Ed Orgeron not ruled out of USC coaching search

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

USC athletic director Pat Haden says Orgeron is a candidate for the Trojans' head coaching position.

USC is in the midst of a head coaching search, with high-profile candidates such as Jack Del RioKevin Sumlin and Lovie Smith among the names linked to the position.

One name that should not be dismissed so quickly is current interim head coach Ed Orgeron, and athletic director Pat Haden made it clear Wednesday that Coach O is certainly a possibility for the Trojans:

Orgeron has said he would like to keep the job, and he's brought instant success to a program that was struggling under former head coach Lane Kiffin. Kiffin was fired after a 62-41 home loss to Arizona State, and Orgeron has since led the Trojans to a 5-1 record, with a 5-0 mark in Pac-12 play and a huge upset win over then-No. 4 Stanford on College GameDay. After Kiffin's firing, USC's bowl prospects were in doubt, and the Trojans are now in serious contention for a Pac-12 title berth (and possibly even a Rose Bowl appearance).

The players seem to have responded well to Orgeron, as well, as safety Dion Bailey took to the radio to commend the new coach's leadership, saying "He doesn't really run the program as a dictatorship."

The main thing holding Orgeron back is likely his previous experience as a head coach. At Ole Miss, Orgeron posted a 10-25 record over three years, including a 3-21 mark in SEC play, and was fired after a disappointing loss to Mississippi State.

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