I have to preface this by saying that I am a big fan of Steve Sarkisian. As a BYU fan, how can I not be?
He was at the helm of one of the best seasons the Cougars have ever had.
With that in mind, I think USC may have overlooked some things in the haste of bringing him back at this time. There are multiple reasons why I feel this way.
The first reason is because they didn’t need to make a decision right away. They have close to a month before a bowl game and could’ve used that time to leave no stone unturned at finding the best fit for the program. There are some wonderful coaches out there that would’ve been a solid fit. Coaches such as David Cutcliffe and Gus Malzahn come to mind. Both have had spectacular years thus far and at least deserved some consideration.
Malzahn led one of the biggest turn around’s in college football history in just one year at Auburn and capped it off with two of the most incredible finishes in recent memory.
What Cutcliffe has done as a head coach might be even more impressive. He has taken a school who most sports fans only know as a basketball school in Duke and led it to the ACC championship game and their first ever 10 win season.
If he could do that at a perennial football doormat like Duke then think about what he could do with the resources provided by a powerhouse like USC. It would have no doubt been very impressive.
The second reason is because I don’t think that Sarkisian has done enough to prove himself as a head coach. And it’s not about the years mind you. Experience is nice but talent is much more important in my mind. In his three years with the Huskies he did lead them back to respectability but he couldn’t get them over the hump to being a power house even though Washington has had a ton of talent.
Even if he is the right guy, I think USC brought him in a year too early. Why bring in a brand new guy and have him deal with the lingering sanctions still looming over the Trojans?
What I would have done is gone and gave Ed Orgeron one more year at the helm to lead USC out of their penalties. That would have done a few things.
First you would’ve seen if the last eight games were just a fluke or if Orgeron could really make it as a head coach. If it didn’t work out then you could bring in a new coach without any obstructions getting in his way.
If that coach were the same as this years decision in Steve Sarkisian then he would’ve had one more year to make the Huskies a PAC 12 power and prove his worth.
Clearly Pat Haden and the Trojans have already made their decision as to who should lead them so none of this matters, but I hope it works out better than their last hire because college football is much better when USC is relevant.