The Fall Of Troy


Down and distance is presented by sentas. Get santos and get ready for the workday. Hey it's kevin a gun in the host of the college football podcast with herbie and pollock to our listeners. I want to share with you. The very latest episode of ivan maizels down in distance podcast hope you enjoy it when texas quarterback vince young scored a touchdown with nineteen seconds seconds to play in the two thousand six rose bowl the longhorns won not only the b._c._s. championship but one of the best games of the modern era the late great keith jackson's call remains one of my favorite college football ear worms. He's gone for the corner. The the longhorns forty one to thirty eight upsets of the two time defending defending national champion the media darling the football dynasties the team that didn't know how to lose the u._s._c. trojans in the hype leading up to that game u._s._c. arrived in pasadena on a month long crescendo would victory certified the trojans as the goat the greatest of all time no team at one three consecutive national championship since the associated press poll began in nineteen thirty six a victory would be u._s.'s thirty fifth in a row which would put the trojans one season away from challenging oklahoma's record unbeaten run of forty forty seven games. It was all right there within the grasp of u._s._c. The trojans failed to grasp it. Thanks to young he threw roof for two hundred sixty seven yards and ran for two hundred young brought texas back from a twelve point deficit in the final four minutes you you didn't need history to tell you the greatness of that performance. We knew at that night what we didn't understand on that night. Wednesday january fourth two thousand six is how that game served as the beginning of the end of the u._s._c. dynasty for three years years afterward. The trojans remained favorites to win. It all continued to contend to win. It all seem destined to win at all and yet three three times u._s._c. fell. Just short of winning at all then is if it happened overnight u._s.'s stopped being u._s._c. in two thousand nine. The trojans lost four games head. Coach pete carroll left for the n._f._l. Early in in two thousand ten weeks before the n._c._a._a. slammed u._s._c. with a penalty so harsh that it removed any question about whether the good times at ended and to this day the trojans have never been as close to winning a national championship is on that january night thirteen years ago when vince young young broke every cardinal and gold heart the end of a dynasty has seen more easily from the rear view mirror than it is in real time welcome to down and distance a podcast about the history of college football part of e._s._p._n.'s college football one fifty commemorating commemorating the one hundred fiftieth anniversary of the sport. I'm your host ivan mays l. Today's episode is the fall of troy in it. We we will explore how u._s._c. slipped from the edge of immortality back into the college football mainstream every college football season it takes a lot of effort to get each team properly equipped and ready to hit the field the old inefficient playing machine same for your business for more than ninety years cintas has worked to help businesses big and small look more professional and run more smoothly and efficiently great players should focus their energy on the important things the scouting report the fine details that will help separate them from the competition addition santosh will handle all the fine details allowing the team your business the focus on what's most important santosh has the products services to help your employees stay safe from first aid training and compliance courses cintas is proud fortune five hundred company with more than forty three two thousand employees operating over five hundred locations across the united states and canada more than one million businesses trust sentas to help them open their doors just with confidence get senna's. Get ready for the workday. Learn how cintas can help get your business ready. It's centas dot com in the last ten seasons. U._s._c. is one one pac twelve conference championship three a fewer than oregon in two fewer than stanford. The trojans rebounded from one of the sternest penalties that the n._c._a._a. Ever meet it out losing forty percent percent of their scholarships for three consecutive seasons. U._s._c. rose from that penalty to win the conference in two thousand seventeen and his fallen again at this juncture. U._s._c. is just another team a long way from the dominance. The trojans exhibited in the two thousands but i don't want to tell you the story of how the trojans got where they are today. I want to unpack how they got from. Being nineteen seconds short of three straight national championships in two thousand and five being just barely not good enough in two thousand six two thousand seven two thousand eight the having the dynasty collapsed lapse in two thousand nine in the scope of one hundred fifty years of college football u._s._c. success under pete carroll feels like last week nevertheless feel like i should sketch out just what made you seem so historic in nature can roll out the stats and there's no no question they're impressing the seven straight