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Lincoln Riley at the 2018 Heisman Award Ceremony

Lincoln Riley Leaves the University of Oklahoma for the University of Southern California

Already in his five years of coaching, Lincoln Riley has a better repertoire than most of his peers in the college football world. Even though Lincoln is leaving the University of Oklahoma that doesn’t mean he didn’t have success with them.


According to The Sporting News, “Riley is a combined 55-10 in five seasons at the University of Oklahoma, including a 37-7 Big 12 record and 1-3 bowl record.” These stats are very impressive, especially for his age. Lincoln Riley is 38-years-old which is really young for a head coach in the college football world.


Another impressive stat from The Sporting News is that “His team also went 4-0 in the Big 12 championship.” That is so impressive, making it that far in his conference four out five times in his head coaching career. Although you may be thinking if he is such a great coach why doesn’t the University of Oklahoma want to keep him?  


Trust me the University of Oklahoma definitely did want to keep, but it was just the fact that Lincoln didn’t want to stay. There are a few reasons why Lincoln decided to leave the University of Oklahoma. One of the most obvious reasons why he is leaving is because he sees an opportunity for longer-term, sustainable success in the Pac-12 as opposed to the Big 12 and, eventually, the SEC. The Pac-12, Big 12, and SEC are divisions/conferences in college football.


Another reason is that Lincoln Riley has a chance to make the Pac-12 relevant again in the college playoffs. Only two teams in the past six years have made it to the playoffs in the Pac-12. But another major reason according to rumors is that Lincoln Riley was not a fan of Oklahoma going to the SEC. The reason why fans are bashing him is because the rumors say he is scared playing in the SEC because they are the best conference in all of college football. People are assuming he is leaving because it would show that he isn’t a good enough coach. But if he was a bad coach all the things that are happening to the University of Oklahoma wouldn’t be happening.

The departure of Lincoln Riley has really affected the University of Oklahoma. Multiple players want to enter the transfer portal, which means that they want to leave for a new college. It also isn’t any small name players either. Its players have very significant roles on the team.


According to Yahoo Sports, the players that are transferring are Quarterback Spencer Rattler, Wide Receiver Jadon Haselwood, Tight End Austin Stogner, Wide Receiver Theo Wease, Wide Receiver Marcellus Crutchfield, and offensive linemen Brey Walker.


Let me remind you Lincoln Riley took the USC job on November 28th and that many players already have entered the transfer portal. I didn’t even mention the rumors of superstar starting quarterback Caleb Williams wanting to enter the transfer portal as well. Another way the University of Oklahoma was affected is its recruiting which is a vital part of college football.They had really good players commit to them as well. They had several five and four-star athletes committed to them which is the best of the best. One of the most heartbreaking decommits is a second nationally-ranked five-star quarterback, Malachi Nelson. Such an amazing talent and he is now gone. But guess where committed to shortly after decommitting from the University of Oklahoma. Malachi Nelson commits to USC where coach Riley. If this isn’t enough to show how vital Lincoln Riley was to the University of Oklahoma then there is no good enough college coach in any college. 


One last intriguing fact about Lincoln Riley is the contract he signed with USC. And let this be known: USC sure did give everything they could to get Lincoln Riley. The contract is $110 million for 10 years, USC buying both his homes in Oklahoma and adding $500,000 over the asking price, buying him a $6 million home for him in LA, and unlimited use of the private jet twenty-four-seven for his family. This is one of the biggest contracts signed by a college football coach.


People may question why would USC give up so much for him and that is because the last great USC coach was Pete Carrol, who is currently the head coach of the Seattle Seahawks. Peter Carrol was the USC coach from 2001-2010 and ever since he left USC hasn’t been competitive. This shows the amount of trust USC has in coach Riley. By giving him the reigns for the next 10 years and saying give us a national college football title and we’ll take care of you and your family.