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Category: Tim Floyd

Former USC coach Tim Floyd takes 'high road' in reacting to Garrett's ouster

Former USC basketball coach Tim Floyd said he departed the Galen Center before the 2009-10 season due to a "lack of support by my administration." But when Floyd, now the head men's basketball coach at Texas El Paso, learned Tuesday that Pat Haden was replacing Mike Garrett as USC's athletic director, he said he preferred to "take the high road" instead of bashing a man whose leadership Floyd clearly felt was lacking in key situations.

Floyd has told news organizations in the past, including The Times, that he felt abandoned by Garrett when a Yahoo Sports report alleged he had accepted $1,000 from a Los Angeles events promoter who was a close associate of former Trojans' star guard O.J. Mayo. Floyd insisted he never took the money, and said he felt vindicated when the NCAA this year reviewed the allegation and declined to discipline him.

Last year, Floyd told reporters, "Why I left was not in any way an admission of guilt. ... The day the story broke, my athletic director called me and asked me where I was. I happened to be in New Orleans after being there for seven months. He asked me if I'd read the story. I said, 'Yes. And I did not do what I'm accused of doing.' Two, 'Where are you?' 'I'm in New Orleans.' The third thing he said was, 'You need to get your [self] back to Los Angeles so I can decide what I'm going to do with you.'

"That did not register well with me, did not sit well with me. I always said I would only stay at a place as long as I was wanted there. It was a situation where the athletic director was more worried about himself than our program. Everything we had done to establish that program as one of the top national-level programs in the country was being destroyed from within. Players being released, the treatment of our coaches, the treatment of me as the head coach. ... And at this point in my career, I didn't feel like I needed to stay there and deal with that. I felt I'd done enough over 33 years of being in this business to never have my integrity challenged and did not appreciate it."

On Tuesday, Floyd told The Times, "I loved my experience at USC -- the facilities and the players -- and I wish Pat Haden nothing but the best.

"I know from my latest experience at UTEP how important it is to be supported by the athletic department. I value that and hope Pat Haden does that with his coaches and players at USC, it's a great place with a storied history. SC has some of the greatest athletes in this country, and they'll continue to get them regardless of who's sitting in that [athletic director's] seat."

Floyd said his bitter parting with Garrett "is past history. That's gone. It's over. I would hope the university the best. I wish him [Garrett] the best."

-- Lance Pugmire

USC football: Mike Garrett on NCAA hearing 'Glad it's over'

Tempe, Ariz.--USC's three-day hearing before the NCAA's Committee on Infractions is over.

A hotel employee just wheeled out seven boxes of documents and two very thick six-inch binders labeled as USC's response to allegations.

"Glad it's over," USC Athletic Director Mike Garrett said as he got onto the elevator to leave.

Asked if he was happy the hearing had ended, USC President Steven Sample said, "I can't even say no comment on no comment." Then as he walked away from a group of reporters, he added with what sounded like a sense of hope, "It will come out. It will be great."

I'll have more later at latimes.com  

--Gary Klein

USC football: Tim Floyd concludes testimony at NCAA hearing

Tim Floyd just finished a day of testimony before the NCAA Committee on Infractions.

Floyd exited the ballroom with new football Coach Lane Kiffin following close behind, Kiffin then offering a handshake and good-luck wishes to the former Trojans basketball coach.

A former member of O.J. Mayo's inner circle has alleged that Floyd paid former Mayo advisor Rodney Guillory $1,000. Floyd, who resigned last June, has denied the allegation.

Floyd was in good spirits after his appearance, but he declined to comment about the hearing, citing instructions from the infractions committee.

"I wish I could, but I can't," he said, adding that he appeared because "it was the right thing to do."

Jim Darnell, one of Floyd's attorneys, would not discuss specific allegations Floyd was questioned about, but he said he thought Floyd got a fair hearing.

Asked if Floyd was able to vindicate himself, Darnell said, "We got the opportunity to present our side of the case."

Were they successful?

"I'll know that in two months," Darnell said.

Asked what he hoped the end result would be, Darnell said, "What we want is for Coach to be dropped out of this completely."

I'll have more later at latimes.com/sports

-- Gary Klein

USC football: NCAA hearing turns to basketball and Tim Floyd

USC's third day before the NCAA's Committee on Infractions is coming up on the four-hour mark with the basketball program and former basketball coach Tim Floyd the focus.

Floyd wore a stern expression when he emerged during a break.

USC assistant coaches Bob Cantu and Phil Johnson also are in the ballroom.

I'll have more later at latimes.com/sports.

-- Gary Klein

USC football: Todd McNair finishes two days before NCAA committee

USC's hearing before the NCAA's infractions committee is continuing, but running backs coach Todd McNair appears to be done for the day.

McNair, the focus of roughly two days of questioning, exited with his attorney during a break.

Former basketball coach Tim Floyd is in Tempe and was hoping to appear Friday. His lawyer checked with the committee during the break and was told that Floyd's presence was requested Saturday morning.

I'll have more later at latimes.com/sports

--Gary Klein

USC football: Lane Kiffin at hearing as part of NCAA's 'Scared Straight' philosophy

USC's hearing before the NCAA's Committee on Infractions is back in session after a lunch break.

Running backs coach Todd McNair is still here, fielding questions for a second consecutive day.

Pete Carroll is gone, but Coach Lane Kiffin remains because the NCAA encourages schools to bring new coaches to hearings.

Kiffin, of course, isn't new to being a head coach. And he knows the NCAA from his years as a USC assistant and his controversial one-year stay at Tennessee. But this is his first infractions committee hearing.

