Pola Returns to USC

Consider it a season of homecomings. Lane Kiffin, Ed Orgeron, Pat Haden and J.K. McKay all returned to USC. Now former Trojan player and coach Kennedy Pola is back in the fold, hired Saturday to serve as offensive coordinator and running backs coach.

Consider it a season of homecomings. Lane Kiffin, Ed Orgeron, Pat Haden and J.K. McKay all returned to USC.

Now former Trojan player and coach Kennedy Pola is back in the fold, hired Saturday to serve as offensive coordinator and running backs coach.

"It's great to welcome Kennedy home," Kiffin said in a statement. "This is a great opportunity and promotion for him. He's done an outstanding job wherever he's been in college and the NFL. The last time he was here, he helped build the foundation for the championship run of the past 9 years. It's always great to bring another Trojan back to the family, as he's now the fifth former USC player on our staff."

The Tennessean first reported Pola's hiring.

Pola, like Orgeron, was hired by Paul Hackett and then retained by Pete Carroll when he was hired in December 2000. Between 2000 and 2003, Pola recruited and developed the likes of Justin Fargas, Reggie Bush and LenDale White.

At the end of the 2003 season, Pola left for a job with the Cleveland Browns. From 2005 to 2009, he worked for the Jacksonville Jaguars, turning former UCLA standout Maurice Jones-Drew in an All Pro running back.

A fullback for USC from 1982 to 1985, Pola was set to start his first training camp with the Tennessee Titans next week. Instead, he takes over a position that opened up at the beginning of July when the contract of Todd McNair, a key figure in the Bush case, was not renewed.

That timing was not ideal for all parties involved, something Kiffin noted.

"We reached out to Kennedy yesterday to gauge whether he had any possible interest in returning to USC before we moved forward with the process. Kennedy said he would think about it and get back to us today. Once Kennedy did call back earlier today, out of my great respect for Coach Fisher I immediately reached out to Coach to make him aware of the situation," he said.

"I have spoken with Coach (Jeff) Fisher and he now has an accurate understanding of the timeline of events."


The hiring of Kennedy Pola is another positive move by Lane Kiffin.


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