If It's Friday, It's Time For A USC Notes Column
One thing I try to do is give readers an idea of what is happening at USC from the inside.
So I will recount a conversation I had with an administrator this week about what ails the football program.
"There is no real fear factor," the administrator said. "The players think they can do whatever they want because they have gotten away with it the past three years. Will it change? We haven't seen an indication yet."
What does this mean exactly?
If you just watch USC on TV, you saw cornerback Isaiah Langley go after quarterback JT Daniels during a game, which was unusual. But there are plenty of other things that do not get captured on TV.
A player refused to play against Notre Dame after being upset he was not starting. I've not heard yet of any punishment.
Last year, two players got into a fight in the locker room after a Cotton Bowl practice. Neither was punished.
At the UCLA game, a coach admonished a player for an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty. The player responded by threatening to punch the coach.
At the Utah game, players used profanity toward a staff member who wanted them to cheer for their teammates.
I could go on with more examples. The point is it is hard to tell who runs the program.
USC's recruiting class should get a boost Saturday when wide receivers Bru McCoy and Kyle Ford announce their commitments. But they are wide receivers. If there is a position that can live without major additions it is wide receiver.
I've heard rumors tailback Stephen Carr will go through spring practice and then consider his options. Would you blame him? A tailback in an Air Raid offense could give anyone reason to be skeptical.
This might surprise some but former USC guard De'Anthony Melton has started the past 14 games at point guard for the Phoenix Suns. Melton always fascinated NBA teams but his stock was hurt by not playing last season as USC held him out during the federal investigation scandal.
But Melton's been a pleasant surprise for the Suns, who traded for him in August after the Houston Rockets drafted him.
Meanwhile, former USC forward Chimezie Metu, who wouldn't even play in the NIT for USC last season, is currently in the G League playing for the San Antonio Spurs team in Austin, Texas.
It's been a rough time for USC football players from the late 80's-early 90's, as several of their teammates have passed away. Three members died since 2014: defensive end David Webb (89-92), linebacker Matt Gee (88-91) and linebacker Scott Ross (87-90). In addition, wide receiver John Jackson (86-89) is currently in the hospital after suffering a stroke.
Did you happen to see "Spartacus" was on TV Thursday night. This reminded me that former USC football player/assistant coach Marv Goux, who had an uncredited role in the film as a "trainer."