Archive for the ‘USC football’ Category

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Updated: Lane Kiffin New USC Head Coach

January 12, 2010

It’s Official!  Lane Kiffin is USC’s new head coach and he’ll bring Dad Monte and former USC assistant Ed Orgeron with him.

As reported by USC Rips It

There will be a press conference from USC’s Heritage Hall at 4pm on Wednesday.

UPDATE:

NORM CHOW IS COMING BACK TO USC! OMFG!!!!!!!

Did USC just lose Pete Carroll but rebound with the BEST coaching staff in the BCS? It sure looks like it! This is EXCITING!!! (And I never thought I’d say that after losing Pete Carroll.)

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End of an Era: Pete Carroll & USC 2001-2009

January 11, 2010

Football Fiends,

All weekend the rumors have been flying around the Internet and ESPN. Beloved USC Coach Pete Carroll – in talks with the Seattle Seahawks? Say it isn’t so Pete! But alas, it is so.  Carroll officially handed in his resignation at USC on Sunday evening.

All week I will do a retrospective of the Pete Carroll years here on Gridiron Goddess. Most Trojan fans look at his era as having two distinct periods 2001-2005 and 2006-2009.

Carroll brought glory back to the USC football program. After mediocre runs by Ted Tollner and Larry Smith and the second coming of John Robinson, USC football found itself in the dark period known as the Hackett years. Paul Hackett was disastrous for USC football.

When Pete Carroll came in, he turned it around. He exuded the boundless energy and enthusiasm of a teenager. He embraced USC’s traditions and customs and forged a few of his own. Open practices, famous alumni stopping by for pep talks,  his infamous pranks – Carroll embodied everything we love about USC for nine years.

He will be missed. All weekend my Trojan friends and I have been in mourning. How can you replace Pete? You can’t. You just move forward. You remember what it was like when you had the perfect coach for your team. We’re incredibly grateful for the run we had with Carroll at the helm.

In his nine seasons at USC, Carroll went 97-19, winning two national championships,  coaching three Heisman Trophy winners, playing in seven consecutive BCS Bowls and winning seven Pac-10 titles. He’s sent a crazy impressive 53 Trojans to the NFL over eight seasons. Expect 10 or more to join those ranks this year as well.

The entire USC family owes Coach Carroll a debt of gratitude. Never has it been more fun and more exciting and more spirited and more USC than in the Pete Carroll years.  He leaves a gaping hole where his giant personality and huge heart resided. Heritage Hall will be quieter without Pete. Sure, we’ll get a new coach and we’ll be a great team again. USC is still USC with or without Pete Carroll.

But it will never be the same.

Pete Carroll and the University of Southern California were a perfect match for each other. The kind of kismet that happens once in a lifetime.

Next up: A look at Pete’s  introduction to USC and his 2001-2002 Trojan football teams.

-Your Gridion Godddess

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USC vs Stanford: Rumors of the demise of the dynasty are greatly exagerrated

November 16, 2009

Hello Football Fiends!

Did you know Stanford’s Jim Harbaugh is a giant flaming stinking pile of isht? You didn’t? Well now you do and trust me, I’ll remind you again and again.  Look, I give the guy all the credit in the world for the coaching job he’s done at Stanford over the past three seasons. Stanford is a difficult program to get to succeed what with the school’s pesky academic requirements and yet Harbaugh took a 1-11 team and three seasons later had them pull off back to back upsets of top ten ranked teams. Impressive. However, the man needs a giant personality transplant. What a nasty piece of work he is. He seems to have a giant chip on his shoulder where USC football and Pete Carroll are concerned. Well his shit talking, rudeness, and mocking will be tolerated no longer. The USC Mafia will call him out and He. Will. Pay.

Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, let’s address all these ridiculous “The Fall of Troy: The Dynasty is Dead” statements the press has been screaming from their pulpits. People. Let’s get real. USC has the talent, it has the depth, it has Pete Carroll. After seven years at the top of the Pac-10 pile, and with coaching attrition the likes of which no other major collegiate program has (a whole post dedicated to that will go up this week) Pete Carroll’s Trojans were due a rebuilding year.

Three losses is not the end of the freaking world folks. Nor is it the end of the elite status of USC football. Let’s take a look at what Pete Carroll has accomplished in his years at USC:

2001: 6-6-0 (5-3-0 Pac-10) Loss in the Las Vegas Bowl to the University of Utah,  Not Ranked

2002: 11-2 (7-1 Pac-10) Pac-10 Champs, Finished the season #4, Carson Palmer Heisman, Beat Iowa in the Orange Bowl, lost to Kansas State and Washington State

2003: 12-1 (7-1 Pac-10) Pac-10 Champions, AP National Champions, Beat Michigan in the Rose Bowl, finished season ranked #1 AP  #2 BCS, only loss was to Cal by 3 in triple overtime

