USC’s hiring of Lincoln Riley is still being viewed as the coup of the coaching searches even as LSU, Notre Dame, Miami and Oregon fill vacancies.
|But the hiring of Riley is being portrayed officially much differently than what I hear from various sources.|
|Although athletic director Mike Bohn said “the fact we landed our top candidate and one of the best coaches in all of football was not an accident,” others offer a view that makes it seem as if Riley almost fell into USC’s lap.|
|A search firm executive said that less than month ago, Bohn lamented how difficult it would be to find a strong candidate and how stressful it would be trying to avoid making a bad hire.|
|“He felt the pressure and I don’t think Riley was in the bag until that final game,” the search firm executive said.|
|It does seem as if Oklahoma had beaten Oklahoma State, a different outcome could easily have occurred.|
|But USC got Riley through the course of events, which now allows Bohn to say his hiring was “the product of a thoughtful, thorough, strategic and comprehensive search process that involved an incredible team.”|
|And don’t forget the 50-slide presentation!|
|Oklahoma offensive line coach Bill Bedenbaugh was expected to move to USC but as of now he remains with the Sooners. This is in some ways the most important hire for the coaching staff.|
UPDATED: Oklahoma announced Friday that Bedenbaugh was staying at Oklahoma.
- I can confirm USC never contacted Deion Sanders despite many pundits, including Joel Klatt of Fox Sports, pushing Sanders as a candidate for the job.
- If you don’t believe perception is everything, these comments are nearly identical but who said it and when makes a big difference:
Lincoln Riley in 2021: “You’re not going to win just because of the logo.”
Larry Smith in 1992: “Names and logos don’t mean anything. You don’t beat someone just because of your name and logo.”
That comment was seen by many USC fans as the last straw before Smith got fired.
- Linebacker Raymond Scott entered the transfer portal Thursday.
- Offensive tackle Andrew Vorhees is returning for another year.
- What I can’t believe is Graham Harrell went to the trouble of recruiting wide receiver K.D. Dixon from Colorado and then barely played him. Dixon caught three passes the entire season and is going to make himself available for the NFL Draft.
- Bryce Young is going to win the Heisman Trophy this weekend. This reminds me that a Mater Dei coach came to a USC game in 2018 and said at a tailgate the Monarchs had replaced JT Daniels with a better quarterback.
That was a big statement back then. Daniels was a heralded five-star and starting at USC as a true freshman. Young had transferred to Mater Dei from Cathedral and was not nearly as hyped. But the coach was right.
- Where are the fans who claimed Young decomitted from USC because he was scared off by Kedon Slovis?
- New Florida State athletic director Michael Alford worked in the USC athletic dept. under Mike Garrett.
- Does USC have another game this weekend that I forgot about?
FREEZING COLD TAKES
USC is building itself into a national title contender again with an overhauled recruiting operation and hunting the transfer portal for players like an NFL team uses free agency. https://t.co/Ch9dxWyZrF— RJ Young (@RJ_Young) May 24, 2021
WEEKLY LINCOLN RILEY SUCK-UP WATCH
Wow, time for Lincoln Riley to bring all those Southern California Ducks back where they belong. https://t.co/xnglyUbazg— Brady McCollough (@BradyMcCollough) December 6, 2021
- Joe Washington’s three-yard punt return is reason enough to bring back the USC-Oklahoma series.
And now for some history:
- Isn’t it about time USC bring back the Sparty mascot logo?
Yes, it is the mascot for Michigan State but USC also used it for years.
When I was at the Daily Trojan, the general manager of the USC bookstore insisted we remove Sparty as a mascot because it was not historically accurate. He said a Trojan wore a helmet with feathers all the way down the back of the helmet.
Much to the chagrin of the administrator, we amended Sparty and added the feathers to make him historically accurate and he couldn’t protest.
- Who remembers the Commons Deli in the late 1980’s?
- In 1975, John McKay would still smoke a cigar at his Tuesday morning press conferences.
Imagine the reaction when McKay said at his press conference before the Notre Dame game that Ricky Bell might play fullback because Mosi Tatupu was hobbled by a shoulder injury.
“How would that look?” McKay said. “With the whole nation looking on, we’ll have the best running back in the nation playing fullback.”
McKay floated the idea of playing Rod Connors at tailback. Of course, Tatupu recovered and Bell rushed for 165 yards as the No. 3-ranked Trojans overcame three deficits to win, 24-17. The injured Tatupu rushed for 79 yards. Linebackers David Lewis and Kevin Bruce each had 13 tackles and Lewis recovered two fumbles.
A STAT TO REMEMBER
After USC defeated Notre Dame, McKay announced he was resigning after the season, which caused the Trojans to lose four straight games.
But from 1971 to the first seven games of the 1975 season, USC was 42-3-3.
It lost more games in the next four weeks than in the previous four years.
- Lincoln Riley was 55-10? Well, John McKay was 42-3-3.