USC Trojans Football: The State of the Program After 2013 Season

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USC Trojans Football: The State of the Program After 2013 Season
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Pending USC's 2013 bowl game, the season is now over for the men of Troy.

A 9-4 regular-season ledger found the Trojans enmeshed in one of the most emotionally difficult years the program has ever faced, and overall, they came through it about as well as one could expect.

After losing their head coach—Lane Kiffin—five games into the season, interim coach Ed Orgeron led the Trojans to a 6-2 record the rest of the way and did everything that was asked of him except for beating USC's two main rivals, UCLA and Notre Dame.

Sadly for Orgeron, those two losses probably cost him an opportunity to get the permanent gig, and now offensive coordinator Clay Helton will be USC's third coach of 2013 as he leads the Trojans in their bowl game.

Given the turmoil the Cardinal and Gold experienced this year, one could make a compelling argument that the season was a qualified success.

Now the Trojans turn to their new permanent head coach, Steve Sarkisian, and while the choice of "Sark" may not be popular with all who follow the program, it does mark a new era for USC, one that will begin with the 2014 season.

This slideshow will take a peek at what lies ahead for USC next year, beginning with answering some very important questions leading into Coach Sark's first year at the helm.

Will the Trojans be national-title contenders next year?

Here are some factors that may lead to the answer of that question.

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