2004: 13-0 (8-0 Pac-10) Pac-10 Champions, AP and BCS National Champions, Matt Leinart Heisman, Beat Oklahoma in the Orange Bowl for the BCS Nat’l Championship, Wire to wire AP #1

2005: 12–1 (8–0 Pac 10) Pac-10 Champions, Reggie Bush Heisman, Played Texas in the Rose Bowl for National Championship and lost, end season ranked #2 Only loss of season to Texas in Nat’l Championship game

2006: 11–2 (7–2 Pac-10) Pac-1o Champions, Beat Michigan in the Rose Bowl, finished season #4. Lost to Oregon State and UCLA

2007: 11–2 (7–2 Pac-10) Pac-10 Champions, Beat Illinois in the Rose Bowl, finished season ranked #2 in the Coaches Poll, #3 in the AP Lost to Stanford and Oregon

2008: 12–1 (8–1 Pac-10) Pac-10 Champions, Beat Penn State in the Rose Bowl, finished season ranked  #2 in the Coaches Poll and #3 in the AP, Lost to Oregon State

Folks, those are some pretty consistent numbers. So we have three losses so far this season, so what. Consider the case of the University of Florida football program.  Urban Meyer took over the Gator football program at the start of the 2005 season. They went 9-3. The following year, in 2006, Florida won the SEC and the BCS National Championship game.

Then 2007 rolled around and the Gators lost 4 games. They lost to  Auburn, LSU, Georgia and Michigan (in the Capital One Bowl) and ended the season ranked #13.  Tim Tebow won his Heisman that year.  Did anyone cry “end of an era” “The dynasty is over” back then? Hell no. In fact, for years after the Miami Hurricanes and Florida Seminoles started dropping off the national radar, they were also still given the benefit of the doubt. Words like rebuilding and phrases like “a down year” were bandied about. The media stressed the rich recruiting in the state of Florida and stated that the Gators (or Hurricanes or ‘Noles depending on the year) would be back.

So why not cut USC some of that same slack folks? We’ve got a true freshman at QB who has a bad habit of throwing balls into coverage. We’ve got a new offensive coordinator who has shown some of the worst play calling in FBS division football. Our defense is…bizarrely slow and out of position most of the time. We’ve got discipline and chemistry problems. Sometimes those things take a season to work out. Sure, that hasn’t really happened in the Pete Carroll era of USC Football yet–but let’s face it, all those John David Booty led teams, while successful, didn’t really set the world on fire. Matt Barkley will mature and with that maturity he will become a stronger player and USC will rise to the top of the Pac-10 and BCS once again.

And you know what? It’s just one season. So stop rubbing your hands together in glee celebrating USC’s fall from grace. While many streaks do die this year (seven straight Pac-10 championships, seven straight BCS bowls, seven straight 11 win seasons, etc), this is no cause for true alarm. Pete Carroll and the Men of Troy will work the kinks out.

And when they do, boy, I wouldn’t want to be Jim Harbaugh or the Stanford Cardinal. The complete lack of class they showed on Saturday will be paid back to them. You can’t keep USC down for long, especially not with Big Balls Pete at the helm.

-Your Gridiron Goddess

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Well that was depressing…

November 14, 2009

And I am sure, Football Fiends, that I will have a whole fucking lot to say about tonight’s loss to Stanford tomorrow. Right now, well, Jim Harbaugh is an ASS. Going for 2 point conversion when up by 27? Way to show good sportsmanship Asshole.

See? This is why I need a little distance from tonight’s debacle before I can write about it.

We’re 4-3 in the Pac-10. Gah!

Am going to go watch bad romantic comedies now. Then I can convince myself the tears are for the shmaltzy movie, not my beloved Trojans’ third loss of the season.

(Reports of the Dynasty being over are greatly exagerrated. More on that later. But hello, Florida lost 3 games in 2005 and no one crowed about the crumbling of their program. )

OK really, I need to not think about this right now.

-Your Gridiron Goddess

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USC v Stanford: Keys to the Game

November 13, 2009

So yeah USC v Stanford.  I can’t say I’m looking forward to this game. In fact, I dread it.

I am about as big a Trojan fan as they come. My car’s license plates are LOVSCFB (Love SC football). I passionately USC+v+Stanford+OWttMaEjzDOlrooted for my team throughout the dark days known as the 1990s. I plotted ways to take Paul Hackett out. Anything to help my Trojans. So it pains me to say this, but: We very well could lose this game.  I would not be surprised if we do.

We’ve been riddled with injuries. We have no true team leadership. We’ve played six of our nine games on the road. We’ve played five ranked opponents.  We now come home to the Coliseum to face Stanford. And we’re beaten up. And the rose colored glasses have been ripped from the eyes of both fans and players alike.

We face Stanford, who has handed USC its last three losses in the Coliseum and is coming off a big win over Oregon.  However, we have one big fat advantage going into this game:  Some of the key injuries that have hampered the Trojans all season are healing.  The biggest advantage for the Trojans is the return of the powerful and dynamic fullback Stanley Havili. Havili gives the offense a big boost in firepower and playmaking. Tight end Anthony McCoy is expected to play this weekend. Linebacker Malcolm Smith and defensive end Everson Griffin return and look to restore some of the power to their Trojan team that was lacking last week against ASU.

