USC Trojans quarterback Sam Darnold has come under a lot of scrutiny this season. For good reason too, as he entered the year with as much hype as any quarterback in the country. USC head coach Clay Helton probably knows this, but does not seem to care about feedback from his starting gunslinger.
In response to Sam Darnold pleading with anyone who would listen that the Trojans should change play calling a little bit, Clay Helton wasn’t having any of it.
“The hardest critic of the offense has always been me, and right now I like the direction we’re going in,” he told reporters, according to Joey Kaufman of the Orange County Register.
As for what spurned the comment, here is the QB:
“I can sense defenses are focusing on some tendencies of ours,” he said following the 38-10 victory on Saturday. “We just gotta run different plays, have different formations and motion some guys, get away from our tendencies a little bit.”
This is all a bit strange. If Darnold is claiming that he can feel defenses realizing the plays coming, why wouldn’t the coach take that under advisement? Why the need to be stubborn here?
For what it is worth, this doesn’t exactly help the narrative of Tee Martin, either. The offensive coordinator has faced as much criticism as the quarterback this season.
The fact both his signal-caller and offensive coordinator are the ones getting yelled about the most, it makes Clay Helton’s refusal to listen to Darnold all that much more troublesome.