Pete Carroll doesn’t coach USC football anymore, but he can’t escape the players of his past. And he’s hearing criticism from one former Trojan in particular, safety Taylor Mays.
Mays was drafted by the San Francisco 49ers with the 49th overall pick. But despite being the first Trojan selected, Mays was not happy that his former coach did not select him in the first round.
The Seattle Seahawks, Carroll’s new team, opted to take safety Earl Thomas with the 14th pick instead.
“I felt he told me the complete opposite of the actions that he took, which was definitely alarming,” Mays said to Bay Area reporters during a conference call.
Mays considered entering the draft last year but decided to stay for his senior season. If he had left a year early, many thought he would have been a top-10 selection. Mays feels that Carroll did not help him adequately prepare for this year’s draft.
“I didn’t have anything to worry about, that my game was OK … All these points and I was kind of led to think that I would have been OK,” Mays said in reference to Pete Carroll’s advice regarding how to better his draft stock.
Although Carroll may have passed on Mays, he did seize the chance to add other ex-Trojans. Will Harris, Jeff Byers, and Josh Pinkard are expected to sign free agent deals with the Seahawks. The team drafted TE Anthony McCoy in the sixth round and acquired former USC running back LenDale White in a trade with the Tennessee Titans.