Carroll Lures Holt Away From Rams

Times Staff Writer

Another bountiful recruiting season continues for Coach Pete Carroll.

A day after Nick Holt announced he would resign as Idaho’s coach to become the defensive line coach for the St. Louis Rams, Carroll on Tuesday lured the former Trojan assistant back to USC by hiring him as defensive coordinator.

Carroll has served as the Trojans’ defensive coordinator since he was hired as head coach before the 2001 season, but Holt said by phone late Tuesday night that Carroll wanted to spend more time on the offense.

“He said he’s going to do some other stuff and he feels real comfortable and trusts me,” Holt said. “I knew he always did, but he’s giving up something that’s very important to him, which is a heck of a compliment. It’s the power of USC.”


Holt, 43, served as linebacker coach at USC from 2001 to 2003, then left to become head coach at Idaho, where he worked as an assistant from 1990 to 1997.

Holt made $205,000 last season and reportedly would have made more than $300,000 a year with the Rams.

But Carroll called Holt on Monday and convinced him to rejoin a staff that is losing defensive line coach Jethro Franklin, who has accepted an offer from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Holt said it was difficult to inform new Ram Coach Scott Linehan, a close friend, that he was taking the USC job.

“But then your mentor calls you and wants you back. It’s just amazing how everything works out,” he said.

Carroll could not be reached for comment Tuesday night.