A few weeks ago I suggested 3 options for the new USC President, when responding to Trogan sanctions:
He has selected Door # 1.5, appearing to take the high road (#1), implying the low road (#2), and finally breaking the predicted silence (#3). This is shown in his letter to "Members of the Trojan Family," excerpts of which are provided below, with translation.
"After assuming the presidency... I will announce... academic and administrative operations."
But football sanctions are so much more important than that stuff that I am sending my very first message to all of you about, well, football.
"Since USC's earliest days, the student-athlete <sic> experience has served as the glue that binds our... family."
Not academics, not research, not contributions to larger society, but football. We know you alums will only empty your wallets for pigskin, not the scholarly junk.
"We are determined to strengthen the athletic heritage."
The Heritage Hall heritage, including improper admits, unauthorized eligibility assists, and criminal defense services.
"USC... will look to excel in the coming years in a manner that is consistent with the highest values of the academy."
What academy? Not Plato's. The Police Academy.
"I thank Mr. Garrett..."
who I will praise several more times in this short letter. I have to thank him, or he might sue the school, which of course our donors can handle, or he might tell all to the NCAA or the non-LA Times media, which we must not allow.
"I am very pleased that Mr. ... Haden has accepted my offer."
We're trying to stop the bleeding, but of course we wouldn't think of hiring someone who attended a squeaky-clean, academic alma mater.
"... his prominent role.. during one of USC's golden eras of athletic achievement..."
When McKay's avoid-the-Admissions-Office and Goux"s e-Bay operation produced our last big punishment for blatant rulebreaking.
"Mr. Haden will receive a joint faculty appointment... He will design new curricula in... sports business <something we don't have any expertise in?> and sports journalism (aka PlaSChke flattering>..."
He can give his student-athletes easy A's and set up internships with sports marketeers just like Carroll did.
"... Roberts... as vice president for athletic compliance. ... I believe this is the first position of its kind in the nation..."
He is an experienced litigator, who can help us with all the legal and administrative appeals we expect in the future -- it's cheaper than paying him by the hour -- but of course the first position of its kind was filled by John Dean.
"... Ferris... to associate vice president for athletic compliance."
Another lawyer, and we are promoting her because of the superb job she did keeping us on the straight and narrow the past few years.
... the USC athletic compliance office will be one of the preeminent compliance teams in the nation."
Say it with me, "attorney-client privilege".
"... will continue to monitor closely the academic performance and coursework of every student athlete, as well as admissions policies..."
Continue just like we are, e.g., credits from Senora Ross and for ballroom dancing; study halls producing offspring instead of improved test scores; admitting anyone who can block, tackle, or run, so long as not currently incarcerated.
"Professor... Pastore... as USC's faculty athletic representative..."
From our own law school; we can't have enough attorneys looking for loopholes.
"... retained the services of The Freeh Group..."
They are anything but Free, but they give us cover, and we'll sure need it.
"... to include a thorough assessment of the student-athlete <primitive> culture at USC."
Will document that we own the police; that we disrespect women; that we thrive on having movie stars, sports marketeers, runners, and even a double-killer as part of our Family.
"This will also include recommendations related to ensuring compliance... with respect to high-profile student athletes."
These are, of course, very narrowly construed; for example, Pete Carroll has demonstrated that Reggie Bush was not such a one.
"The Trojan Family honors and respects the USC sporting careers <certainly not academic ones> of those persons whose actions did not compromise their athletic program..."
Although we have to send back Reggie's Heisman, and get rid of OJ2 stuff which is basketball so we don't much care about it, we continue to respect OJ, John McKay, Marv Goux, Joe McKnight, Rey Rey, Pete Carroll -- you should buy his book -- etc. etc.
"Our Trojan student-athletes are indeed students first and foremost..."
I had to send this out by memo, as I could never never never say this with a straight face with the cameras on me. Roski told me I had to put this in.
"... the USC experience must ensure that they are nourished by and beholden to the noblest values of the academy and of society."
To be implemented by the premiere examples, Lane Kiffin and Ed Orgeron.
"And USC's athletic program.. will continue to serve as the force binding this worldwide Trojan Family."
The dark side of the force, naturally, and of course only athletics can bind our bunch; we really don't have much else that matters to the big spenders.