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Malachi Nelson was so hungry for playing time that he trusted a rookie head coach

The Boise State Broncos struggled last season. They struggled so much, in fact, that they fired head coach Andy Avalos well before the end of the season. They promoted Spencer Danielson to the interim head coaching position. Players loved playing for Danielson. They proved it by storming to the Mountain West Championship Game and then winning that game over UNLV. The response to Danielson from the Boise State roster was so roundly and uniformly positive that Boise State made Danielson the permanent head coach, a wise decision. Danielson certainly earned his chance to lead the Broncos into 2024.

The fact that Danielson won over his players and got the best out of them in a handful of games is, in itself, impressive. However, it’s very different from leading a team from start to finish over the course of a full season.

USC has had experiences with interim coaches who do well and then make a bid for the permanent head coaching job. Clay Helton is an interim who successfully got the permanent job in 2015. Ed Orgeron wanted the permanent job a few years earlier after a strong interim stint, but USC went with Steve Sarkisian instead.

We can all agree: Spencer Danielson might be a really good head coach, but he has to prove it first.

This could have been a deterrent to Malachi Nelson when he considered where he would play in 2024. Clearly, Danielson’s unproven identity as a college head coach did not dissuade the USC transfer. Nelson and Danielson are linked to each other. Their uncertain futures will depend on the other’s success. It will be fascinating to see how this partnership unfolds in Idaho.

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Story originally appeared on Trojans Wire