1. Tom Herman – Houston head coach
If USC wants to get out of this coaching quagmire, the Trojans will need to reach out to the best coaching talent in the college game to try to find their new guy. The best Group of 5 coach in the country is Houston Cougars head coach Tom Herman. Unless Houston moves to the Big 12, Herman is sure to be coaching elsewhere in 2017.
Herman has lost one game in his year-plus leading the Cougars. He was the former offensive coordinator under Meyer at Ohio State. Herman is an elite recruiter, game planner, and offensive mind. He is exactly what USC needs from their next potential head coach.
The problem is that Herman might be overqualified for the USC gig in 2017. USC has done nothing but ruin this job’s perception in the last half decade. If Herman is going to leave Houston, it will be for a job he can see himself coaching for the next decade plus.
Currently, three Power 5 jobs are better fits for Herman than USC: the LSU Tigers of the SEC, the Oklahoma Sooners of the Big 12, and even Baylor in the Big 12. All three of those Power 5 schools can attract elite football talent like USC can without the pious perception associated with the Trojans football program.
To land Herman, Swann will have to make him one of the highest-paid coaches in college football history and guarantee that he will have five years to turn the Trojans into a national power. Swann isn’t Haden, which only helps USC’s case to land Herman.
However, has there been too much self-inflicted damage done by USC to nab Herman as Helton’s replacement? Money talks, but so does stability. USC only has one of those things to lure Herman to Southern California, but that doesn’t mean Swann shouldn’t try.