Few people were more excited about USC's decision to make Clay Helton the permanent head coach than Westlake Village (Calif.) Oaks Christian athlete Michael Pittman.
Pittman said UCLA, where he was initially committed, made one final effort last week for him, but he told them he was sticking with USC.
"UCLA came by and they asked me if I still had interest and I tried to do it in the most respectful way I could, but I told them I was pretty much locked into USC," said Pittman. "Even from the beginning, I made it that I wanted to stay in California."
The four-star was excited when assistant coaches Tee Martin and Marques Tuiasosopo were retained by Helton.
"I'm getting so close to graduation, so pretty much being at 100% on USC was big for me," said Pittman. "I mean, those are your position coaches and then the head coach too. We have a great relationship. It makes it a big family. It's unfortunate that we lost some of the defensive coaches but if that was necessary for USC to win, that's what's necessary moving forward. I wish the best for the coaches and now I hope we win the Holiday Bowl."
Pittman was on campus last week, the day after Helton was made the permanent head coach and got a chance to watch the Trojans practice. While there, he saw Max Browne and Sam Darnold, the quarterbacks expected to compete for the starting job with Cody Kessler graduating.
"I've been to a couple of practices, but just from what I've been hearing, Max will probably be the starter and I think he's going to be a great quarterback. It's hard to replace Cody, but with Max and Sam Darnold, I'm excited."
Pittman will return to USC this weekend for his official visit.
"I went there to schedule my official visit so we're going down there this weekend for my visit," said Pittman.
This week, Pittman had his U.S. Army Bowl ceremony at his school.
"Making the Army Bowl is a grear honor and even more exciting because I get to go out there for our nation's veterans and current serving guys."