Steve Sarkisian and Lane Kiffin were both Pete Carroll’s understudies during the USC football dynasty of the 2000s. Kiffin already got his shot as the program’s head coach, and we all know how that turned out. Sarkisian now has a chance to prove he can rescue USC’s program from years of NCAA sanctions.
While discussing his “Win Forever” philosophy with USC students on Wednesday night, Carroll made it clear that Sarkisian would have gotten the job to begin with if the Seattle Seahawks coach had his choice.
“From early on, I tried to get the administration to guarantee that he would be the next coach if I left,” Carroll said, via Rich Hammond of The Orange County Register.
Carroll went on to say that Sarkisian’s “clarity with people” is the reason he hired him as quarterbacks coach. The former Washington coach has already done a great job of handling the Southern California media, which we know can be fairly scrutinizing.
“He knows what USC is about, what it is to work in SoCal and he is going to do a great job,” Carroll added, per Lindsey Thiry of FOX Sports. “I have no doubt in saying that.”
Of course, Carroll’s assertion that he pulled for Sarkisian is easier now that Kiffin’s time as head coach was such a failure. Had Kiffin enjoyed success, I doubt Carroll would have said he wanted Sarkisian to take over for him from the start.
H/T Bleacher Report