Kirk Herbstreit names Brian Kelly as a USC possibility – really

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I thought I had heard it all in regards to the USC coaching search on Tuesday when Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin fired any belief that he may leave his post for Southern Cal or any college job directly into the sun.

But an even more ridiculous name has been named as a USC possibility by a college football analyst I like and respect.

Notre Dame’s all-time wins leader, Brian Kelly.

I’m going to guess you just went back and reread the last two sentences and before you ask, no that’s not a misprint.

And I’m guessing we’re sharing the same thoughts, but I’ll proceed anyway.

Kirk Herbstreit, a man I really enjoy the work of, said on the Pac 12 Network on Sirius XM Radio Tuesday that Brian Kelly is a possibility to be USC’s next head coach. Take a listen to the full quote below and we’ll try to make sense of this.

“I keep going back to, I think Brian Kelly would be an interesting hire and an interesting name. I’m not saying Brian Kelly would leave Notre Dame but if I’m USC I might knock on his door and talk to him. I don’t know if Brian Kelly would leave (for) anywhere. You know, I think he’s in a really good spot, but it’s worth asking, so anyway, I think he could be a possibility.”

Herbstreit would go on to mention Luke Fickell of Cincinnati as a USC candidate as well.

Is Kirk baiting me? Seriously. Did he do a news search of his name and come across Fighting Irish Wire’s posts about his weekly top six teams or the love he recently gave Tommy Rees? Is he trying to get me to react to this comment?

Does he think if simply says anything about Notre Dame football that I’ll react to it, no matter how outrageous it sounds?

If so then congratulations Kirk, you got me hook, line, and sinker.

I’ll say this: Herbstreit is right that it’d be an interesting hire. That’s simply undeniable.

But there are a lot of people who would be interesting hires that would be more likely to take the job than Brian Kelly.

I don’t think Bill Parcells is up to much these days, he’d certainly make things interesting.

Charlie Weis is a new grandpa but him taking the USC job would be interesting.

Lane Kiffin would be interesting to put it subtly.

Mike Price has had a history of success out west as he led Washington State to a pair of Rose Bowl appearances. His name would certainly be interesting, too. As would the reality TV show that could follow his potential fun nights out in Los Angeles.

Tyrone Willing…who am I kidding? He’d find a way to make “The Sopranos” uninteresting.

Perhaps Kelly’s agent, Trace Armstrong got in the ear of Herbstreit and got him to float the idea. Then Kelly’s camp can go to Notre Dame brass and ask for more money, something that Kelly was asked about back in 2015 when Steve Sarkisian was fired by the Trojans.

But why on God’s green Earth would Kelly, at this point in his career and seemingly as close as he’s gotten Notre Dame to their ultimate goal, leave to go and rebuild a USC program that has so much catching up to do?

I hope Kelly at least gets himself and his assistants a couple extra bucks with all this silliness.

Related:

Brian Kelly’s all-time results vs. USC

Notre Dame’s updated bowl projections trending upwards

Notre Dame’s updated depth chart for North Carolina clash

ND-UNC: Eight prop bets for Saturday’s game

Notre Dame’s statistical leaders through seven games

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