A former USC defensive star is back with the Trojan football team.
Sammy Knight, who played at USC until 1997, has been hired by football coach Lane Kiffin to serve as a graduate assistant. He will work with the secondary.
During his time at USC, Knight lettered all four years and recorded five interceptions and 290 tackles. He became a linebacker senior year after starting as a safety during both his sophomore and junior seasons.
In his senior year alone, he had 121 tackles, more than anyone else on the team. That year, he also received All-Pac 10 honors and was the team’s MVP and co-captain.
Knight was not known for having great speed, however, his ability to take correct angles and learn his positions well gave him the edge he needed to succeed.
He did not get drafted after leaving USC in 1997. Nonetheless, he went on to play 12 seasons in the NFL, playing for teams including the New Orleans Saints, Miami Dolphins, Kansas City Chiefs, New York Giants and Jacksonville Jaguars. In 2002, he made the Pro Bowl as a member of the Saints.
Knight is replacing Kris Richard, another former Trojan football player. Richard is taking an assistant job with the Seattle Seahawks, the team that former football coach Pete Carroll is now coaching.
Knight is not the only member of his family with ties to the Trojan football team. His brothers Ryan and Darryl played on the team as a tailback from 1983 to 1986 and a linebacker 1998 to 2000, respectively.