Former defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin has taken his talents to the Dallas Cowboys, so according to CBS Sports, USC has decided to move forward by hiring Clancy Pendergast as his replacement.
Joe Schad of ESPN also reported the news on his Twitter account:
USC has hired Clancy Pendergast as defensive coordinator according to a source— Joe Schad (@schadjoe) January 17, 2013
Pendergast doesn't have to travel far to his new home. He has been the California Golden Bears' defensive coordinator since 2010. Before that, he held several defensive jobs with various NFL teams and was a graduate assistant at USC back in 1992. Most notably, Pendergast was the defensive coordinator for the Arizona Cardinals when they reached the Super Bowl back in 2008.
USC struggled on both sides of the ball last season, but it was the defense that drove many folks nuts. As a unit, it allowed 394 total yards per game, which was good for seventh in the Pac-12. A total of six teams managed to top 400 total yards on the Trojans, and the straw that broke the camel’s back was Oregon, which dropped 730 yards and 62 points.
This happened under Kiffin's watch, which probably had something to do with his decision to go back to a more familiar league.
Was Clancy Pendergast the right hire?
Pendergast spent three seasons with Cal and helped the Golden Bears lead the Pac-12 in total defense his first two seasons. Last season, things got ugly—as the ranking slipped to No. 10—but much like USC, almost nothing went right for Cal.
One thing that Trojan fans can be excited about is that Pendergast has given the Oregon Ducks fits in the past with his 3-4 scheme. In 2010—although Cal lost—his defense held the Ducks to only 15 points and 317 total yards. In 2011, he held the Ducks to 43 points and less than 200 passing yards. At this point, USC will take what it can get.
Pendergast may not have the sexy name or the high profile reputation, but he has gotten the job done nearly everywhere he has gone throughout his career. USC fans everywhere are just hoping his success can continue at his next stop.