It's no secret that the 2021 season hasn't been the best for USC football.
The athletic department fired former head coach Clay Helton after two games this season, and the Trojans currently hold a 3-3 overall record, unranked in the AP Top 25.
Even after making it to the Pac-12 championship last year, fans still called for the firing of Clay Helton, dissatisfied with the trajectory and current state of the program. Perhaps those high expectations were due to the 'glory days', established by none other than Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll.
Carroll was hired by USC to serve as head coach in 2001, and by the end of his tenure, he turned the Trojans into a nationally recognized and well respected brand.
The NFL head coach reflected on the current state of USC's football program in a recent interview with the Los Angeles Times; acknowledging that the 'expectations' he created are part of the current problem.
"The expectations are part of the problem, but the expectations are also the key essence of the whole thing, because if you can meet those expectations you can do it," Carroll told Sam Farmer of the Los Angeles Times.
"What we stumbled into when we went there was a giant of a job. It was a huge opportunity and a huge setting for college football. It had been, then it wasn’t, then we hit it running and got in a great rhythm of recruiting, coaching, playing and all that, and had a great run. It’s an incredible place, so much potential.
Unfortunately for the people who have followed, we made it really difficult on them. We won every game for three years in a row or whatever it was. The expectations were difficult. In one regard I feel bad for the guys who followed because it’s been so hard to match up. But it’s a marvelous place with great potential, a great setting, a great university in a great spot."
After losing their most recent contest to the Utah Utes, the possibility of achieving another Pac-12 championship run is slim to none. Now, USC re-focuses their energy to becoming bowl eligible and going 1-0 every week.