Los Angeles Times

Bill Plaschke: In his battle to fight on, USC's Clay Helton stands as the lone soldier

LOS ANGELES_How badly do USC fans want to get rid of their football coach?

This week I asked a prominent Trojans booster how a loss to UCLA would be viewed if it ensures that Clay Helton is fired immediately afterward.

"I'd call it a win," said the booster.

That's bad. That's real bad.

For any self-respecting USC fan to even hint that they could stomach losing to UCLA if it meant ridding the program of Helton, they really, really, really don't like Helton.

But I'm hearing this everywhere, feeling it from virtually every corner of Trojan Nation, a pervading disgust with the program that I haven't seen during USC-UCLA week in nearly 20 years.

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