really cares what USC does, because the season is a wash . The interest is at a all time low, and Notre Dame will probably kick their ass up and down the field. I’m looking forward to the coaching search, and how recruiting is going.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’m looking forward solely to the coaching search – as exciting as recruiting used to be, not only have so many things changed, but so much of the recruiting success of USC in the post-Kiffin times has been nothing but hype and not to be trusted, particularly with Hugs recruiting for 7 on 7 touch purposes…if (which I sincerely doubt will happen) they hire a good coach, then recruiting will become interesting again.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. James — Tell me the truth: Can you envision Mike Bohn interviewing a hard driving Alpha Male Coach, listening to the guy say “I don’t know what you’ve been doing here for the last 2 years, Bohn….it’s time to kick ass and take no prisoners”….and, then, hiring the guy?

        Liked by 1 person

      2. See most recent reply to you! Nope – neither I, nor you, nor Charles, ’67…Mule, Cal (sorry you two, but you are now rolodexes together! If we could only get you two on a video podcast together – platinum!)… nor any of the other intelligent posters (all of whom deserve be named by name, but I’m lucky to remember where I put my car keys, so…apologies in advance)…

        Has every indication of: Debacle…

        Liked by 1 person

      3. The choice itself will be a debacle — but the Grand Announcement, the Introduction Presser and the Promotional Video will be SO inspiring….

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Carol asked her secretary to line up George to sing “My Guitar Gently Weeps” at the big “Here’s Our New Coach Announcement Party”…
        #…ThenSheGotTheSadNews…

        Liked by 1 person

      5. So at least in that scenario she would be acting honestly! From her and the Toad we’ve received way too much false “Here Comes The Sun”…can only hope they in turn get their “Within You and Without You” moment…we know all too well that the powers that be at SC have been demonstrating “I…Me-Me…Mine” far too much of the time…while we lesser lights have just been distracted by them from thinking about the “Tax Man”…

        Liked by 1 person

    2. Bill — USC may lose but I bet they don’t give up. I have a hunch they’re gonna fight till the last drop of blood in this game.
      [In reply to Scott’s pointing out how the safeties —and their position coach —have escaped criticism this year: who has time to notice the safeties when you’re watching our corners]?
      #btw,ThankYouForOurFavorite”Theme”Column,Scott

      Liked by 2 people

      1. MG-mow-wow so early? Nail is standing up only in anticipation of Hammer. 1977 and the Holtz era will seem competitive by comparison. And given 2015…think that would be for the best…just in case…at least it will eliminate one potential candidate from the pool of terrible decisions that the Wicked Witch and her Toad are likely brewing up…

        Liked by 1 person

      1. Unless you could, say…hire a coach who could walk in and turn 6-7 into 12-0 in the span of an off-season…but that never happens…

        Before stones and eggs and whatever else is hurled, you get my point…

        On the other hand, your point is certainly correct – this was a long-time coming, and it won’t be fully fixed without a lot of work (and then only if…)…

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Henry Kissinger: “This was an integrated attack….and it will require an integrated response.”
        #RememberWhenAraTookOverTheIrish?…
        #HeGotThemThru9Games…
        #AndHalfWayThruTheir10th…
        #…ThenMcKay&FertigBrokeTheirLittleHearts

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Great example – great memory! Not exactly the same, but eerily similar to 88 (one year delayed) under Smith…10-0…then one ill-advised throw…

        Liked by 1 person

      4. I remember how sick Rodney was the week prior to the UCLA game —somehow he kicked their ass as the Rose Bowl —but I was worried that he might be spent for the season due to that effort….
        #AndHeWas

        Liked by 1 person

      5. Yes, SI focused on that in their coverage of the game as I recall…but it was as one-sided as the week later let down…I mentioned in post a couple of weeks back that that one ill-advised pass was the pivot where things started to go wrong under Smith…that ND team was not better (good, but not better, as next season’s contest reinforced)…and it was such an unnecessary throw…but he was used to getting away with it (and hadn’t learned apparently that against anyone else, maybe, but against a master – and Holtz was at the peak of his game then – nope, just like pros, film study, tendency/probability study…was parked and waiting for that play as much as Jack Squirek in the 1984 Super Bowl before halftime).

        Liked by 1 person

      6. It’s been years since I watched that interception …but I seem to remember Holtz had taught his players to think about flattening the QB after the ball was intercepted to prevent him becoming a de facto safety…
        #IBelieveRodneyWasOnTheWrongSideOfThatLesson….
        Note: I think Carol is exhibiting some ambivalence about her presidency in the wake of the recent indictments –she’s penned a piece for the New York Times entitled, “Should There Be A Place Called U.S.C.?”

        Liked by 1 person

      7. Oh, yeah, the return…it (the play, and the energy, aggressiveness, and smarts you could see that was just oozing out of that team) epitomized Holtz at his best (along with that 1978 Orange Bowl flat out shocker when he slopping the Hogs)…looked like an absolute jail break…cue Bon Scott and the Young Bros.!…

        Great point about Carol…you think she despises U.S.C. as in football more, or fears __ U.S.C. ___ more?

        Liked by 1 person

      8. When the NFL invents a reason for going through Carol’s texts they’ll find several to Clay Helton addressing the need to re-mission the school as “All Girls Academy…”
        #HeltonReply:”MayNotPullThatOff..ButI’mDoingTheNextBestThing…”

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  5. Mike Bohn announcement:
    “USC will ignore the press in the buildup to the Notre Dame game. Anything we say might indicate confidence….which would or could make the Irish mad. Best for us to stay off the radar. This doesn’t mean we’re not confident. But, then again it doesn’t mean we are.”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Our fear is” Folt & Bohn are —intentionally or unintentionally —working on making the “entire situation” suck even worse….
      #…LikeTenMoreYearsWorse

      Liked by 1 person

      1. That’s why I referenced the 2015 game above…that was the beginning of the process that culminated in the Swann Song served up after the 2017 Rose Bowl…they showed fight! they were competitive! they showed belief in the coach!

