Farewell letter to Coach Helton heyrev Junior Member Joined: Aug 24, 2017 Messages: 1,779 Likes Received: 1,912 Nov 4, 2019 #1 I have this letter ready to go when Clay is fired, probably on November 24. I haven't been a contributor to this board for some time now--frankly, it was ruining my enjoyment of CFB and I had to back away. To better days ahead. FWIW... Dear Coach Helton, I just read the news that you’ve been terminated as Head Coach. Personally, I am terribly sorry it had to end that way but as you well know, it’s the nature of your profession. I’m not writing to argue the merits of that decision—right or wrong, given the negative perception of your program, it had become impossible for you to lead with the necessary credibility and authority to be successful. A change was the only viable solution, though sadly, it claimed many innocent victims. In so many ways, you were one of those, however, as the Head Coach, you bore the weight of responsibility. As a dedicated Trojan fan for over half a century, I write to sincerely thank you for your four years of service. You have been a model of: 1. Loyalty. In 2013 when your fellow coach quit in a childish rage, you selflessly stepped into the gap for the sake of the team. In 2015 you again stepped up to fill the void of poor leadership. When offered the job full-time, you took it on with great optimism despite knowing the program was in shambles and that the dysfunction caused through no fault of your own would need years of recovery. Never once—though you could have—did you blame or complain. 2. Grace under fire. USC “fans” are insufferable most times. They are entitled, spoiled, have zero patience, and mostly ignorant of not only football, but what’s involved in the art of coaching. They define “winning” solely by a record, but they can’t even agree on what’s acceptable there. They’re merely critics and safely removed from the front lines where all their complaints and ideas avoid testing. Having coached my entire adult life, I know how difficult it is to ignore them, but you did so with class and dignity. As you went about the actual work, your focus was always on the right things. 3. Exemplary Conduct. Never once did I sense you using those kids as a tool to further your own ego or career. That disease is rampant in college sports but you stayed healthy and set a constant tone of humility and selflessness toward serving your players. You maintained a long-term attitude for their sake seeing them more as young men than merely football players. You won’t leave behind National Championships but you leave those student/athletes a model of something much more important. In due time they will know that. Thanks, Coach Helton, for all your dedicated hard work. You stood in the gap when no one else dared. I wish you the best moving forward, travyav, TrojanHorse, KeepCalm&FightOn and 8 others like this.