It's been a tumultuous season for coach Steve Sarkisian and USC. Monday, Sarkisian's time with the Trojans ended with his firing. As the Trojans try to move forward and prepare for rival Notre Dame this week, a look back at the last two months.
Aug. 22: Steve Sarkisian attends and speaks at a preseason booster event. Various reports surface that Sarkisian was intoxicated, used inappropriate language at the podium and was slurring his words.
Aug. 23: Sarkisian and USC athletic director Pat Haden offer statements regarding the incident through the school. "I sincerely apologize to my players and staff and to our fans for my behavior and my inappropriate language," Sarkisian says. Haden adds: "I met with Coach Sarkisian, and I expressed my disappointment in the way he represented himself and the university." Sarkisian blames his behavior on a combination of alcohol and medication.
Sept. 5: Focus turns to football, as Sarkisian's Trojans, ranked No. 8 at the time, defeat Arkansas State 55-6 to open the 2015 season in Los Angeles.
Sept. 19: The No. 6 Trojans lose their first game of the season to then-unranked Stanford 41-31 in Los Angeles. It is Stanford's sixth victory over USC in the last nine meetings.
Sept. 26: USC bounces back from the loss to Stanford to beat Arizona State 42-14 in Tempe.
Oct. 8: In a matchup against the program he used to coach, Sarkisian suffers his second loss of the season, this time losing 17-12 at home against Washington. USC enters the game ranked No. 17 and a 17-point favorite, but scores just one touchdown on national television.
Oct. 11: The school announces that Sarkisian was asked and agreed to take a leave of absence for an undisclosed condition, and that offensive coordinator Clay Helton will take over as the Trojans (3-2, 1-2 Pac-12) prepare for a road game versus Notre Dame on Saturday. According to ESPN sources and an LA Daily News report, Sarkisian was suspected by his staff to be "under the influence" during the Arizona State game on Sept. 26, but Haden was apparently unaware.
Oct. 12: Sarkisian is fired. "Through all of this, we remain concerned for Steve and hope that it will give him the opportunity to focus on his personal well-being," Haden says in a statement.