Nursing an injured knee, All-American Marqise Lee will now be forced to deal with an interim head coach for what’s expected to be his final season at USC.
The star wide receiver addressed the firing of Lane Kiffin early this morning, telling the Los Angeles Times it was “rough” hearing the news. Like most, Lee was surprised by the timing of the dismissal, although he didn’t seem overly shocked that his now-former head coach actually got the ax.
“I didn’t think, if it was going to happen, that it would happen early,” Lee told the Times. “My whole thinking was finishing out the season at least. I don’t know. Now we just see where we go from here. I don’t know what to expect. …
“Everybody’s just like, ‘We don’t know as far as coaching-wise how that works.'”
At least for the remainder of the season it will work with assistant coach Ed Orgeron assuming the role of head coach until a permanent successor is found, presumably after the regular season. At a press conference that’s been called for 4 p.m. ET this afternoon, athletic director Pat Haden will address Kiffin’s dismissal, and is expected to confirm during the course of that conversation with the media that Orgeron will indeed serve as the interim head coach.
A meeting with the players is also scheduled to take place, likely before Haden’s press conference.
As for Lee’s health, the paper reported that the receiver was walking around campus with the aid of crutches. It’s yet to be determined the severity of the injury and what if any game time he may miss.