pac ten titles five straight years in the top ten the sixteen first round draft choices who played for carol oh yeah and the back to back national championships but the numbers are just numbers. They don't convey what the u._s.'s dominance felt like at once intimidating in irresistible football teams can be intimidated not just to opponents to the public not u._s._c. carol and the trojans turned greatness into entertainment. They were enjoyable to watch undercover. The music stars showed up at practice on the game sideline. All part of the show will farrell snoop dogg. Bill withers not to mention that the trojan roster appeared to be deeper than deep talent seemed inexhaustible carol signed pretty much mature wanted fine man eighteen year old who could resist all those trappings of stardom but a funny thing happened on the way to perpetual greatness in the three seasons after the vince young game and no disrespect to the other texas longhorns who own national championship rings but who do you think of when you think of that game in two thousand six two thousand seven and two thousand eight u._s._c. played well enough to extend its streak of pac ten championships up to seven in each of those seasons. The trojans finished third or fourth in the final a._p. Poll but in each of those seasons the trojan agents slip just enough to fall short of qualifying for the championship format which consisted of two teams only let us all pause in memory of the late not so great b._c._s. the difference between the trojans who won championships and the trojans who didn't is small and difficult to define fine but there are clues to examine especially in light of what happened to u._s._c. in two thousand nine when the trojans fell to a nine and four record that it included two defeats by at least four touchdowns season by season the cracks in the foundation of u._s._c. grew bigger and wider both on the sideline and on the field the trojans began to slip in two thousand six the year after the fateful loss of longhorns. Let's look at the coaches. A head coach is only as good as the assistants who carry out his vision. There is a pattern among among successful coaches. They find the right assistant and they keep them bobby. Bowden did that at florida state. Tom osborne at nebraska. Sweeny is doing it at clemson. They have to replace a coach every couple of years sure but find a winning coach in odds are you'll find a staff of guys working for him who mesh well and aren't going anywhere the staff that pete carroll assembled at u._s._c. nearly twenty years ago included a good admixed veterans and young bright coaches norm chow who coached alongside lavelle edwards for two decades at b._y._u. As been as good good a quarterback whisperer as there isn't a game joining chow on the offensive staff were a pair of twenty-something offense of assistance close friends whose offensive offensive savvy was matched only by their confidence. Their names were lane kiffin and steve sarkisian. You may recognize those names as the first two guys to succeed carol at u._s._c. You may recognize them as young head coaches who didn't handle the spotlight and pressure of the big stage. We're not there air yet. Nearly two thousand hip and sark not only had a grasp of offense unusual for their age but a youthful affability which which recruits could easily relate those guys could bring in the talent u._s._c. national championship teams of three thousand three in two thousand four work with chow kiffin and sarkisian at the helm of the offense at unmatched firepower after the second national championship happening chip both kiffin and sarkisian had chances to leave to advance their careers pete. Carroll didn't want to let them go so carol. All tried to thread the needle. You took away play calling duties from chow gave them to kiffin in sarkisian in gamble that he could keep all three. It was a gamble all right and carol lost chow in a matter of days left to become an n._f._l. Assistant in two thousand five giffen sarkisian ran the u._s._c. offense with the talent on that offense liner bush white it cetera era etc. I'm reasonably certain i could have been the offensive coordinator but you know what giffen sark did a great job the trojan and scored more than fifty points in seven games and never scored fewer than thirty four but you can also make the case that maybe just i maybe would have been able to make the difference in a last second. Rose bowl lost the texas. The obvious question is the play that opened the door for the longhorns warns the fourth and to the texas forty five with two nineteen to play make the first down in the trojans could run out the clock and win the game reggie bush the heisman trophy winner remained on the sideline glendale white carried the ball and came up less than a yard short twice voice tonight s._e._c. gone for dot fourth and one and twice. They've come up short sexist. The thirteen years news trojan fans have asked where was reggie author. Steve dawson wrote an oral history of carol years. He quoted chow is saying doing that. Obviously chows word. Both bags should have been in the game just to make texas account for both of them. Kiffin and sark ran the offense again in two thousand six an offense that didn't