Free Scott Wolf: Day 1 … and we’re done



Scott Wolf tweeted out recently from @InsideUSC == I am happy to say my football practice ban was lifted after talks with Pat Haden and area sports editors. Practice policy talks continue … I want to thank everyone (journalists, fans friends) for their messages of support today

The Original Blog post:

What could backfire on Lane Kiffin must be good enough for his former Trojans coaching mate Steve Sarkisian.

As Kiffin, head coach of USC’s football program, continues to refuse to give injury updates on his team — and has made good on a threat to ban reporters from reporting them by misguidedly punishing Daily News reporter Scott Wolf this week — Sarkisian, the head coach at the University of Washington, laid down a similar edict today.

Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times reported today (linked here that the media, as well as “all visitors,” are, in the words of the university, “hereforth prohibited from reporting on strategy or injury-related news observed during practices. No players or coaches will have any comments on injuries and any such information.”

Sarkisian added that he wasn’t going to “comment on injuries anymore. I’m not. No one in our organization is. It’s just a competitive disadvantage for us when other teams don’t and we do, so that’s going to be the road we take.”

They did not issue any ultimatums to media members that did report on injuries, but you can assume it’s likely to be what USC and Kiffin are doing in making an example out of Wolf, who did not report on an injury witnessed at practice.

A Washington spokesman said this policy is the same at USC, Stanford, Oregon and Washington State. It is known that UCLA coach Jim Mora also does not disclose injuries on his team.


The backlash to the Wolf banning comes via Twitter, many of them from reporters who also cover USC:

Michael Lev at the Orange County Register: Last yr Kiffin gave basic INJ report: Out, limited or full practice. We asked for same + suggested no elaboration/follow-up. We were denied.

Bruce Feldman at Not sure banning media from practice is hot idea. Can end w/ them digging for stories more troubling than inj reports

Gary Klein at the L.A. Times: Kiffin/Sarkisian were assistants for USC teams that had pretty successful run under Carroll, who had no draconian policy re injury reports.

Stewart Mandel from Coaches don’t have to tell reporters anything. That’s their right. But to punish someone for reporting something that’s true? Not cool.

Also from Mandel: Dear Kiffin + Sarkisian: Nick Saban gives reporters detailed injury report. Ala doesnt seem to suffer competitive disadvantage

Dennis Dodd at CBS Sports: If other LA media report USC kicker’s injury, do they get banned too? No one in press box. USC cannot afford the bad publicity.

Richard Deitsch at Banning reporters only ends up producing bad PR. An adult at USC needs to end this nonsense.

Art Spander: I guess Lane Kiffin learned something from Al Davis: How to threaten the writers

Marc Isenberg: @DufresneLATimes With you 100%. Used to be NCAA wanted to injuries disclosed to “protect the integrity of the game.”

More from Isenberg: Fav line re media from Fred Claire (fmr adjunct @ Annenberg, where I heard this line!!): “Don’t argue w ppl who buy ink by the barrel.”

Chris Dufresne at the L.A. Times: USC also has the right to close practice and put barbed wire around field. Bill Snyder did this at K-State years ago! Come on, SC.

Also from Dufrense: I will boycott USC football on Sept. 22 by HAVING DirectTV…..!

Chris Mannix at All LA media should boycott Trojans’ next home game.

Kevin Modesti at the Daily News: Disagree. Others should keep trying to inform public, as Scott does.

Ryan Abraham at insidetroy: I can tell you this, way more people know about Andre Heidari’s surgery now than right after Wolf reported it.

Scott Enyeart: I’ll say this about the new media policies at USC and UW: Pete had practices open for 9 years, was never a “competitive disadvantage”

Jay Posner at the San Diego Union Tribune: We learned this from years of problems with Chargers & closed practices: We think fans care about this, but sadly, they don’t.

Adds Modesti: True, it won’t turn USC fans against Trojans. But for others, might it contribute to an unflattering image of USC?

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  • Paul

    Now, if all these reporters and the Daily News brass would only check out Wolf’s file and disgusting blog comment section …

  • Bob

    The Daily News should be ashamed of the “reporting” that Wolf does and the comment section that he allows to be filled with bigots, racists, and trolls. Whether or not he violated policy, I wouldn’t mind a more permanent ban. It would certainly increase the overall journalistic integrity on the USC beat scene.

  • arealrascal

    I realize these writers feel obliged to stick up for one of their own, but if any of them read Wolf’s crap they’d have been as happy as we to see him go. Why aren’t any of these scribes mentioning the outpouring of disdain for Scott when the ban was announced?

  • JD

    Typical self-righteous media showing solidarity when everyone else knows they’re trifling.. especially Wolf’s dumbass

  • BillN

    So the media ganged up on Pat Haden and he conceded. That is unfortunate. If the media won’t abide by Lane Kiffin’s request not to publish any injury information then take away their privilege to attend practices. It is more important to win games then have the media help USC’s competition.

  • Son of CharIie Bucket

    tremendous victory for freedom of speeech and of the press!!! fittingly, Bounce Pass Haden was humilated into folding like a coward after trying to bully the wolfman!

    of course, this was all an ill-concieved attempt to pay the wolfman back for exposing Kiff’s AP ballot lies.

    oh sugar sweeeet justice!!

    finally, a big shout out to The Classy Cadre who spent the day lobbying local press!! d

    ok one more wolf-howl:


  • SunnyByrd

    You “journalists” and “media” people all have to stick together, even though some of you (if not all) are nothing more than hyperbolic reactionist blowhards. This guy Wolf is a hack and a joke, and it wouldn’t surprise me one bit if he were a yet-to-be-convicted sex offender. Seriously, you “journalists” are going to support THIS guy??!! Have you READ his blog??! He allows all kinds of foul vile commenters and is so COMPLETELY subjective (read anti-USC) I can hardly believe he still has a job. It’s sad that he gets high traffic as a result of being hated, not because he has journalistic merit. Good riddance, Scott Wolf. You lack basic class and integrity (regardless of any divulgent transgressions).


    Wow, Wolf has no one on this blog that likes him, let alone loves him

    Now, every time any SC coach or player has to deal with Wolf, he will immediately become defensive and give Wolf as little info as possible.

    “INSIDE USC” should be re-titled “SOMEWHAT INSIDE USC”

  • marvgoux

    It isn’t a journalist’s job to be liked any more than it’s a lawyers job to be liked.

  • SC’85

    As a former reporter (and USC journalism school classmate of Scott Wolf), I think Scott was just doing his job here and disagree with the ban. However, his blog is another issue. It’s gone way past professionalism and good taste. It’s not a place I spend time anymore.