This seems backwards.
So far this year, Southern Cal has beaten UCLA in football and twice in basketball.
Yet, this morning, the news from Trogendom is that "Ethical Pat" Haden is stepping down from his position as Athletic Director, effective June 30, 2016.
He will remain on board for a year to oversee fundraising for the Coliseum renovation project.
No matter what you think or feel towards the folks across town, if you read the email put out by USC President Max Nikias you can tell that he "gets it." Nikias writes:
In the summer of 2010, Pat stepped away from his longtime role as a trustee of the university in order to take the helm of USC Athletics, which bonds our Trojan Family together across continents and generations.
What?!? Read that again! "USC Athletics...bonds [the] Trojan Family together across continents and generations."
Say what you will about the University of Spoiled Children...the University of Second Choice....the University of Sleazy Cheaters. Their president has an understanding of the role which athletics plays at a major university which is light-years ahead of what UCLA has with Gene Block.
Block remains content to leave a guy in charge of our athletic department because he is a good financial manager.
Block has no understanding of the role that athletics plays to bond the Bruin Nation together across continents and generations.
If he did, he would clean house tomorrow by firing Dan Guerrero and bringing in someone whom can unite the Bruin Nation behind a vision of excellence now and in the years to come.
If he did, he would personally fire Steve Alford not because Alford has lost twice to Southern Cal this season, but because he never should have been hired in the first place.
Nikias had more platitudes for Haden, but this one stuck out:
Pat integrated the athletic department more completely into the life of the larger university than ever before.
Meanwhile, in Westwood, Haden's counterpart Dan Guerrero has isolated the Athletic Department from the Bruins Nation by accepting mediocrity and not promoting a vision of excellence.
Nikias concludes his email by mentioning that he will be working with Nick Brill from the Brill Neuman executive search firm to find a new athletic director and asks readers to forward the nominations for the position to USCAthleticDirector@brillneuman.com.
Is it too much to hope that Nikias and Brill recruit a guy from the Westside who is an "excellent financial manager"?