Sports Out West

USC AD Pat Haden includes Ed Orgeron on list of possible head coaches

Jeff Gross / Getty Images / November 18, 2013

USC athletic director Pat Haden stated on Tuesday that interim head coach Ed Orgeron will be included on the list of possible head coaches for the football program, according to Garry Paskwietz of ESPN.com and founder of WeAreSC.com.

“What Ed has done has been absolutely remarkable,” Haden said Tuesday night on KFWB-AM. “He is clearly in our eyesight. We understand. It’s not just the fans. We’re sophisticated enough and know enough about this to understand the attributes that he has, and he’s a known quantity.”

Since Orgeron took over as interim head coach, he has been successful in place of Lane Kiffin by going 5-1, including last Saturday’s impressive 20-17 win at the Coliseum over fourth-ranked Stanford. After Saturday’s win he received congratulatory messages from Pete Carroll, Marcus Allen, Anthony Munoz,  and others who have ties with the program.

Orgeron has openly expressed his interest in removing the interim title from his position.

“I want to be the head coach at USC,” Orgeron said Monday during an interview on ESPNU’s “CFB Daily.” “I love being a head coach. I think that it’s something I’m able to do, and do well. And I want to be the head coach at USC when I get the chance. I think I can perform on a very high basis to do what the Trojan family wants me to do.”

Haden has already begun the head coach searching process as it was reported that he interviewed Jack Del Rio, who is currently the Denver Broncos’ defensive coordinator and a former USC All-American. With that said, Haden has made it known that he will take his time in the process to find the long-term solution at head coach for the university.

Haden has a tough task at hand in trying to find a head coach that will lead the program back into the glory days of yearly national championship contention. That answer may be with Orgeron, who has the support of his players and others who have a connection to the program.

Although Oregeron struggled as the head coach of the University of Mississippi going 15-26 over four seasons (2004-07), he may have found lighting in a bottle with USC as evident by the success the team has had under him. Granted it may be too small of a sample size to predict the future, but the players and others around the program have stated that there is an atmosphere with him as the head coach that is similar to that of Carroll.

Via SBNation.com’s Adam Jacobi:

“He’s really made it a fun experience, bringing back the fun in the program, and just really emphasizing us enjoying our time here in the program because he knows that college only lasts for so long so he really wants us to enjoy everything,” said USC safety Dion Bailey during an interview with Max & Marcellus Show on ESPN radio.

There is common belief that if Orgeron is able to lead USC victory in the final two games of the season against Colorado and UCLA, that he may earn the job outright. Whatever the case may be, it ultimately comes down to Haden’s decision. He is the one who will be deciding the future of the program.

This next hire will be Haden’s first for the USC football program, so it is going to be interesting to see who he chooses as USC’s next head coach.

Photo Credit: Jeff Gross / Getty Images 

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Bob Garcia IV

Bob Garcia is a sports journalist from Southern California. He was a reporter for the award-winning newspaper, The Daily Sundial, at California State University, Northridge. You can follow him on Twitter, @BGarcia90.

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