According to the LA Daily News, after two years, Pete Carroll has finally listened to an NFL offer—and accepted.
Carroll has apparently agreed to a five-year, $35-million contract, in which he would assume the head coaching and personnel duties in the front office alongside Tod Leiweke.
After the announcement of Joe McKnight, Damian Williams, and company's early departure with intent to enter the 2010 NFL Draft, Carroll may have realized that getting back into the pros would be the safest option at this point.
Coming off a 9-4 year, the Trojans fell well short of expectations this year and lose some vital pieces to a team that failed to reach a major bowl game.
Now that Carroll is gone, college head coaches around the country will be boarding planes, buses, and anything possible in order to reach recruit's living rooms. Or perhaps, coaches will line up outside the Alamodome in San Antonio in order to speak with current Trojans commits who are opening eyes not only all over Texas, but the entire nation.
With the top two receivers, Robert Woods and Kyle Prater, committed to Southern Cal, coaches will be drooling over this opportunity on the West coast.
One coach in particular, Brian Kelly, may have gotten an early birthday present. Kelly, who is currently in California recruiting, is looking to land his first big-name talent after inheriting his current recruiting class and prospects. Carroll's absence would give USC's rivals great momentum on that front.
While just leaving the living room of Prater's best friend Corey Cooper a few days ago, you know Kelly will be wanting to leave a message on Prater's voicemail to at least consider. Prater and Cooper, both from Illinois, were rumored to want to play and room together in college before Prater committed to Pete Carroll's ex-program.
In additon, top recruit Seantrel Henderson, who also lists the Irish and Ohio State as his leaders, was also strongly considering the Trojans. However, with only 25 days until National Signing Day, one would have to think that this might even eliminate USC from contention in getting Henderson's signature.
Already contacted within hours of Carroll's rumors, top USC verbal commitments Prater, Woods, Dillon Baxter, and D.J. Morgan have all said they will reconsider if Carroll does in fact leave for Seattle.
In addition to the rumor of Carroll leaving, recruits will also be uneasy about the potential NCAA sanctions against the program. Not to mention, these same sanctions may be a reason for concern for Mike Riley, Jeff Fisher, and Jim Harbaugh, who were all considered replacements for the expected vacancy.
Many will question why the Trojan coach would leave his comfortable position near the top of college football in order to take a job with the Seahawks. In case you haven't watched been able to catch a glimpse at the NFL this year, Seattle is no longer the Shaun Alexander-led, playoff-bound franchise any longer.
Since their last playoff apperance in 2007, they have gone a whopping 9-23 and until today, was without a head coach, president, or general manager.
However, one thing can be said about the recent news: Carroll's absence in college football will make a major difference. If not on the field, it will be felt on the recruiting trail.
Now it is time to see if Carroll was the reason for the rise of Troy, or if the program itself was the reason for success.
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