Make that a double expresso (Image:USC Scout)As far as who they get, Oshea thinks it will be Riley from Oregon State. I have to agree with him that there is no way Kiffin goes to USC, absent a panic hire ala Ron Zook for Florida. Not to say I don't think it would be hilarious personally, something I think the Senator would agree with. No matter what kind of glue Mike Garrett (SC's AD) is sniffing, he'd have to get pretty desperate to hire The Kiffer.
My guess is that they'll make a run at one of three folks: Mike Riley, who is currently at Oregon State, Jeff Fisher, who is currently coaching the Tennessee Titans, and Jack DelRio, who is currently coaching the Jacksonville Jaguars. Both Fisher and DelRio played football for the Trojans. Both fit the NFL coach with great defensive pedigree mold (DelRio was co-MVP of the 1985 Rose Bowl as a Linebacker). I think any of the three would be great for them, but if they get Fisher, that'd probably be a home run, considering his coaching pedigree and ability to develop pro talent. He has taken a team to the Super Bowl, shown a great ability to both eyeball and coach up talent, and he has a pretty good sideline presence that will resonate with both the players and boosters in Los Angeles.
Where it does matter to us in the SEC will be the assistant hiring process for the new coach. There is a substantial push, both inside the program and by the fans to get Orgeron back to Heritage Hall. While it seems pretty quiet to us in the SEC, the SC people think Orgeron is ready to go back West. He certainly is ready to be a DCordinator again, something he'll never do in Knoxville, absent some pretty startling changes there. He is also rumored to be done with the daily drama of living with Eddie Haskel as your boss. Remember, he is also The Kiffer's recruiting cordinator, so any protracted drama for the next month means some ripe blogging and great opportunity for schools to poach players. Wonder if this is part of the Mike Hamilton/Kiffer narrative about any pub being good pub. The fly in the ointment is Mike Garrett basically blackballing Orgeron, right now. That could change if they get their guy or other factors convince Garrett to change his mind.
I would think, as does Oshea, that whomever they get, there will be push to get Norm Chow to move back to USC from UCLA as the offensive coordinator. That'd provide some awesome drama, as well.
For the rest of the college football firmament, Carroll leaving USC will change the game in recruiting. Southern Cal has been leading the world in recruiting for the past 10 years (not that other programs don't do well with them, just they have nearly patented poaching great out of state talent, just about any place you can name). While snagging Orgeron could help, I would expect them to be less successful in the Southeast and outside California for that matter. A coaching change, plus the glaring mediocrity of the SC defense this year could equal even bigger changes in the pecking order of both the Pac-10 and the national scene. In the short term, there will be players back in the game that have been locked up for some time, both from SC and from Tennessee (if Orgeron leaves).
Thanks to Oshea for helping me out with info. He is beside himself, but handling the drama far better (read: with less drinking) than I would.