USC: Jeff Scott

Examining the candidates for the WRs coach opening

February, 13, 2012
2/13/12
9:34
AM PT
True to his word, USC coach Lane Kiffin has gotten right to work on filling up the three assistant coaching slots created with the departures of Willie Mack Garza, Joe Barry and Ted Gilmore over the last five months.

After saying he hoped to find replacements for all three men by the end of the upcoming week, Kiffin reportedly got Marvin Sanders to replace Garza as the defensive backs coach and Scottie Hazelton to replace Barry as the linebackers coach on Sunday.

Now he has five days left to meet his initial goal by hiring on a receivers coach and giving the new hire ample time to get to know his players before spring practice begins March 6. Let's take a look at who some of the potential candidates are, listed in alphabetical order.

-- Arizona State receivers coach/passing game coordinator DelVaughn Alexander

Alexander might make the most sense of any of the candidates. A former USC receiver and graduate assistant, he's qualified for the post and familiar with the area. Known as an above-average recruiter, he could jump right in and start that part of that job before spring practice even starts.

One potential problem: He just signed on at Arizona State last month under new coach Todd Graham. But that obviously wasn't too much of a deterrent for Kiffin in hiring Sanders, who just latched on at Florida Atlantic in December.

-- Former USC receiver and graduate assistant Keary Colbert

The sentimental choice, a number of current USC players have been campaigning on Twitter for Colbert to get the job.

He, of course, spent the 2010 season as a graduate assistant for the Trojans, coaching the tight ends. He could've kept the same job last year but chose to pursue an NFL comeback -- which he successfully completed, sticking with the Kansas City Chiefs for most of the 2011 season.

Colbert is completely unproven as a recruiter but provides reason to believe he could become a good one.

(Read full post)

LB, DB coaching positions filled

February, 12, 2012
2/12/12
6:03
PM PT
USC coach Lane Kiffin announced the hiring of two assistant coaches at Sunday's Junior Day, according to multiple media reports.

Marvin Sanders will coach defensive backs and Scottie Hazelton will coach linebackers. A program source told ESPNLosAngeles.com the hirings were being finalized Sunday and would be formally announced at some point Monday.

Sanders was hired in December by Florida Atlantic after taking the 2011 season off, resigning from Nebraska last February for "personal and family reasons." In coming to USC, he fills an opening created by Willie Mack Garza's September resignation; grad assistant Sammy Knight had served as the interim position coach during the 2011 season but wasn't seriously considered for the full-time vacancy.

Hazelton has never played or coached at the FBS level but spent the last two seasons as the defensive coordinator at North Dakota State. At a previous stop at the school, he worked with Gus Bradley, who worked with Monte Kiffin in Tampa Bay and now works as the defensive coordinator under Pete Carroll for the NFL's Seattle Seahawks.

Hazelton replaces Joe Barry, who left for the NFL's San Diego Chargers earlier this month. Both Hazelton and Sanders have worked extensively with the Cover-2 defense.

USC now has only one opening to fill -- wide receivers coach -- before spring practice starts March 6. Ted Gilmore left for the NFL's Oakland Raiders last week.

Potential candidates for that job are believed to include former USC receiver and grad assistant Keary Colbert, former UCLA interim head coach Mike Johnson, Arizona State receivers coach DelVaughn Alexander and Clemson receivers coach Jeff Scott, among others.

Kiffin told ESPN.com's Ted Miller last week he hoped to fill all three openings by the end of the upcoming week.

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PASSINGATTCOMPYDSTD
C. Kessler452315382639
RUSHINGCARYDSAVGTD
J. Allen27614895.411
J. Davis1295954.64
RECEIVINGRECYDSAVGTD
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Offense158.2294.6452.8
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