WR Damian Williams is still doubtful for Saturday, which could present an issue for this young offense. Center Kristofer O’Dowd is still out.  USC is starting true freshman Devon Kennard at strongside linebacker. You can’t underestimate the loss of Williams, as he’s been the most consistent play maker for Matt Barkley. The biggest evidence of chemistry on this Trojan team is between Barkley and Williams.

The Trojans are not lacking in talent or depth. They never are. But where this 2009 team differs from other Trojan teams of the Pete Carroll era is in discipline and chemistry. Last week at ASU the Trojans had 9 penalties for 98 yards. That’s inexcusable. Where is the leadership on this team?  Surely the revolving door on the coaching staff can’t help (and will be addressed in a future post).  QB Matt Barkley is 19 years old.  Basically, Trojan fans are spoiled and this is a rebuilding year that has been nearly a decade in the making.

On Twitter last night, a friend asked me if Carroll has hit the end of his prime. I don’t believe he has. He’s only been at USC since 2001. I believe the true problem lies in the new coaching staff.  Offensive coordinator Jeremy Bates is an NFL guy and has sucked calling plays for the Trojans. It makes one wonder if he’s reviewed the tapes from 2001-2008. Because this 2009 offense is not a Trojan offense. Rocky Seto, the defensive coordinator, has some truly odd schemes going this year. Odd and ineffective.

I said last week that this Trojan team bore an eerie resemblance to the Paul Hackett teams of a decade ago. And for any Trojan fan that lived through that dark era in history, it was enough to make you sick. But this isn’t a Paul Hackett coached team. It’s a Pete Carroll team. We don’t call him Big Balls Pete for nothing.

Can we win this game? Of Course We Can. The only thing beating the Trojans right now is themselves. The penalties, the lack of chemistry and discipline, the anemic play calling, the injuries.  We have the talent.  We’re just lacking in experience.

I predict it will be a close one in the Coliseum on Saturday. It’s Homecoming for USC, and I really don’t see this team dropping a game at home especially on Homecoming. Look for another ugly win by the Trojans.

Follow me on Twitter @GridironGoddess

(This post was originally posted to Buster Sports)

-Your Gridiron Goddess

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College Football Picks Week 5: Who will go down this weekend

October 1, 2009

Week 5 Final: 11-6

Week 4 Final:11-5

Week 3 Final: 14-2

Week 2 Final: 11 – 4

Week 1 Final: 10 – 4

Hey Football Fiends!

My money is on Miami beating Oklahoma. Of course I don’t really EXPECT the ‘Canes to beat the Sooners, but I sure HOPE they do!

BYU over Utah State

Pitt over Louisville

South Florida over Syracuse

Florida State over BC

Bama over Kentucky

Ole Miss over Vandy

Notre Dame over Washington

LSU over UGA

Oklahoma over Miami

ASU over Oregon State

UCLA over Stanford

USC over Cal

Tennessee over Auburn

Michigan over Michigan State

Penn State over Illinois

GA Tech over Mississippi State

Wake Forest over NC State

-Your Gridiron Goddess

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Stafon Johnson Update: 10pm

September 28, 2009

USCRipsit.com is reporting that as of 9pm tonight USC RB Stafon Johnson is still in surgery for the neck/throat injury he sustained this morning during his weight training. Johnson was working at the bench press when the injury occurred.

ETA: @BrandonJHancock (10pm) Latest word… Stafon in Surgery to reconstruct vocal cords.

ETA 2: From the LA Times

USC running back Stafon Johnson is still in surgery at California Hospital Medical Center near downtown. His condition was “critical but stable” as of about 7:20 tonight, according to a hospital spokesperson.

Friends and family of Johnson have gathered at the hospital, waiting for him to return from surgery which began about five hours ago.

Johnson was injured this morning while lifting weights at the school.

The senior from Dorsey High was just starting a set of bench press lifts when he apparently lost control of the bar and it landed on his neck. He was reportedly spitting up blood and was taken by ambulance to the hospital, where surgery began sometime around 2 p.m., according to family friend John Eatman, a former high school teammate.

Eatman was among about a dozen friends and family members gathered in hospital waiting room this evening. “Right now we don’t know anything,” Eatman said. “We’re just hoping he’s all right.”

Johnson’s mother, Kim Mallory, was at the hospital but declined comment through a family spokesperson.

ETA 3:  10:30pm RT @BrandonJHancock Stafon out of surgery now. My thoughts and prayers with #13 and Family.

ETA 4: 11:07pm According to ABC7: Stafon Johnson expected to make full recovery and though he will be out all of THIS season, his prognosis says Stafon should be back in the Cardinal & Gold #13 next season.

Please keep Stafon and his family in your prayers.

FIGHT ON!