USC Trojans This & That — 10/5

Does Clay Helton ever throw his team or players under the bus? There are two schools of thought on this topic. One says he never does. That’s the Gentleman Clay version.

The other says he does, but just couches the criticism under the usual coaching go-to, “We just failed to execute when it mattered.”

The Athletic  —  Mike Leach caused a stir when he called his team “fat, dumb, happy and entitled” following Washington State’s 38-13 loss at Utah. Have the coaches you covered ever called players out in the media to that extent, and, if so, what were the ramifications?

Antonio Morales (covers USC for The Athletic): Clay Helton hasn’t since I started covering him last season, and I wouldn’t expect him to in the future.

David Lombardi (covers STAN and CAL): I think most coaches call out their players — albeit in a less overt way — when they blame losses and other failures on a “lack of execution.” It’s actually rare to hear a coach blame his own play-calling; typically it’s the execution of those play calls — by definition, the players’ responsibility — that gets the blame. I personally hate this because coaches come up short on the schematic end way more frequently than they’d care to admit, and I don’t think this is the most effective leadership style. But as far as coaches that I’ve covered, the last one to call out players as overtly as Leach was … Leach himself. But at least he does it directly. And it was way better the time before: In 2012, Leach called his players “empty corpses” and “zombies.”

Doug Haller (ASU): Not to that extent. I think every coach calls out players to some degree. Most simply say, “We had a solid game plan, we just couldn’t execute.” That, of course, translates to, “Had the idiot players did what we asked, we would’ve won.” It’s all about phrasing. Calling players “fat, dumb, happy and entitled” is probably a bit much, but as long as it’s directed at the group and not one kid, I don’t have a big problem with it.

theathletic.com

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TrojanMPA90
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Stanford leading Washington 20-10. Hate to say it but good coaching would have resulted in USC winning last weekend.

PN4SC
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Don’t ask me why, but I still derive great pleasure watching the bruins get humiliated by a team that had lost 18 of 19 conference games. Its too bad it was on the PAC 12 network, and nobody got to see it.

TrojanMPA90
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I hope we roll on UCLA this year.

illinoisusc
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Well Chip……wow…….I thought we were bad.

TrojanMPA90
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Wonder if they have another rally in them.

Trojan5
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Here is my 3 point pitch to Urban:
—Resurrect a once proud football power. Be a hero to grateful Trojans all over the world.
—-Be the first HC to win a NC at 3 schools. Become a legend.
—-Bitchslap the PAC-12 all day , everyday.

Did I miss anything?

USCJojo
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Face towards SEC country and yell out, “ We’re back!”

RialtoTrojan
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We could offer to let him ride Traveler into the stadium.

TrojanMPA90
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We need an Athletic Director to hire him.

Trojan5
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An AD would make hiring a GC easier

tomas6
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Is it true that Urban Meyer will be the next USC Head Coach? Mark May believes Urban Meyer will be next USC head coach – Sports Illustrated. Mark May made a bold statement when he said that Urban Meyer becoming USC’s next head coach was a “done deal.”

Trojan96
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A former Trojan captain told me yesterday that the good news is that SC is on a bye this weekend and they can’t lose. 😂. 5 weeks into the season and I have to think this air raid gimmick offense is not what we were sold. Our O-Line is so bad that we have to use a scheme to try to compensate their poor play. The team is poorly disciplined and coached. Yes, there has been some subtitle improvements with the D-Line and secondary. I think that is solely due to the new position coaches who preach a competition mentality.… Read more »

Trojan5
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Watching Auburn -Florida and 2 things popped out to me. 1) Both teams tackle well. 2) Both teams maintain the edge. Wouldn’t it be nice if USC could do those 2 things?

LawyerJohn
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The responses to the new legislation of ‘payment to athletes’ is heavily negative. As one said, only the elite of the elite will find a market for their image. What about the lesser athletes on the team?– Will this foment resentment…

Sorry for all this gabbing today, but with no SC football I have time on my hands.

LawyerJohn
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SC losses take a heavy toll on me. I don’t care much for the Rams, Lakers or Dodgers, their losses don’t crucify me like a Trojan loss. SC is the only sports team I follow. But my writing about the team, whether positive or negative, is not going to change a damn thing, so I accept the present reality for what it is, and hope for a better tomorrow… Besides, in a peculiar way Trojan football is more interesting than when they were dominating during Carroll’s first years. Many of Pete’s games were wipe-outs, yawners, (have you watched Alabama’s crowds… Read more »

PN4SC
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I disagree completely. I was enthralled during Pete’s run, couldn’t get enough of those games. Nothing too interesting about watching SC ‘s superior talent fall short, due to a completely inept coach. Hopefully, our long National nightmare will be over soon!

Jamaica
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I agree, I absolutely was intrigued at how PC would make the halftime adjustments which he was uncanny in. There were times his teams were behind at the half and would come out to dominate the 2nd half. You had to be on the edge of your seat watching what happened.

usc50
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This is one of the reasons that Helton should be replaced. He is absolutely incapable of making adjustments. PC had that knack and it shows with the NCAA championships and super bowl rings. A HC has to adjust to the other team and know how to counter. The other problem is Helton does not pick the best coach for the job especially at the beginning of his tenure. He had NFL stars which made things look ok. And the lack of discipline leads to poor tackling. A HC leads and just don’t see Helton leading. Just saying the right things… Read more »

LawyerJohn
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In other news, is anybody going to the sucla-Oregon St. game tonight? I have been in half-filled or less stadiums with little fan spirit, and the football on the field takes on the appearance of a scrimmage, not a real game.

RialtoTrojan
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I would only go if I were a parent of a band member. I am not really happy that UCLA loses so badly, loses yes badly no. What’s the fun in beating a team that doesn’t fight back? I don’t know many Trojan fans who though we’d manage to lose last season and not many believe we should lose this season. The only Ucla away games I have attended we lost. Once I took the pastor who performed my wedding, we probably lost because I had to keep my tongue in check. I’ll go to hell for thinking expletives, but… Read more »

Jamaica
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One team has to lose this game.