USC hires Pendergast as defensive coordinator

USC hires Pendergast as defensive coordinator

Published Jan. 18, 2013 2:54 p.m. ET

USC’s football coaching staff continued to turn over Friday.

As expected, the school announced that Clancy Pendergast has been hired as defensive coordinator, replacing Monte Kiffin. Linebackers coach Scottie Hazelton also will depart to become Nevada's defensive coordinator, according to Bruce Feldman of

Pendergast, 45, was defensive coordinator at California the last three seasons.

“Clancy is a perfect fit for us,” Head Coach Lane Kiffin said in a statement. “He is a very experienced and successful defensive coordinator. He plays an attacking-style defense with multiple looks and, having spent the last three years in the Pac-12, he knows how to defend the various kinds of offenses that we see in this conference. “

At Cal, Pendergast oversaw a defense that ranked first in the Pac-12 Conference in 2010 and 2011 before falling to 10th last season. Cal Coach Jeff Tedford was fired after the Golden Bears finished 3-9 overall and 2-7 in the Pac-12.

Pendergast was defensive coordinator for the NFL’s Arizona Cardinals from 2004 to 2008, the team reaching the Super Bowl in his final season. He was the Kansas City Chiefs’ defensive coordinator in 2009.

Hazelton, 39, joined USC’s staff last season as a replacement for Joe Barry, who returned to the NFL with the San Diego Chargers.

Hazelton was formerly defensive coordinator at North Dakota State, which won the NCAA FCS title in 2011.

-Gary Klein