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Steve Sarkisian wants Ed Orgeron on his staff

Ed Orgeron AP

In need of a defensive line coach and recruiting coordinator now that Tosh Lupoi is a no-go, USC coach Steve Sarkisian said on Sunday that he would pursue former Trojans assistant Ed Orgeron for a possible staff position.

“I am going to pursue Ed here one more time,” Sarkisian told the “Trojan Brunch” show on ESPNLA 710. “I thought about him again after the game on the ride home. I think when emotions get settled down, and I know that was an emotional time for Ed and not getting named the head coach when he thought he should have been deservedly so, I would have felt the same way. When the emotions settle down, Ed’s a great Trojan and he’s meant a lot to the Trojan family and if we can have that opportunity for him to be part of this football program and be here with us, we’d love to have him.”

Orgeron was the defensive line coach for USC from 1998 until 2005 and also from 2010 until this fall. When Lane Kiffin was fired in late September, Orgeron took over as the interim coach and guided the team to six wins in its final eight games. When Sarkisian was given the head job in early December, a clearly disappointed Orgeron — who wanted the head job — left the program.

Some USC players have a clear emotional investment in Orgeron. Several had “Coach O” scrawled on their taped-up wrists at the Las Vegas Bowl. Bringing Orgeron back would be an emotional lift to a program still trying to rebound from a tumultuous season.

Sarkisian also confirmed earlier reports that offensive coordinator Clay Helton will be retained as on staff.

“We haven’t announced it officially but I am excited to know he is going to be part of the staff,” Sarkisian said. “I think Clay has done just a tremendous job the second half of the season with that offense, with Cody [Kessler], distributing the football to a lot of different players, scoring points, running the football, getting the running backs involved in the passing game and how he handled being the interim coach the last few weeks in a difficult time where there’s a lot of emotion in that locker room. I thought Clay did a masterful job of getting them ready to play and ultimately putting on a great performance.”

Helton joins receivers coach Tee Martin as the only holdovers (so far) from Kiffin’s staff.


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17 Responses to “Steve Sarkisian wants Ed Orgeron on his staff”
  1. pgilbert2013 says: Dec 22, 2013 7:27 PM

    Steve, as a No-cal guy and USC hater, my hats off to your classy gesture.

  2. thekatman says: Dec 22, 2013 8:01 PM

    Another term for you an SC hater is SC admirer, otherwise, why are you reading updates about “The Program”? That’s cool, though. We accept all folks on our websites as long as they remain respectful. Happy holidays…

  3. be4bama says: Dec 22, 2013 8:02 PM

    Merry Christmas y’all

  4. thekatman says: Dec 22, 2013 8:16 PM

    Wouldn’t that be all y’all?

  5. be4bama says: Dec 22, 2013 8:44 PM

    Not to southerners.

  6. thekatman says: Dec 22, 2013 9:36 PM

    In South Carolina That’s how we say it.
    As in, how y’all doing? Or hair all y’all doing? Which is said when addressing a crowd.

  7. be4bama says: Dec 22, 2013 9:42 PM


  8. jdbaker01 says: Dec 22, 2013 9:57 PM

    Sounds good unless of course Orgeron didnt burn any bridges on the way out. Oh yeah, nevermind, refusing to coach at the bowl game, crying+rolling around on the ground pounding your fists and then holding your breath would probably count as burning bridges.

  9. thekatman says: Dec 22, 2013 10:01 PM

    Hsir wad sn sutodpell error…lol

  10. rbeer79 says: Dec 22, 2013 11:00 PM

    Coach O needs to take this deal. They will make him the highest paid DC in the country.

  11. mogogo1 says: Dec 23, 2013 12:18 AM

    A lot more class from Sark than Orgeron showed when he didn’t get the job.

  12. mediocrebob says: Dec 23, 2013 9:03 AM

    Orgeron is a helluva recruiter and kids like playing for him. I think wherever he winds up is lucky to have him. As an Irish fan, I won’t be thrilled if he remains a Trojan. His team definitely responded to him this past season.

  13. mediocrebob says: Dec 23, 2013 9:03 AM

    Of course, they were probably just thrilled they weren’t playing for Kiffin anymore.

  14. rolltide510 says: Dec 23, 2013 10:21 AM

    “Well, it would be pretty confusing for the team and introduce leadership issues to have their old head coach working for their new head coach, but I’m a bad recruiter and they wouldn’t let me bring Tosh so I really need that mush-mouthed Cajun dude. Also, somebody is likely to misinterpret this as being classy, so another plus.”

  15. bigthyme93 says: Dec 23, 2013 11:50 AM

    As much as emotion plays a role in these types of decisions, it would be advisable not to hire coach O because of the internal conflict it will cause with the players and staff. If he wants a head coaching job, allow him to pursue that and leave the Trojan with respect

  16. pgilbert2013 says: Dec 23, 2013 7:41 PM

    Honestly Catman, I truly do not admire your team.. Cheerleaders in those sweaters I do…

    I went to UNLV, so I have no skin in the game. I had a pompous friend whom used to attend these USC parties in SF to watch games and he went from a good guy to a horrible D-CK.

    Never got why people had to change around other USC folks. That’s it… Not exciting, but the truth…arrogance is a bit tiresome at times.

  17. thekatman says: Dec 23, 2013 9:14 PM

    The girls you mention are not cheerleaders.
    They are “the world famous” USC Song Girls, known world wide as the ambassadors of USC Athletics. We have cheerleaders and they can be seen at the West End Zone of the LA Memorial Coliseum and between the 20’s on both sides of the field. The Song Girls are usually in front of the student section.

    It is OK, for your sanity’s sake, to not like our program or our school. That’s your right as a freedom loving US citizen. Just know that the more folks try to degrade us, we know that you are just jealous. That’s all, no problem. Not everyone can be a Trojan.

    We have a saying at Troy.
    You are a member of your school’s alumni and family for 4 years. At USC, you are a member of the Trojan family for life.

    Fight On brother….. and Merry Christmas.

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