have liner bush or white liners and bush went in the first picks of the n._f._l. Draft and white went in the middle of the second round yet. The trojans continued to dominate quarterback. John david booty proved to be capable replacement for liner especially given the burden placed on him the u._s._c. running game took a step back without bush and white now. There's some penetrating analysis. Still the trojans found something that worked over the last month of the season. A midseason loss at oregon state by two points proved to be the shallowest of potholes coming down the stretch. The trojans beat four opponents. It's three of them ranked by an average of twenty five points per game. Only one game stood between u._s._c. and a chance for dench in for the texas laws on december second u._s._c. took a ten one record and a number two ranking into its regular season finale at crosstown archrival travel u._c._l._a. Victory would propel u._s._c. into the b._c._s. championship game against number one ohio state. No one outside sad the u._c._l._a. Locker room thought the bruins had a chance u._s._c. had beaten. U._c._l._a.'s seven straight years in the previous season that two thousand five trojan team gilded. It's mythic greatness by humiliating bruins sixty six to nineteen. The trojans gained six hundred seventy nine yards yards in one game. Yeah the trojans had lost texas on that rose bowl field eleven months earlier prior to that the trojans hadn't lost in in pasadena since one thousand nine hundred ninety eight not to mention that u._c._l._a. At six and five scared exactly no one the bruins once had a fourth year head coach karl durell with a career record of twenty eight and twenty this u._c._l._a. Team struggled to score points. The defense defense laidback coordinator dwayne walker johnson spark in the month of november walker decided to take away what the trojans did the best. You would never let booty u._s._c. quarterback. Get comfortable walker said after the game. It wasn't me against pete carroll darrelle me against lane. Kiffin was me against booty on that saturday in this rivalry walker and his bruins produce the game of their lives. The defensive front constantly attacked never letting booty said its feet feet completed. Only one deep pass the running game never solve the bruins scheme either u._s._c. clung to a nine seven lead at the half but no one in the trojan locker room panic coaches felt as if they're players just had to relax play the way they had played all season they we just needed to be patient that soon things would click. Let's specifically has been given from. They've had some chances to work on some stuff yeah. That's not that big a deal. We've got actually a little bit better. We went on a third-down another. Yes on this particular saturday afternoon. There would be no clicking. Carol remained aggressive self which usually worked fine but twice against u._c._l._a. Carol turn down. Phil gould attempt in order to go for it on fourth short both times. The bruins turned back the trojans the end of the game with u._c._l._a. l._a. Ahead thirteen to nine u._s._c. began to drive for a game winning season. Saving touchdown trojans methodically drove to the bruins owns eighteen yard line less than a minute remained in the game. Budi took the snap and look to pass a backup linebacker eric mcneal. He'll drifted into no man's land. Just behind the defensive end. You wasn't supposed to be there. Pootie threw a pass to his left mcneil neil where he shouldn't have been the ball straight up then caught it does he fell to the turf the video the u._s.'s first turnover of the game may cost them. The national championship was stunning. I counted among the top upsets. I've covered. No one was more stunned than the visiting trojans prevailing sentiment in the u._s. Locker room was one. What just happened happened. In two added the clock run out when an inexplicable loss happens who typical coach throws up his hands and provides their favourite non explanation of an explanation. It was just one of those games in the previous two seasons u._s._a. Hadn't had one of those games in two thousand six. They had had one already when they lost that argon st in now with everything anything at stake they had another trojans did not go to the fiesta bowl to play ohio state the b._c._s. title they returned to the rose bowl hole where they humbled michigan finished eleven and to finish fourth in the final poll <music> building a winning team is all about finding the right people for the job. That's why college coaches is all over. The country spent so much time recruiting players they need on the field and when it comes to hiring for your business there's no better tool than linked in link. Dan provides a vast vast array of recommended job candidates all in one organized place over six hundred million members visit linked in to make connections learn and grow as professionals nationals and discover new job opportunities. That's how i make sure your job post gets in front of people with the right hard skills and soft skills to meet your row requirements. Things things like collaboration work ethic adaptability link. Dan does the legwork to match you to the most qualified candidates so you can focus on hiring