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A Whole Lot Of Change For The Trojans

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In one swoop this afternoon, the new brass at USC has made some major steps towards rebuilding the image of the fallen Men of Troy. Fresh off the severe sanctions that left both the men's basketball and football programs stuck in handcuffs for the next four years, the school made their first move towards admitting their mistakes and began to build for the future.

The University has a new president, Max Nikias, who officially starts next month, but who's mark can already be felt. First order of duty for the incoming Pres was to insist that the school take down all of the materials honoring the guy most have used as the scapegoat for their problems, Reggie Bush. As part of that process the school will be giving back their version of Bush's Heisman Trophy, as well as removing all of his jerseys, photos and even painting over murals. In addition USC has finally gotten rid of the guy who really oversaw this whole fiasco, former Athletic Director Mike Garret, replacing him with former SC great Pat Haden. In Haden they are hiring a guy who is the polar opposite of Pete Carrol - steeped in SC tradition, Haden was a QB for the school in the glory days of the 1970's before going on to be a Rhodes Scholar, playing in the NFL and running a few different successful businesses.

By all accounts Haden is all business and has no interest in running his programs with the casual, anything goes mentality that got his predecessors in such hot water. While Carrol fled just before the storm and made his way up to Seattle, his apprentice Lane Kiffin is has taken the helm as head football coach. This leaves an interesting dichotomy, with a major sea change at the top in terms of personnel and attitudes, yet the guy running the most high profile part of the athletic department is a mainstay from the previous era and is someone who has built quite a reputation for shady recruiting practices in his short stint in Tennessee and so far at SC.

It will be very interesting to see if Kiffin and USC will be able to both walk the straight and narrow, and compete at the highest levels of college football on a national stage.