Neuheisel denies Norton’s claims

Rick Neuheisel issued a statement today in response to a story in the L.A. Times. In the story, USC assistant coach Ken Norton alleged that UCLA is telling recruits that it will hire Norton if DeWayne Walker leaves. Here’s the statement from Neuheisel:

“In response to comments made by USC assistant football coach Ken Norton, let me say that I have an outstanding defensive coordinator in DeWayne Walker. He has done a great job for us and I hope he stays at UCLA for many years. However, if he has the opportunity to become a head coach, I know he would do a fine job and I would support him in any way possible.

“That being said, I was sorry to read the comments Kenny made in the Los Angeles Times. I have not told any recruits that if DeWayne left, Kenny would be the defensive coordinator at UCLA and neither have my assistant coaches. Despite the fact that Kenny is a great Bruin, we have more than enough positives at UCLA to interest recruits and convince them that this is the school at which they can flourish both academically and athletically.

“There has been a lot of speculation about Kennys return to UCLA in the media and on the internet, and perhaps that has confused people about who has said what. If DeWayne leaves, I would consider several candidates for the defensive coordinator job.
Kenny probably would have been among those considered, with no guarantees.
However, his quotes in the paper say he is staying at USC, so we wish him well.”

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