        No, no, and no…

        Better if another thrashing more like 2017 occurs…

        Better, but not best (which would be…etc, etc, etc).

        So of course, the Sham-Rocks being what they are…Kelly will find some way to make the score deceptively close while administering a physical beating (even though the Irish are and always have been lame under him, by their standards)…and then give a glowing recommendation in best Herbstreit-like Wormtongue fashion.

        Liked by 1 person

    1. Absolutely right Fire Folt. Nothing that Bohn has done inspires confidence. And avoiding the press is just one tactic that is being used to hide the fact that there is serious incompetence going on at Heritage Hall and at Bovard. Why have a press conference if questions are going to come up about a coaching search and you do not have good answers? Why have a press conference if you may be asked about not bringing in Urban Meyer for bad (but not illegal) bar behavior but keeping Nikias and the recently indicted Dean of Social Work on the payroll? After 2018, I quit going to β€˜SC games until Gomer was gone. I went to the Oregon St. game and I saw enough. I won’t go back to the Coliseum until a competent coach is in place and we should all do the same.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. What turned you off at the Oregon State game? Slovis standing immobile in the pocket? Our corners getting lost in space? The defense giving up the middle of the field? The sidelines being open? The players giving up? Lack of halftime adjustments?
        #MikeBohn: “AreYouGonnaLetEveryLittleThingBotherYou?”

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  6. USC will screw the pooch on the coaching search. You know it, I know it, they know it. πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

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  7. USC plays B.Y.E this week (or in light of current news BUY) I know this because the schedule I downloaded into my calendar posted it this way. Either way the run of luck we’ve been having might mean one or more players get hurt by the imaginary opponent. Being the Sunshine pumper I am I will almost guarantee a win for the Trojans this weekend.
    As for Helton Jr., if he is destined to take over the family business in football futility he will most assuredly be the second string quarterback on whatever Midwest J.C. his dad coaches. And being a math major, he may discover a prime number between 2 and 3 and take up teaching at the end of his college career. I wish him luck

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Strictly speaking —although you CAN’T guarantee a win — you CAN guarantee we won’t lose.
      [And, with Helton gone, we’re pretty much assured two of our own receivers won’t run into each other at practice ….and be out for the rest of the season]…..
      #Those”Pre-Game”InjuriesReallyShouldaSaidItAllToBohn&Folt

      Liked by 1 person

  8. There are rumors flying around including from the Wolfman that Seattle wants Pete Carroll to resign at the conclusion of this season. He still has his home in Manhattan Beach so USC needs to offer him a position.

    1) Fire Mike Bohn or offer him a Fund raising job as an Assistant to President Carol Folt so the love affair they have can continue. Bohn, has used car salesman skills so now that he has ruined the athletic dept. he will now be forced to recover some of the lost money from an empty Coliseum.2) Hire Pete Carroll as the Athletic Director with an option to be football coach for the next 3 years to rebuild the program, and hire the right coach to succeed him. John McKay at one time was both the athletic director and head football coach simultaneously. Bill Snyder came back to save Kansas State, and then retired once the program was going in the right direction again.

    Sorry Folks Mike Bohn is not the right guy for USC, and if allowed to hire the new football coach it will be a disaster that probably will be difficult to recover from. For those of you thinking he has done a great job here in the two years he has been here please think again. The hiring of Lindsay Gottlieb the Women’s Basketball Coach might work out, but Bohn overpaid to get her, and women’s basketball is a low revenue sport. My thinking is Gottlieb will leave after two seasons anyway, and head to the WNBA which to be truthful is her dream job. Take a look at Gottlieb’s resume she wants to climb to the top quickly, and that is not going to happen coaching women’s college basketball at USC.

    Come on home Pete …it’s time to take on a new challenge!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Love that idea and can only hope/wish it proved true…would love to see him come back as Sr. Exec. VP plentipotentiary with unlimited power and budget…couple of years to go from Sonny Byrd to Justin Vargas to Reggie Bush so to speak (some insinuation!)…and then to hire his successor…Bill Snyder is as fine an individual as you could point too…also think of Barry Alvarez leaving Holtz at the height of ND to resurrect Bucky Badger…

      Liked by 1 person

  9. So Mr. Wolf posits:

    Andy Enfield made the following comment at Pac-12 media day: β€œI think the excitement around our program is at an all-time high since I’ve been here.”

    “Really? What are the ticket sales? Who replaces Evan Mobley?” ~ S. Wolf

    I guess the Booger and his daddy aren’t cuttin’ it for Mr. Wolf.

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  10. Scott Wolf———USC Basketball is at its highest level since probably the late 50 or very early 60’s. Men’s basketball should be viewed in a positive way thanks to Andy Enfield. Now, if your talking about USC Football, Baseball, USC Men’s and Women’s Volleyball, and Women’s Basketball those should be looked at in a negative manner since those programs are currently sinking. Hiring Coach Gottlieb at a very high salary is a good move, but I question whether she stays longer than two years before heading to the WNBA. Men’s basketball is about the only positive thing going on within the athletic dept. other than Women’s Beach Volleyball so why be negative even before the season begins.

    Ticket Sales will never be big for USC Basketball unless it is for a big game which happens once or twice a year. UCLA basketball attendance has dropped considerably over the last 10 years also. REASON- If your paying top buck to go to a basketball game go see the best players in the world at Staples Center whether that be the Lakers or Clippers.

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