Photo by Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

Former USC coach Pete Carroll never thought players needed to get paid

4 Comments

The state of California recently passed a law that would allow college athletes to hire agents and be paid for the use of their name, image and likeness if they desire. The NCAA, naturally, has weighed in to protest the law and is hoping the governor of California decided to hear their case and not sign the bill into law. Former USC head coach Pete Carroll, now the head coach of the Seattle Seahawks in the NFL with a Super Bowl championship to his name, was asked for his opinion on the developments in California. Perhaps not surprisingly, Carroll came on the side of the conversation which suggests players do not need any additional compensation beyond what is provided by a scholarship.

“I’ve never been of the thought that players need to get paid,” Carroll said, according to Joe Fann, Seattle Seahawks insider for NBC Sports Northwest.

Of course, nobody needs to be reminded Carroll was the head coach of former USC running back Reggie Bush (Ok, I guess I just reminded you anyway).The NCAA found Bush had received improper gifts from an agent, which ultimately dropped a series of sanctions on USC including four years of probation, forced the Trojans to vacate a national championship and the entire 2005 season. USC was also placed on a two-year postseason ban and was stripped of 30 scholarships over a period of three years. The Heisman Trust also vacated Bush’s Heisman Trophy from the record book, and USC has removed any ties and references to Bush from the program. USC was handed their sanctions after the 2009 season, at which time Carroll left the Trojans to coach in the NFL with Seattle.

Carroll’s thoughts on the idea of players receiving compensation (legally, of course) are not too surprising, and they are common thoughts expressed by other college football coaches who make millions. In 2009, it was reported Carroll was paid $4.4 million for the 2006-2007 fiscal year, four times as much as USC President Steven B. Sample at the time.

Carroll isn’t the only coach chiming in on the subject. Washington State head coach Mike Leach thinks California has some other issues to be concerned about.

Stunner: College GameDay headed to Athens in Week 4 for No. 7 Notre Dame vs. No. 3 Georgia

Getty Images
6 Comments

You want to talk about an anticlimactic announcement.

Prior to the Week 3 results, there were four Week 4 matchups that would’ve potentially featured ranked teams.  Three of those were No. 11 Utah vs. No. 24 USC (Trojans lost Saturday, of course), No. 10 Michigan vs. No. 4 Wisconsin and No. 8 Auburn vs. No. 16 Texas A&M.

Despite the attractiveness of Madison, the hands-down favorite to be the host campus for ESPN‘s College GameDay show was Athens, provided No. 3 Georgia and No. 7 Notre Dame held serve in Week 3. Saturday’s results? Georgia 55, Arkansas State 0.  Notre Dame 66, New Mexico 14.

So, with that, ESPN confirmed Saturday night that, yes, the GameDay traveling roadshow will set up shop on the UGA campus in Week 4.

According to UGA, the last time College Gameday came to Athens was Sept. 28, 2013, when No. 9 Georgia defeated No. 6 LSU 44-41.

BYU upsets No. 24 USC with game-winning interception in overtime

Photo by Chris Gardner/Getty Images
3 Comments

BYU scored their second straight win against a team from a power conference, and this time they did it on their home field. BYU (2-1) needed overtime to score their first victory against No. 21 USC (2-1) in program history. It came in dramatic fashion with Dayan Ghanwoloku picking off a pass by Kedon Slovis in overtime to seal a 30-27 win. An official video replay review had to confirm the call on the field after fans had already started to strom the field.

 

USC took a 24-17 lead in the fourth quarter thanks in part to bad personnel management by BYU’s special teams. On 4th and 1 form the BYU 32-yard line, the Trojans appeared set to attempt a 50-yard field goal, but BYU head coach Kalani Sitake was forced to burn BYU’s second timeout of the half because they had 12 players on the field. After getting some extra time to think things over, USC head coach Clay Helton opted to let his offense go back on the field and Markese Stepp rewarded him for that decision with a two-yard gain to move the chains. Then, on the very next play, Kedon Slovis took to the air to find Michael Pittman Jr. for a 30-yard touchdown. The ruling of a touchdown was discussed by officials to determine if Pittman should have been flagged for illegally touching the football after stepping out of bounds, and a review upheld the decision on the field.