the person who will transform transform your business to get fifty dollars off your first job. Post go to lincoln dot com slash c. f. b. That's linked and dot com slash c._f._p. F._b._i. To get fifty dollars off your first job post terms and conditions apply in two thousand seven an untimely injury exposed the trojans lack of depth both on the sideline and on the field that year lane kiffin and left to become head coach of the oakland raiders steve sarkisian took over control of a offense. You again lost two games. There was a year to lose two in two thousand seven. Was it national champion l._s._u. Tigers lost two games one of them on thanksgiving weekend but the trojans lost two games in october thanks to an injury to boot and their title hopes never recovered frankly they never recovered covered from the first loss nor should they have stanford had gone. One in eleven in two thousand six stanford has been so bad that after that season the university administration discussed dropping out of f._b._i. Football but they decided to give the big time another chance airing a brash former n._f._l. Quarterback who had won big and non scholarship football at the university of san diego his name was jim harbaugh in the fifth game of the season stanford came south the play number two u._s._c. vegas favored. The trojans is by forty. One points u._s._c. dominated the first half of the game yet lead only nine did nothing at intermission stanford kept hanging around it could be because in the first quarter who'd he completed his throwing motion and smashed his hand into a defender's helmet breaking a bone buddhi came out of the locker room for the second half the u._s._c. coaches kept a close eye on watched him warm up they they wanted to determine whether he could throw the ball with a broken bone in his right hand budi through ten yard pass ball came out of his hand just fine. You said he could play off. He went early in the third quarter on third and two who'd he tried to muscle a pass into the right flat. That was a pass longer than ten yards. The ball didn't respond. Moody's hand didn't respond the ball fluttered into the flat stanford's. Austin yancey snatched it and sprinted thirty one yards for cardinal touchdown. Suddenly stanford trailed only nine two seven yet buddhi stayed in the game and u._s._c. kept throwing thirty four interceptions in that second half the cardinal came back and won twenty four twenty three with a fourth down touchdown pass with forty eight seconds to play remember stanford was a forty one point underdog. That was the biggest college football upset as measured by point spreads since vegas opened its doors as with u._c._l._a. The year before u._s._c. suffered inconceivable lost blame over-confidence claim of freak injury and blame and coaches who didn't react properly to the injury broken bone that wasn't serious enough to pull booty out of the stanford game proof serious enough. That booty missed the next three three games sophomore. Mark sanchez started in his place at number five oregon sanchez found out how difficult it is to play a ranked team on the road in front of raucous fans sanchez through two second-half interceptions that spelled the difference in twenty four to seventeen laws buddhi returned. The defense still played well. The trojans won their last five games and they finished third in the final poll an outstanding ending season in in a year when national champion l._s._u. Also lost two games another missed opportunity in two one thousand eight. The trojans lost only one game again. At oregon state. Two teams with tougher schedules oklahoma and florida also lost only one game the sooners and the gators played for the national title trojans played in the rose bowl for the fourth consecutive season eight years past for the trojans played and another rose bowl. You know who works hard rookies sure make mistakes but no one's got more to prove knowing each day's another opportunity to outworked them all earned the respect they deserve. That's why after one one hundred thirty years carl hart still approaches each day with the passion and work ethic of a company that's one hundred thirty years young same hunger same determination same giant chip on the shoulder and in the same way a rookie needs to work hard earned the respect of their peers. Everything carl hart makes has to keep earning the respective active the hardworking people who wear it. That's why car heart still works like a rookie. Why carl hart will keep working them all for the next one hundred thirty years to visit car heart dot com forward slash c._f._p. To learn more and shop this season's hardest working gear then came two thousand nine year when what pete carroll had built truly began to fall apart the trojan suffered too critical critical defections after the two thousand eight season steve sarkisian left to become head coach at the university of washington more important quarterback mark sanchez a third year sophomore defied carols wishes and his advice in declared himself eligible for the n._f._l. Draft carol replace sarkisian with jeremy bates a young n._f._l. Assistant put it this way. That was the only season bates ever coached college football in the nine years since two thousand nine bates