Pat Haden Interviewed 5 Coaches

USC athletic director Pat Haden said he interviewed five candidates for the coaching job and only offered the job to Steve Sarkisian.
“We conducted a very exhaustive and thorough search, pinpointing about 20 candidates and interviewing five of them. We kept coming back to Sark. He is the only one who was offered the job. I believe in my gut that he is the right coach for USC at this time.

““He embodies many of the qualities for which we looked. He is an innovative coach who recruits well and develops players. He is a proven and successful leader. He connects with people. He has energy and passion. He knows how to build a program and create a culture that we value. He is committed to academic success and rules compliance. And he understands the heritage and tradition of USC.””

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  • jetman624

    And which one of those criteria did Ed O not fit exactly? I think Ed O would have stayed on if they had truly landed a big name coach, but Sark is just a slap in the face. What has he done at WA that he would ever be considered for a job like USC?

    I don’t care how different their personalities are, this is Lane Kiffin 2.0. A proven recruiter off the field who hasn’t showed he can do anything extraordinary on the field. This program is back where it was when Kiffin was hired.

    • Jryan

      Why is everyone always saying Sark cant do anything on the field? His offense was ranked 19th nationally and defense was 39th. Not bad for a washington program. Now he takes over a USC program who should get kids just on their name alone. He’s a far better hire than Orgeron was. People wanted Coach O based purely on emotion. I applaud Haden for not making an emotional choice.

      • jetman624

        There is only one ranking that matters– and going 5 wins over .500 in 5 seasons doesn’t get you there.

        • Jryan

          seeing how Washington won 12 games in the previous 4 years before sarkisian, id say thats pretty good. And what was coach o’s record at Ole Miss?

          • jetman624

            Sark took a team that literally had no where to go but up after an 0-12 season and brought them to abject mediocrity– whooopdity doo

            This gets you the keys to a top 5 job in the country? Please…

            Ole Miss was in a different decade for god’s sake. Sark JUST did 5 over .500 in the LAST 5 SEASONS and in the SAME CONFERENCE.

            There were smarter ways to play this. Wrong guy, wrong time…

          • Jryan


            Everyone is on the “bash Sarkisian” bandwagon. He’s the right hire for the job. Sumlin wasnt an option. So you have Sarkisian, Orgeron, and franklin as your real options. They took the best option. Interim coach is the easiest job to have. If you do well, everyone loves you, if you do poorly, you were just the interim coach. O had his chance at ole miss and was HORRIBLE! that cant be disputed. so you get a coach who was pretty good in a tough conference. A good recruiter who is a SO CAL guy. Haden is a smart man, and thats why he didnt buy into the Coach O hype.

          • jetman624

            How does taking a 0 win team to mere mediocrity that never competed for anything in their division make you the “right hire” for US freaking C?

            This is not about bashing Sark as a person, its about bashing Haden for choosing him based on his “qualifications”, or lack there of.

            2 years from now, after the sanctions have wound down and Ed has his shot would be the time to get the big hire– the smart hire. If things didn’t pan out for Ed, of course…

          • Jryan

            its not always wins and losses. if thats all you look at, then you would want NIU coach or maybe Fresno st coach. There is a lot more into a hire than just a record…

          • jetman624

            Of course, context is always important. In this case, Sark coming from the same conference, not a lot of assumptions need to be drawn.

      • Cheap seats

        I don’t think anyone is saying Sark is a “terrible” coach, more so that USC can do better.

        If we were simply settling on a “USC guy”, Coach O was all that and more.

        Since many big names kept getting mentioned, I think most (including me) was not going to be pleased unless we landed Gruden, Peterson, Sumlin, etc.

        In the end, I don’t think any of the rumored “list” was really being considered. It’s more likely that Haden’s list didn’t resemble the one going around in the press at all.

        • Ben Factor

          Gruden never expressed interest. Peterson declined. Supposedly, Haden soured on Sumlin as he did his diligence (details unavailable).

        • B.Miller

          Gruden wasnt interested
          Petersen withdrew his name.. not comfortable with Big media, Alum and Boosters.
          Sumlin, just signed a big deal.

      • B.Miller

        Very good point

  • BruinAZ

    What a load of crap… mean he is the only one that would take the job other than Orgeron – who would have been a MUCH better choice! Good luck with that Pat!

  • Guest

    SuC is now the school for “on-the-job” training!

  • Dennis Hogan

    I will be surprised if he survives his first contract.

  • Dennis Hogan

    Who were the other 4? Apparently, Orgeron was never interviewed.

    • Trojan Hoarse

      Now you really didn’t expect Wolfie to provide us with ALL of the facts, did you?

  • What a relief to Westwood!

    • Goatboy Kiffin

      the whole Pac is just laughing … why wouldn’t they most have beaten Suckisian by 40 at least a few times

  • 22

    I was surprised by the selection, but you never know how a new coach is going to turn out. At UCLA, Dan Guerrero’s first two hires seemed reasonable (Karl Dorrell and Rick Neuheisel), but didn’t work out and his third hire, Jim Mora has done well. I have heard Steve Sarkisian at coaching clinics and he seems to be a good guy. I hope he does well. I am sorry for Coach O. Thanks for everything, Ed and may everything work out well for you in the future.

    • Goatboy Kiffin

      fatty snark is all talk … his teams just suck

  • i don’t think calling an agent and him saying, “not interested” qualifies as an “interview”….we know he didn’t actually interview his two top choices, Petersen and Sumlin….why does Hadden play you trOXans for a bunch of fools??

    • Cheap seats

      Didn’t YOU get interviewed?

    • lenlen

      actually he had a face to face with Peterson

  • Toejam For Life

    It looks like Haden is satisfied with Water Polo and Women’s Track and Field! Time to put a coat of permanent blue paint on the Victory Bell because it will be that color for a long time…
    The fall of Troy will continue on…

  • Stu Azole

    rules compliance? Bwahahaha!

  • Toejam For Life

    Did Pat Haden require that Sarkiffin ditch the visor on the sidelines?

    • HeySUCs

      Sark does inherit Kiffy Goats sombrero. Its on display in Loser Hall.

  • Goatboy Kiffin

    5 interviews and you kept coming back to fat Snark LOL …what a joke Enjoy the losing

  • oneillwatch

    I would get my gut checked if I were Pat Haden…

  • HeySUCs

    What a tough SUC crowd. Seems like Haden has made a lot of enemies and nobody is happy with Sark, the .500 coach, got the job. Oh well, since SUC is now the second string chump university in LA, Sark fits right in.

  • B.Miller

    Not mad at all by this hire.. Makes sense, but will it be successful.
    Rather keep Pendergast defense than Wilcox defense.
    Tupoi is a monster recruiter too.