Former Oregon Cornerbacks Coach Donte Williams has been named the interim head coach at USC following the school announcing that it had parted ways with Head Coach Clay Helton Monday.
"I'm confident that as our interim head coach Donte Williams gives us a higher probability for success the remainder of the season," AD Mike Bohn said in a statement. "Donte is an experienced and well-respected coach who is renowned for his ability to develop relationships with student athletes and I appreciate his willingness to take on this challenge."
Williams joined Helton's staff in Los Angeles in 2020 after spending two seasons on the Oregon staff, where he recruited and developed players like Mykael Wright and DJ James. In December 2020, Williams was named associate head coach.
Prior to his time in Eugene, Williams spent time on the staffs at Nebraska, Arizona and San Jose State. He played a major role in turning around Oregon's defense and put the Ducks back on the radar for many top-level defensive backs during his time in Eugene.
A native of Los Angeles County playing his high school football at Culver City, Williams will be able to tap into his local roots with the hope of helping the Trojans regain their hold on the top talent in Southern California as the Ducks have made a routine of swiping top prospects from under their nose since Mario Cristobal was named head coach. We've already begun to see this with the likes of Korey Foreman and Ceyair Wright signing with the Trojans in 2021.
At USC, Williams has worked with players like Olaijah Griffin and Chris Steele.
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Griffin, who was named the Pac-12's No. 3 cornerback according to Pro Football Focus, signed with the Buffalo Bills as an undrafted free agent prior to the 2021 season, and Steele was named to the All Pac-12 second team. Williams has proven to be one of the best defensive back coaches, and it will be interesting to not only see what he can do as the leader of the program, but also whether or not the school's administration decides to hang onto him long term.
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