USC Saturday Buzz

The USC coaching staff is nearly completed. Running backs coach Tommie Robinson is expected to favor USC although he is weighing another job offer. This means the new hires have about two weeks to get ready for spring practice.

And it sure looks like Clay Helton will become offensive coordinator. That sort of ruins the theory some had that firing Kennedy Pola was necessary to bring in a top-notch coordinator.

Meanwhile, center Khaled Holmes is not expected to perform in any more workouts at the NFL combine after straining a chest muscle on the benchpress.

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  • Trojan Fan

    Geesh. So neither Holmes or his butt buddy Barkley are even able to participate in workouts? Shows how weak they are. So called “Captains”. No wonder the Freshman were all up in their grills challenging them. What other teams have Freshman challenging senior Heisman candidates? This team was WEAK mentally and the Seniors were the main reason.

    • TrojanFan

      Exactly! 2012 is over, let’s turn the page and focus on the next season. Hopefully Kiffin has learned from past mistakes and gets this team back to the level of play we saw in 2011. The defense needs to really step up and be the strength and backbone of this team, especial if QB play is subpar

    • WingsHD

      Goes to show, they played well when the pressure was off because of the bowl ban. When the pressure was on choke city. This goes for Kiffin even more.

    • Cheap seats

      Have you ever strained or torn a pectoral? I have. I had a grade 2 tear and I’m going on 1 year now. I’m less than 60% with my crappy medical coverage.

      In Barkley’s case, I have a suspicion that his “grade 1” shoulder strain either was incorrect or he had a setback in his rehab. I was there for the hit that A. Barr layed on him and I thought it was separated.

      If the injury wasn’t that bad, he could’ve aggravated easily it by throwing too early in hopes of making the combine. If you heard the Dan Patrick show a few months ago, he stated all along that he was going to throw at the combine.

      I’m an Orange County guy who followed MB since his senior year at Mater Dei. He always wowed people at combine-type stuff.

      • Ben Factor

        Agree. I think there was an article by a physician stating that Barkley had a type III separation, and could harm himself by premature throwing. Whatever he and Holmes did or didn’t do at the combine, I’m sure that their business and medical advisors set the agenda. It’s a stretch to say that said agenda shows how they played as seniors.

        Holmes played hurt the bulk of the year. That is not easy.

        Barkley dealt with a lot pressure from the rush and poor countermeasures by Kiffin, Kiffin’s predictable offense, a bunch of uncorrected penalty issues, and a lot of fumbles. AND his own poor judgment at times, to be sure.

        Either of them could have transferred when the sanctions hit. Barkley not only could have, but should have, left after 2011.

        Holmes was academic All-America or something like that and Barkley won a national athlete/scholar/public service award.

        Were they perfect? Who is? They did plenty. Let’s move on without attacking their respective characters.

        • Cheap seats

          I certainly hope that MB doesn’t have a type 3. If that’s the case, he could only bait teams into thinking his shoulder is ready to go for next year. With type 3, he won’t be having a pro day, either.

          If the shoulder injury never happened, I still think he was better off coming out this year because he isn’t against the QB-stacked class of last year.

          If I were a GM, I’d be concerned of Holmes’ durability. Like you said, he had the knee/leg issues the entire year and now he has the pec strain. If you watched him against elite DT’s/NT’s, he didn’t do too well as years past.

  • Ben Factor

    I’ve been on Scott’s case lately, but this post by him is ON THE MONEY.

    I want to be clear that I don’t know a thing about Tommie Robinson, and I
    am not attacking his credentials or ability. I hope he’s a great
    teacher and coach.

    Nonetheless, what exactly was the point of replacing Kennedy Polamalu with Tommie Robinson? KP was the only USC guy, popular with players, a very good recruiter, and I have yet to hear that he was not a skillful coach. What was Blondie thinking?

    I have my doubts about Kiffin’s coaching, and they may be wrong. But I have no doubt that he’s a PR moron. The worst I can imagine.

    • RallyMonkeyUSA

      Wtf is so “on the money” about his “story”… He posted the same thing that just about every other usc football website posted, only 24 hours later.

      • Ben Factor

        My apology. I didn’t see other blogger/writers state that, in the end, the KP-to-Robinson didn’t facilitate adding a new strategic offensive voice to the mix–it seems to have served any useful purpose at all.

        • marvgoux1

          The critics would criticize Scott if he didn’t report on the Robinson hire.

    • Cheap seats

      I don’t know where any of those rumors came from that Kiffin was going to hire an OC that would bring much to the table.

      Anyone who knows Kiffin’s brief history as a HC will see that all of his “coordinators” on offense did not call the plays nor were they guys that you wanted calling plays.

      His very first OC he hired was Greg Knapp. The guy was relieved of calling plays 3 seasons ago in the NFL and showed he was truly garbage last year.

      • Ben Factor

        You’re right. I was naive, and hoped that maybe there was a larger plan in removing KP, when it became clear that he was so popular with players, acclaimed by them for his coaching. In addition, he was a distinguished recruiter, and the only USC guy on staff. Surely, he wasn’t just casually discharged!

        Turns out it was just Kiffin feeling uncomfortable with criticism, even behind closed doors. What a masterful leader of men. And so good at managing PR, as well.

        I guess the proof is in the W’s next year, but Kiffin sure knows how to step in it.

  • betomas

    Clay Helton will COMPLETELY SUCK as OC…if that’s the case, Kiff shouldve kept Pola & shouldve given him playcalling authority.

  • As much as I like both Barkley and Holmes, I never got the feeling that they were “hungry” players. Hungry as in desperate, internally motivated, the hunter as opposed to the the hunted. Did they set a bad tone?

  • ThaiMex

    Tommie Robinson will be “ON THE BEACH” by January of next year should he decide to take the “SWEET” offer from SUCks. Hope Tommie holds out for a multi year GUARANTEED deal….Just remember….CONTRACTS were meant to be broken. Funny how we haven’t seen Coaches pounding down the doors at SUCks wanting to be a part of The Finest Coaching Staff in College Football.
    UN believable….but so was Number 1 to UN!!!!!!!
    Can I get a big “MERCY NURSE” shout out from all my torgan QUEER buddy’s out there….especially “El Be Cee” and you my little dark Gypsy friend AMIR! (ARRRREEEECCCCCHHHHH……that is the sound of the Camel when in HEAT!!!!)
    fit on LIMBO U!!!!!!!!!

  • steveg

    somehow oc register has him on staff same day wolf says he is a maybe. where were those “sources”. what a fraud.