spent four years in the n._f._l. In five years out of coaching but back to two thousand nine bates ran the offense and sanchez who would have been a favorite to win. The heisman trophy left for the n._f._l. And a high end him trojans had to veterans with little experience in a freshman who had left high school early who didn't turn eighteen until the third week of the season a good-looking blind kid with a big smile named matt barkley carol through his chips down on barkley barkley. Arkley performed a bound as well as a freshman could perform. Which is the say. What is a program like u._s._c. doing with its best quarterback being an eighteen year. Oh freshman carol got steamrolled by the changing times. Not two decades earlier successful successful coaches created quarterbacks by assembly line. You red shirted your watch from the sideline for two years and you played for two years. Bobby bobby bowden down at florida state had that system down to a science but players who sniff the possibility of leaving early for the n._f._l. Didn't wanna learn from the sideline. They wanted to play carol appealed to that instinct by promising freshman he would give them a chance but that same ploy came back to bite him at the the other end of the player's career sanchez left a year too soon and the two quarterbacks behind him airing corp and mitch mustang simply didn't pan pan out one of the biggest differences between college football in the n._f._l. Is that n._f._l. Coaches can cut their mistakes. If a player doesn't perform sometimes even after a bad practice he's gone in college. Football coach must live with his recruiting mistakes as i said a few minutes ago carol could sign virtually whomever he desired but did he want the right guys. If you follow recruiting rankings you know that they can be self fulfilling prophecies at is the top team is recruiting a player therefore he is a top prospect. I don't know a lot about transit of properties and i do know the great recruits always make great players in two thousand seven u._s._c. signed ten five star recruits the best of the best and five four stars two of them became all conference in two thousand eight u._s._c. sign twenty players. Five of them became all conference nine of them. Never started a game for the trojan. The marquee recruited the two thousand nine class barkley. Never made all conference either of course barkley played in the league at the same time as andrew luck so that's not exactly a knock on barclay actually the trojans biggest problems that season came on defense defense oregon in its first season under head coach chip kelly and his up tempo spread offense beat u._s._c. forty seven to twenty two weeks later stanford in its third season under harbaugh in its first season with luck at quarterback road graded the u._s._c. defense cardinal one fifty five to twenty one mostly by running the ball down the trojans throat are by refused to take his foot off the gas in the a fourth quarter he wanted fifty points and he got it at is known as the what's your deal game. The question that an angry carroll asked harbaugh during during their quick cursory postgame handshake that was the game that announced to the public that the dynasty ended the months after the two thousand nine season sealed the fate of u._s. Dynasty carol left for the seattle seahawks a few weeks ahead of the devastating saving n._c._a._a. Penalties giffen return to u._s._c. after one year at tennessee to replace his mentor forever after making tiffin's name and epithets the tennessee campus hamstrung by the scholarship restrictions hip and couldn't have maintain the trojans elite status even if he hadn't been and a young coach phoned immature mistakes u._s._c. athletic director pat haden famously fired kiffin in the middle of the night at the airport after a loss at arizona mistake sarkisian returned from washington to replace kiffin hayden fired him after one and a half disappointing seasons in which are keys zan had issues with alcohol that embarrassed the university we are ten years removed from pete carroll's last season at u._s._c. for nearly nearly five years from november of two thousand two until october of two thousand seven u._s._c. never fell out of the top ten but even then in the decay had begun to take root in the trojan athletic program. We didn't see it at the time with from here. Fifteen years removed ooh from u._s.'s last national championship. That decay is crystal-clear down distance. I'm ivan mozelle down in distances part of e._s._p._n.'s college football one fifty fifty commemorating the one hundred fiftieth anniversary of the sport. If you like this episode please subscribe on itunes or wherever you get your podcast down in distance is produced by nina earnest with help from scott's sabers brian intel and jodi began. Our engineer is josh macrey special. Thanks to alexander cooper engaged by saying the executive producer of e._s._p._n. College football one fifty is john doll. I'm aubin mozelle on our next episode. I'll tell you the story of how the greatest dynasty in the history of college football came apart one night in chicago nightclub culprit fruit salad sooner sabotage on the next down and distance.

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