USC Football DC Alex Grinch gaining buzz for another head coaching job

Herm Edwards
Herm Edwards / Alex Gould/The Republic / USA TODAY

USC Football Defensive Coordinator Alex Grinch is garnering attention for the Arizona State Head Coaching position that has just opened up in Tempe, with Herm Edwards being fired on Sunday.

The Pac-12 opponent has hired RBs Coach Shaun Aguano as the interim guy in charge, but he will likely not be their permanent solution, as he is in just his fourth year of college coaching. He's never been a head coach or even coordinator at the collegiate level or higher.

First, it was former ASU standout safety and current broadcaster who covers ASU in Jordan Simone to tab Grinch as the top candidate:

The fact that he has him over Kalani Sitake, who has been a head coach since 2016 for BYU (and a good one at that) is telling. Sitake won 10 or more games in each of the past two seasons and finished inside the Top 19 both years. He currently has the Cougars ranked as the No. 19 team in the nation again.

Simone is not the only analyst that has USC Football Defensive Coordinator Alex Grinch as a candidate for the ASU head coaching job.

Prominent ESPN college football analyst Pete Thamel has USC Football DC Alex Grinch as a name for the Arizona State job. He also has 12 other names, and plenty of them having current or previous head coaching experience (like Sitake), but it's most certainly interesting to keep seeing Thamel mention Grinch as an option for head coaching jobs.

It was not long ago at all when he had Grinch as a name to follow for the Nebraska head coaching position. And who knows? Maybe Sitake doesn't want to leave BYU (understandable and he's an alum), and maybe a more proven option as a head coach in Jonathan Smith won't want to leave Oregon State since he's an OSU alum.

Keep in mind that ASU is being investigated for significant recruiting violations during the 2020 coronavirus dead period. It's a bad job. Many of the current head coaches who are up for the job may want nothing to do with it.

A guy who has never been a head coach in Grinch, however, may see it as a prime opportunity to give himself head coaching experience, and see what he's made of in a complete rebuild with little expectations. And after all, he has made USC's defense much better than what it was last year. They are tied for fourth in the country in turnovers forced (10), and tied for second in the country in sacks (14).

Next. Game-by-game predictions for USC in 2022. dark

Things aren't perfect so far. The Trojans are outside the top 45 in least points per game allowed and outside the top 80 in least yards per game allowed. The pressure and turnovers are there, though, and it's clear that he has USC's defense in a significantly better place than where it was at prior to him getting here. That's turning heads, and may win him a head coaching job sometime.