Trojan War: Time To Check In On USC Coaching Search

USC fired head coach Clay Helton in September following a 42-28 loss to Stanford, abruptly ending his seventh season leading the Trojans program. 

After just two games, USC and Helton parted ways. The Los Angeles Times went through a few names that could be possible candidates in the unique coaching search, with Penn State head coach James Franklin seeming like a natural fit.

The LA Times reports Dan Patrick said he has a source that says there is mutual interest between Franklin and USC — Franklin did nothing to dispel the report, going out of his way to not confirm or deny it.

“I’ve tracked this over time, that really no matter what you say, people aren’t happy with, so I’ve decided I will handle this internally, talk to our team,” Franklin said. “I’m not worried about distractions in the media, and with the fans. I’m worried about my team.”

The Nittany Lions are 5-0 on the season and No. 4 in Week 6.

Cincinnati head coach Luke Fickell’s name came up in the LA Times’ reporting but said he’s unlikely to uproot his family. The article states that Fickell will likely be considered a candidate by many until USC athletic director Mike Bohn — who hired Fickell at Cincinnati — says it’s someone else.


Iowa State coach Matt Campbell’s name can’t be left out either, the LA Times reports. The Cyclones began the season ranked No. 7 but have lost to Iowa and Baylor. Other notable names the LA Times reports:

  • Jeff Hafley, Boston College coach
  • Mark Stoops, Kentucky coach
  • Dave Aranda, Baylor coach
  • Eric Bieniemy, Kansas City Chiefs offensive coordinator
  • Anthony Lynn, Detroit Lions offensive coordinator
  • Chris Petersen, former Washington coach
  • Bob Stoops, former Oklahoma coach

Not In The Running

  • Urban Meyer, Jacksonville Jaguars coach
  • P.J. Fleck, Minnesota coach
  • Greg Schiano, Rutgers coach
  • Donte Williams, USC interim coach
  • Tony Elliott, Clemson offensive coordinator
  • Jack Del Rio, Washington Football Team defensive coordinator

Written by Megan Turner

Megan graduated from the University of Central Florida and writes and tweets about anything related to sports. She replies to comments she shouldn't reply to online and thinks the CFP Rankings are absolutely rigged. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram.

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