- Oddsmakers Show Familiar Names in Line for USC post
- Cincy’s Fickell, Penn State’s Franklin Posting Best Numbers
- Could Trojans Take a Trip Down Memory Lane?
With the firing of Clay Helton in a high-profile job such as USC, online sportsbooks are already casting odds on who will be the Trojans’ next head coach.
Thank you Coach Helton for all you have given to USC Football and the entire USC community. Your integrity, compassion, and leadership made an immeasurable impact on every player and staff member over the last 12 years. We wish you nothing but the best moving forward. Fight On! pic.twitter.com/vFANO0ddYP
— USC Football (@USC_FB) September 13, 2021
According to oddsmakers, there is a plethora of names already making their way through the football world as Cincinnati Bearcats head coach Luke Fickell (+600) and Penn State head coach James Franklin (+600) are tied atop the leaderboard.
Fickell was hired by USC AD Mike Bohn when he was the athletic director at Cincinnati, so there is an immediate attraction for oddsmakers. Fickell’s background in steep in his home state of Ohio where he played for the Buckeyes and then coached at Ohio State as an assistant for 14 years may make this move dicy. All he has done with the Bearcats is turn them into a national power as they have gone 33-6 over the last three years and two games.
Franklin’s name is always coming up for a job opening, or a potential job opening as well saw with the potential opening at Michigan last season when speculation was that Jim Harbaugh would be fired.
Helton finished 46-24 as he led USC to a Pac-12 Championship and a Rose Bowl victory in six full seasons as the USC coach. The next person in line had better have the panacea for getting Troy into the BCS Playoffs, or the ax is certain for fall once again.
On the Set
Former Boise State and Washington head coach Chris Petersen and former Oklahoma head coach Bob Stoops are cozy on the Fox Sports Big Noon Kickoff set — for now. However, both names are in the crosshairs of sportsbooks.
Stoops (+800) is in retirement and doesn’t show any signs of wanting to reverse field and coach.
Iowa State head coach Matt Campbell (+1000) and Minnesota’s PJ Fleck (+1000) are receiving plenty of attention from sportsbooks as the successor to Helton.
Campbell has built Iowa State into a perennial Big 12 contender and has established quite a reputation inside the game as he flipped the football program in his second season.
— USC Football (@USC_FB) September 15, 2021
Fleck orchestrated a turnaround at Western Michigan where he took the Broncos to a 13-0 record and the Cotton Bowl where WMU eventually lost to Wisconsin, although he was off to Minnesota when that game was finally played. He has brought the Gophers into immediate respectability with an 11-2 record in his third season and a win over Auburn in the Outback Bowl two years ago.
Clemson offensive coordinator and associate head coach Tony Elliott (+2000) is one of the next assistant coaches to be on the rise to a high major program.
It’s probably less likely that former Houston Texans head coach and current Alabama offensive coordinator Bill O’Brien (+1100) or former Ohio State head coach and current Jacksonville Jaguars boss Urban Meyer (+1200) would take the job.
Meyer’s two national championships at Florida and his run with the Buckeyes are legendary as he went 83-9 and led OSU to a national championship. Meyer had responded to the rumors on Wednesday that there was “no chance” that he would leave the Jaguars for USC.
O’Brien, on the other hand, went with Nick Saban as Alabama’s offensive coordinator and could be more of a prospect if there is interest from Bohn. Saban has been known as a coach who takes in others in the profession and gives them a chance to reboot and move forward once again.
Maybe the most ironic twist of the entire USC search is the appearance of former USC head coach and current Ole Miss boss Lane Kiffin (+3000) appearing on odds boards.
Trojans Favored Over Cougars on Saturday
Southern Cal opened as a 9.5-point favorite over Washington State on Saturday in Pullman as the line is at (-10) on some odds boards but is as low as (-8) on others.
With Helton’s firing and Donte Williams taking over the program for Week 3, the transitioning in the season is the reason the USC has fallen to a consistent 8.5-point favorite with many oddsmakers. The OVER/UNDER has 62.5 points with the UNDER taking (-115) odds with the OVER sitting at (-105).
The Trojans are giving (-335) on the moneyline, with Washington State getting (+280).