USC fires coach Steve Sarkisian


USC announced Monday that it has fired coach Steve Sarkisian one day after he was placed on a leave of absence.

“After careful consideration of what is in the best interest of the university and our student-athletes, I have made the decision to terminate Steve Sarkisian, effective immediately,” athletic director Pat Haden said in a statement Monday. "I want to thank Clay Helton for stepping into the interim head coach role, and I want to add how proud I am of our coaching staff and players and the way they are responding to this difficult situation.  

"Through all of this we remain concerned for Steve and hope that it will give him the opportunity to focus on his personal well being."

Shortly after Sarkisian failed to show up to Sunday's practice, reports began to surface that he showed up to a special teams meeting intoxicated and ultimately left the building.

Haden met with media briefly Sunday and said he called Sarkisian and he wasn't well.

“It was very clear to me that he is not healthy,” Haden said Sunday.

This wasn’t the first time this year Sarkisian had had issues with alcohol. He used inappropriate language at a USC booster function in August and issued an apology saying he had mixed alcohol and medications.

However, Both the Los Angeles Times and L.A. Daily News posted stories and tweets that claim that Sarkisian’s trouble with alcohol has been prevalent since he arrived at USC.

Helton, the Trojans’ offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach, served as the interim coach prior to Sarkisian’s hiring and led the Trojans to a win in the Las Vegas Bowl.

Sarkisian’s tenure as USC’s head coach lasted less than two seasons. He was 12-6 in that span.

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