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Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism University of Southern California

Pac-12 Media Day Sitdown with Head Coach Steve Sarkisian

USC head football coach Steve Sarkisian talks about coming to USC, the training and development of his players, and the Trojans' new slogan #TurnUpSC.

It wasn't the first Pac-12 Media Day for USC head coach Steve Sarkisian, but on July 23, it was the first time he was there representing USC. 

Sarkisian was previously head coach at the University of Washington from 2009-2013, where he had a record of 25-25. He said in his experience of head coaching, the most important thing he has learned is: "patience, patience, patience." 

"You learn to be a lot more patient with your players, learn to be a lot more patient with your coaches. I think you learn to allow your coaches to coach, and you don't micro manage them," he said. 

Since taking on the head coaching job at USC on December 2, 2013, Sarkisian has said that he will implement an up-tempo style offense. This has made practices more intense. 

"We won't ever change the intensity of practice. We're going to practice hard...It's physically, mentally challenging," said Sarkisian.

Sarkisian said that at USC, he wants his players to focus on the journey, rather than the number of wins and losses they have. 

"The record and scores, that is the byproduct of [the journey]. That is the end result. So I want to make sure these guys enjoy the journey," he said. 

He even addressed USC football's new slogan for the 2014 season: #TurnUpSC. 

"It's just something fun," he said. "You try to stay connected to the kids as best as you can. 

It was recently announced that USC will face Alabama in the Cowboys Classic to open the 2016 season. While Sarkisian says that this is a huge game for the program, he said that the team's focus is on this season's opener against Fresno State. 

Sarkisian makes his USC head coaching debut against the Fresno State Bulldogs on Aug. 30 at 4:30. 

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