USC had a terrible 2018. The Trojans went down 5-7, the worst thing they've done since setting an identical record in 2000. When the 2000 team under Paul Hackett continued a three-year demolition, this led to the coaches fired USC hired Pete Carroll as a replacement for him, and two or more years later, the Trojans were firmly known as one of the best programs in the sport.
The days of national disputes of the Trojans are not over. This is not how it works if a program has the tradition of USC and is located in Los Angeles. But anything that has happened since the end of this terrible 2018 season has only caused the USC to move further away from the Pac-1
. 1 Clay Helton was not fired.
It was not until the week before Thanksgiving that the coaches thought about the sport, that Helton would be fired if the Trojans had lost their final at home to Notre Dame. They did, but AD Lynn Swann announced shortly after that Helton would keep his job.
There is a possibility that Helton may authorize the ship at any given time. In 2016, he won nine consecutive games after installing Sam Darnold as his first QB, and USC won the Rose Bowl. In 2017, he won eleven games and reached a New Year's bowl (which he had lost in the state of Ohio). None of that was so long ago, and in those years Helton seemed to be right for the show.
Swann could refer to these pretty good last seasons as a reason for Helton. But he has not managed to make the USC a dominant force in the Pac-12 South which he won once in three years as a full-time coach. It was surprising that he was not fired at 5-7.
. 2 Helton turned his staff over to assistant trainers, but left the centerpiece of the switch after a month.
Kliff Kingsbury was an amazing offensive coordinator. The fired Texas Tech coach is an offensive guy, and USC got him fixed in early December to repair a unit that battled QB with five-star freshman JT Daniels. This seemed to be a heavenly agreement.
But Kingsbury got a better deal. The NFL, who craved the crime of college desire, came to a call, and he did what almost anyone would do, taking charge of the cardinals as head coaches.
. 3 Swann felt ashamed of the USC when Kingsbury went out trying to give him the chance to conduct an interview with NFL teams.
USC had this contractual right. However, it is typical for coaching teams to have assistants interviewed for jobs that would represent promotions in the industry. Instead, Kingsbury had to resign from the USC to speak with the Cardinals, according to the team president. Arizona eventually covered Kingsbury's $ 150,000 buyout.
This is not the USC's biggest problem right now, but Swann might have made the USC a less attractive job for future candidates. If a coach has the ambition to get a bigger job somewhere, does he want to work for an AD that has shown that he is not always okay with coaches who track such things? It could play a role in the face of Helton's bouts.
. 4 In the midst of Kingsbury's brief term as OK, the Trojans signed an unusually low-scoring recruitment class, which now attracts water after it leaves.
The average USC class of the past four years was ranked fifth in the 247Sports Composite. Only Alabama and the state of Ohio were better on average.
This USC class is ranked 14th. It includes two blue chips that have not actually signed Letters of Intent. One of them is the four-star receiver Kyle Ford, who signed up for the early signing period and thought he would play for Kingsbury. He is free to go anywhere if he wants, and since he is the # 6 recipient in the class, he has many choices.
The class's No. 1 athlete, the five-star SoCal native Bru McCoy, signed his scholarship papers. But he's already on the transfer portal, Texas seems to be a strong candidate.
USC blog Conquest Chronicles says:
The McCoy News adds to the drama that hit USC throughout the month. With the recruiting and Kingsbury leaving, just to name a few, the university does not look so good at all levels. They begin to wonder and question what Lynn Swann and Clay Helton are doing at USC. Yet another eye for the USC football program and just weeks before National Signing Day.
McCoy and Ford are the best rated players in the USC class (or so to speak).
If the USC class finished in 14th place, this would be the lowest ranking for a trojan class contracted in the history of rankings recruiting. In fact, it could be a lot worse than that, even if you consider McCoy a transfer rather than a standard suspension.
(The Trojans also officially lost the # 7 safety in the 2017 class, Bubba Bolden, who has been suspended since the start of the 2018 season and transferred to Miami.)
The potential of USC remains enormous , But it has been a long time since the Trojans were so bad, either in the field or in recruitment.
The non-conference schedule for 2019 includes the state of Fresno, a street game with BYU, and a street game with Notre Dame. The Pac-12 Slate has a visit to Washington and a home game against Oregon in the cross-discipline game. Things could get worse before they get better.