*The University of Southern California Football Trojans have a huge history that started in the 1930’s with the Howard Jones “Thundering Herd” who battled the great Notre Dame Coach Knute Rockne and “The Gipper” and won. Jess Hill came along in the 1950’s and later became the Athletic Director. Then came the iconic John McKay…….who set the mark for greatness that was never eclipsed by John Robinson or anyone else until Pete Carroll came along.
The day the NCAA and BCS Committee met in a small General Store in Lawrence, Kansas and determined in their wisdom that Pete Carroll, after eight years of winning, could be on track to win for another ten years went after USC, Reggie Bush and a ball boy….for egregious NCAA Rule Violations. This is the same group that have given numerous other schools including the Texas A & M this year a pass for Johnny “Football” Manzeil…..for signing four figure autographs and other rule violations and gave him one half of one game suspension.
Fast Forward to the replacement of longtime Athletic Director and Heisman Trophy recipient Mike Garrett with the so-called adopted son of Coach McKay. Haden said he came to clean up the program. Haden is the one that is dirty. Haden is the one that made the back door deals with the NCAA and the BCS Committee to keep the USC Trojans under-achievers for the next 10 years. Pat Haden brought in Lane Kiffin, “Mr. Disconnect”! Kiffin had already a terrible track record of rule breaking, stupid moves and ridiculous behavior at the LA Raiders and the Tennessee Volunteers. When the seats at the LA Coliseum started collecting dust……..Haden made his move two years too late and finally had to fire Kiffin in the middle of the night. Thinking that he could find an appropriate dupe to fill Kiffin’s shoes…..he mistakenly allowed Coach Ed Oregron to take over as “Interim Coach”…while they were supposed to do a National search for a USC, NFL, Winning Coach to come on board in 2014. Do we have knowledge or evidence to support our conclusions? Certainly not. But we do have eyes and a mind to think with!
Little could Pat Haden grasp how the tremendous leadership qualities of Coach O could suddenly energize this totally unemotional team. Suddenly, the same listless team or underachievers became world beaters and full of unexpected character and success on the field. Pat Haden was embarrassed. Somehow, the true character of the USC Trojan football team became exposed to the general public and the fans began to return to the seats in the stands. The players all loved Coach O, but the rumor was that on Novemeber 1st, Haden had met with Denver Bronco Defensive Coach and former USC player Jack Del Rio. Two weeks later USC had beaten the number 4 rated team in the BCS Standings – Stanford University. Pat Haden had egg on his face. His back door deals were started to look transparent and now what would the “Famous in his own mind” Haden do? First off, just disregard anyone’s input that did not agree with his. Secondly, break the hearts of USC Football players, the USC Alumni, the USC Fan Base and the entire Los Angeles – Orange County – San Diego – Santa Barbara – Riverside – San Bernardino communities. Hire Steve Sarkisian right out from under the University of Washington Huskies?
Who is Steve Sarkisian? Steve is another Lane Kiffin, whose only claim to fame was that he worked for Pete Carroll during the glory comeback years. Steve has never been to the big show, never won a PAC-10 or PAC-12 Title, never gone to the Rose Bowl and is basically as disconnected and distant from reality as Lane Kiffin was. This is a very bad choice, not because Steve is a bad guy…..just that he is not the right guy. Wouldn’t it have made sense to choose someone that “could be considered” superior to Coach O, in any regard? Sarkisian will have to work very hard to alter his current image of cold, uncaring and disconnected.
As Coach O resigned and said good-by to his team, the tears streamed down his eyes and the eyes of the players. The fans, the sports writers, the families and the friends of Trojan Football – all cried. Coach O could have lost every game next year and would still be loved. Sarkisian can beat both Notre Dame and UCLA next year and still wind up 7 and 5 and out of the Championship hunt. This is despicable. Pat Haden is a major turn-coat to the University of Southern California. Maybe all those years being the commentator for the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame – finally got to him? Maybe, those corrupt NCAA and BCS Officials made him an offer – he couldn’t refuse. There is little doubt however, that he has broken the hearts of Trojan fans everywhere in the world.
Pat Haden has single-handedly put a lump of coal in the USC Trojan Football stocking. Pat Haden ……the early Christmas Grinch!