After cutting the lead to four with a field goal, the BYU defense come up with a controversial stop on 3rd & 8 (officials ruled Pittman had caught a pass out of bounds, although video review showed there was a chance he may have had a foot inbounds), BYU took over around midfield. A big 35-yard pass from Zach Wilson to Gunner Romney picked up 35 yards right away, and two plays later Wilson took the ball himself straight up the middle of the Trojans defense.

But USC responded with a 52-yard field goal off the leg of Chase McGrath, a career-best, to tie the game at 27-27 on the ensuing possession.

USC is now 2-1 all-time against BYU. The two teams played in 2003 and 2004, with the Trojans winning by scores of 35-18 and 42-10, respectively.

USC will jump back into Pac-12 play next week with BYU’s rival, and preseason Pac-12 media favorite, Utah. The Trojans will get the Utes at home in an early pivotal matchup in the Pac-12 with the winner taking the early lead in the Pac-12 South Division standings. Utah was getting a final tuneup at home against Idaho State in Week 3. Utah also opened the season with a victory against BYU.

BYU will welcome another Pac-12 contender to Provo next week when the Washington huskies make the trip to LaVell Edwards Stadium. Washington head coach Chris Petersen is 2-1 all-time against the Cougars, including a 1-1- mark at Boise State.

BYU and No. 24 USC tied at halftime in Provo

Photo by Chris Gardner/Getty Images
Leave a comment

One half is in the books in LaVell Edwards Stadium with BYU looking for a second straight victory against a power conference opponent. The Cougars are engaged in a 17-17 tie with No. 24 USC at halftime and look to continue bringing pressure on USC’s freshman quarterback to create an advantage.

A week after getting his first career start for USC and leading the Trojans to a victory over Stanford, Kedon Slovis made sure USC got off on the right foot in Provo. Slovis opened the game with an eight-yard touchdown pass to Michael Pittman Jr. to cap the game’s opening possession and give visiting USC a quick lead. The two players hooked up for a nine-yard gain on the first play of the game as well. The USC defense forced a punt on their first trip to the field, but Slovis was picked off by BYU’s Payton Wilgar on the third play of the series, and the Cougars were in business with terrific field position. They capitalized with a Dayan Ghanwoloku touchdown run on the goal line shortly after a big run by Ty’Son Williams got the quick drive started.

Slovis was intercepted again on the ensuing possession, once again giving BYU a great starting spot from the USC 27-yard line, but the Trojans defense held firm and limited BYU to a go-ahead field goal. USC answered with a field goal on the next possession, and then the team traded touchdown drives.

Zach Wilson completed a 30-yard touchdown pass to Dax Milne to give BYU a 17-10 lead, but the Trojans tied things up with a five-yard run by Vave Malepeai to cap an 11-play drive.

It’s anyone’s game going to the second half. USC is looking to improve to 3-0 a year after winning just five games.

USC has a wide receiver enter the transfer portal

Photo by Harry How/Getty Images
1 Comment

Things may have gotten off to a nice start for Clay Helton and USC this season, but one Trojan is exploring his options. Sophomore wide receiver Devon Williams has reportedly entered the NCAA transfer portal, thus allowing him to begin evaluating any possible transfer options. Cole Cubelic of SEC Network reported the transfer portal news, via Twitter.

The former four-star recruit chose USC over offers from Oregon, UCLA, Utah, and Alabama, just to name a few. By entering the transfer portal, Williams is allowed to have any contact with any other college football program who may want to recruit him. However, Williams can decide to pull his name out of the portal at any time and stick with USC. The risk is Helton is no longer required to honor Williams’ scholarship and can move on if he feels the need to do so. while most players probably do end up moving on, it is not unheard of for a player to decide to stay put. USC certainly has seen its fair share of transfer portal activity over the last year, including one player transferring from USC to Texas and back to USC all within this calendar year.

Williams appeared in all 12 games for USC as a true freshman, in which he caught four passes for 87 yards and a touchdown. Williams did not play in USC’s season-opening win against Fresno State but did make an appearance last weekend against Stanford. Williams caught one pass for 11 yards in the 45-20 victory for USC over the Cardinal.

While Williams has used one of his years of eligibility as a true freshman, he can still use the 2019 season as his redshirt year because he has not appeared in the limit of four games before burning a year of eligibility. If Williams transfers to another FBS program, he will have to sit out the 2020 season, burning a year of eligibility in the process without any waiver approval from the NCAA. That would leave Williams with two years of eligibility beginning in 2021 with another FBS program barring any waivers.