In his first couple of days as USC head coach, Ed Orgeron has sent a clear message — he will look to be more like Pete Carroll than Lane Kiffin.
Today, the USC announced that under the interim head coach the school will reopen practices to the media as well as permit the media to report on injuries.
That’s an about face from Kiffin’s policy to alienate the media as much as possible by first restricting them from talking about injuries and then locking them out of practice all together. Those actions drew a steady rainfall of criticism and created a cloud of negativity over Kiffin that he never seemed to be able to escape.
Orgeron, by comparison, appears ready to start fresh with both the media and the players.
“We turned the page. These kids are resilient,” Orgeron said during the weekly Pac-12 coaches conference call. “I think they’re fired up for a new start.”
Part of that new start is another return to Carroll’s methods, most importantly an emphasis on having fun. For example:
.@DevonKennard42 on changes: “Today, we got cookies! We haven’t had cookies in a couple yrs–We’re looking at it as a new beginning for us”
— ESPNLA 710 Radio (@ESPNLA710) September 30, 2013
Obviously cookies won’t have an effect on how the Trojans play football, but these small gestures indicate that from top to bottom Orgeron will not be running the ship the way his direct predecessor did. And that may be exactly what USC needs.
Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm. FIGHT ON.
— Coach Ed Orgeron (@CoachOUSC) October 1, 2013