Since USC made the decision to fire Clay Helton after their second game, the rumor mill has been churning about who they might be targeting for the coveted job.
And a new report by J. Brady McCollough of the Los Angeles Times says that USC is currently looking at three “warm” candidates for the head coaching job.
The first candidate mentioned in the report is Penn State’s James Franklin – who was said to have “mutual interest” with USC by Dan Patrick.
“By all accounts he’s done a nice job there, you know it’s the next challenge,” Patrick said. “A lot of these coaches think ‘I’m done with this, next challenge.’ Maybe that’s the case, I don’t know. But there’s going to be a lot of names you’re going to hear.”
The next name mentioned with USC is Cincinnati’s Luke Fickell. Since leaving Ohio State, Fickell has established himself as one of the top coaches in the country, and has been tied to some other jobs in the past.
Fickell deflected when speaking on rumors tying him to USC.
“Look, I don’t talk to anybody. I barely talk to my own family during the season,” Fickell said, via the Los Angeles Times. “So I wouldn’t ever talk about it nor would I even answer a phone call or anything like that. It’s not a big deal. It’s nothing but distractions, and for us, it can’t be.”
Perhaps the most interesting candidate being linked to USC is Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy. He’s been one of the rising candidates for NFL openings over the past two seasons, but continuously gets passed up on.
Now, he might be the big name who can bring USC back to prominence.
Like the other two candidates, Eric Bieniemy has maintained that he’s fully focused on his current job. But if any college program can pry Bieniemy from the NFL, it might be USC.
This process is only just beginning, and it feels like USC is still far away from naming their next head coach.
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