If It's Friday, It's Time For A USC Notes Column

Scott Wolf

People either loved or hated the video USC released Thursday to show recruits they can enhance their name, image and likeness brands by going to school near Hollywood.

I guess if Clay Helton is the coach, you better be promoting Hollywood instead of becoming an NFL player.

"This video is the dumbest thing I've ever seen,' one former USC player said.

I found the closing credits more fascinating than the video. I didn't notice Mike Bohn in the video but he is listed. So is his eager No. 2, Brandon Sosna. So is the L.A, Times, which had a feature ready to go Thursday on the making of the video. I'm sure Bohn and Sosna had nothing to do with that. Or the special access needed for the story.

A USC student I spoke to Thursday also panned the credits.

"I don't know most of the social media influencers or the luxury driver," the student said. "But they get a credit."

The best thing USC has going for it in the video is the charisma of the players, but not the adult sycophants who try to promote everything as cutting edge.

  • It may be the future but I already heard from some in the athletic dept. on Thursday making it clear the video was done by an outside group and distancing themselves from it.

"They can have the credit," one employee said.

  • This USC fan was not impressed with the cheeseburger Helton cooked:
  • I was under the impression 2019 was the final season for USC band director Art Bartner.

But in a radio interview Monday, Bartner said, "this is not what I planned for my last season," while referring to COVID-19 restrictions.

A USC article last year said Bartner was directing his final home game and then added, "Bartner will then return for the 2020 football season in a reduced role in order to ensure an orderly transition to the new director. Bartner will officially retire on Jan. 1, 2021."

But . . . there's been no new director to "transition" to. 

Maybe it's already been decided associate director Jake Vogel will succeed Bartner but it still seems like Bartner is in charge based on his media appearances.

It's become the longest retirement in USC history. If the USC band does not perform this season, will Bartner return for another season?

"If the new director isn't Jake, I don't know how much a new guy will want Bartner hanging around while he's trying to establish himself," a USC source said.

  • Dave Hirsch, who worked at the Pac-12 office for 25 years, reached a separation agreement this week with the conference. He was vice president of communications and had been furloughed.

He was part of the pre-Larry Scott staff that usually had to cover for the mistakes or bad publicity of Scott or his allies.

  • And now for some history: 

What building is this? It's Heritage Hall. Or at least a 1955 rendering of Heritage Hall, which had a projected cost of $375,000 and a tower that was to be the highest point on campus.

Heritage Hall was not built until 1970 and turned out be much different and with no tower.

  • Do you remember former USC pitcher Barry Latman? He was on the USC freshman team in 1955 when he signed with the Chicago White Sox.

He became a two-time All- Star in 1961-62 and was in the major leagues from 1957-67, including the Angels.

Latman was one of three Fairfax High School players in th 1959 World Series. Latman was with the Chicago White Sox while the Dodgers featured Larry Sherry and Chuck Essegian. A fourth Fairfax player -- Norm Sherry -- was called up by the Dodgers in 1959 but was not on the World Series roster.

In 1961, Latman married Lynne Schwab, the daughter of Leon Schwab, owner of the Schwab drugstore chain, including the famous location in Hollywood where Lana Turner was not discovered.

Comments (4)
No. 1-3

The first positive of not being allowed to see SC live - I don't have to sit through K-TEL's classic rock hits of the 70's via Bartner.

Rialto Trojan
Rialto Trojan

So I watched the video to see what all the hoopla is about. That is three minutes of my life I will not get back. The idea, as I have been told, was to launch a new media partnership intended to help players “brand” themselves. When I saw the headline in the papers this morning I was thinking hot pokers and burning skin. It’s all the rage. No more tattoos. I had no idea that players needed an identity at a school football team that prides themselves on not being about the individual.
So watching the video finally made sense when I saw Clay flipping burgers. He’s auditioning for the job he wants after being fired for impersonating a college coach.
Just put the names on the jersey and dump the media company