Former committee chair Tom Yeager said last week that for new coaches, "it's almost like a 'Scared Straight' program."

"They don’t want to be there ever again," Yeager said of coaches. "They’ll tell a [committee] member, ‘I’m having a staff meeting within 20 minutes of getting back on campus. I’m never going to be sitting in that chair answering questions.'"

--Gary Klein

USC football: NCAA hearing continues

Tempe, Ariz. -- Day 2 of USC's appearance before the NCAA infractions committee has begun.

Running backs coach Todd McNair is still here, with his attorney, so the topic of the morning no doubt continues to be football and allegations related to Reggie Bush.

Former basketball coach Tim Floyd is in Tempe and is expected to appear in connection with allegations concerning O.J. Mayo.

I'll have more later at latimes.com/sports.

--Gary Klein

Tim Floyd says, 'Security!'

Timfloyd3 Former USC basketball coach Tim Floyd jumped into a casino food court melee and broke up a fight last Friday. His Good Samaritan efforts were recorded and widely distributed via YouTube.

In an interview today, Floyd told me that when the fists started flying he "waited 20 or 25 seconds for security to come but no one came. I just thought somebody needed to step in and stop things."

Since the video clip went public, Floyd said, "Friends have been calling suggesting I start applying for jobs as a security guard. That was more physical than anything I saw in the Pac-10."

For the full story, jump to my sports media column at latimes.com/sports. Floyd, by the way, settles the question as to whether the man who prevented a woman from hitting Floyd with a chair was indeed Henry Bibby, as Jim Rome has said.

-- Diane Pucin

Photo: Tim Floyd from earlier this year. Credit: Spencer AWeiner / Los Angeles Times

Pittsburgh Coach Jamie Dixon surfaces with tweets

Dixon_300 Pittsburgh basketball coach Jamie Dixon, vacationing in Hawaii the last couple of weeks, has resumed his Twitter communication. USC fans, thinking that he could become the savior of Trojan basketball, won't find much to cling to in his missives.

In it, Dixon (at right) says, "Congratulations to the Pittsburgh Penguins on winning the Stanley Cup!"

Could be a cryptic message on how much he loves being in Pitt.

The next one reads, "I'm looking forward to coaching this team."

We've managed to decode that one.

Translation: "$1.5 million to $1.7 million per year through 2016 to run a program that players are coming to, not bolting from, while playing in a conference where everyone's team makes the tournament and living in a city where NCAA investigators change airplanes instead of set up shop."

Dixon becoming USC's coach? Well, there are longer shots. O.J. getting a presidential pardon, for example.

-- Chris Foster

Photo credit: Frank Victores / US Presswire

The Floyd Files: Introduction

There are a lot of fingers pointing at Tim Floyd, who just resigned as the USC Trojans basketball coach.

After just four years, Tim Floyd leaves USC as arguably the most successful coach in Trojans history.

But an 85-50 record and three straight trips to the NCAA tournament won't be Floyd's legacy. He took over a team that played second fiddle in its own town (to UCLA), and even second fiddle on its own campus (football). He was an affable guy who brought Southern charm to Southern Cal -- as he called the school in his resignation letter. Using that name is a faux pas in the land of Troy.

We eventually learned that the Mississippi native was like a riverboat gambler, taking a few risks and making a lot of unorthodox moves in order to bring USC's basketball program to national prominence. But just a couple of months after he speculated about a Final Four run, he was saying his final goodbyes.

Correction -- he skipped the goodbyes. Floyd gave the school, including his players, no apparent notice. He sent a letter to Athletic Director Mike Garrett and CC'd a Mississippi paper. While the result wasn't a surprise, the timing was.

A lot of attention is being given to O.J. Mayo and alleged impropriety in his recruitment and year as a Trojan, but these allegations have overshadowed other questionable episodes that deserved more attention. Over the next few days, we're going to take a look back on some of the events that really define the Tim Floyd era at USC. This post will be updated and serve as a table of contents. Feel free to bookmark and check back, or go to our new category, The Floyd Files.

-- Adam Rose

Photo: There are a lot of fingers pointing at Tim Floyd, who just resigned as the USC Trojans basketball coach. Credit: Dino Vournas / Associated Press.

USC's Hackett backs ex-Coach Tim Floyd

Hackett On Tuesday, former USC guard Daniel Hackett did what he does best: display intense defense.

Hackett landed hard on the side of USC Coach Tim Floyd, who resigned Tuesday in the face of a mass exodus of players and an NCAA investigation stemming from O.J. Mayo's one season as a Trojan.

Hackett said, "I feel like with all this speculation, Coach Floyd did a selfless act. He resigned for the sake of the program to save the players from scrutiny and embarrassment. He acted like a man."

On the one season he played with Mayo, Hackett said, "I know there were a lot of people around  O.J. But I don't think Coach Floyd did anything wrong. He would do nothing like that."

Meanwhile, Anthony V. Salerno, the attorney who represents Louis Johnson, a onetime confidant of Mayo, had a different view of the situation.

Salerno: "What it looks like is that [Athletic Director] Mike Garrett gave Floyd the option of chewing a cyanide capsule instead of conducting a public execution. Floyd decided to bite the capsule."

Johnson claimed Floyd gave an agent's "runner" who was connected to Mayo an envelope with at least $1,000 on Feb. 14, 2007.

-- Chris Foster

Photo: USC guard Daniel Hackett, left, talks with Coach Tim Floyd during UCLA's 64-60 victory over the Trojans on Jan. 11. Credit: Gary A. Vasquez / US Presswire

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