In the past decade, Southern California has made the adage “any publicity is good publicity” part of their company policy. Trojans athletic director Pat Haden met with UTEP head coach, and former USC head coach, Tim Floyd.
Floyd resigned as USC’s coach in June 2009, after both the football and basketball programs were being investigated by the NCAA for improper benefits to players. The main allegations surrounded No. 3 draft pick O.J. Mayo, who left USC after one season to play in the NBA. The NCAA was unable to find any evidence of improper conduct by Floyd, but the university did receive penalties for actions towards Mayo.
The Trojans were unable to participate in postseason play during the 2010 season. In his coaching span with USC, Floyd took the Trojans to a school record three consecutive NCAA tournaments. Floyd would be a strong candidate to fill the USC head coaching job, and the position is obviously a huge step up from coaching UTEP.
Floyd told the Los Angeles Times that he, and Haden, still have a good professional relationship, and talked at length regarding the coaching vacancy. He claims that he left USC in order to clear his name, not admit guilt.
Haden and Floyd talked at length for a reported three hours the day before Floyd would lead UTEP to face No. 25 Memphis. Floyd has always been a very transparent person, and wasn’t going to keep his meeting with Haden a secret. However, his commitment to UTEP is all but gone now when speaking with other athletic directors in the first week of March.