Southern Miss athletic director Jeff Hammond held a media roundtable today and here are some of the topics that were discussed:
* Redshirt sophomore quarterback Arsenio Favor has been granted his release and will transfer elsewhere.
This marks the second recent departure of a quarterback after Anthony Alford was granted his release, leaving USM relatively thin at the position.
Freshman Kyle Sloter, Ricky Lloyd and Chris Campbell are the only scholarship quarterbacks remaining on the roster.
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Don't be surprised if Favor shows up at a place like Alabama A&M.
* Lytrel Pollard, a former USM football player and assistant coach, has returned to the school as head coach Todd Monken's new secondary and cornerbacks coach.
Derrick LeBlanc, who comes from Wyoming, will coach the defensive line.
* Hammond spoke in support of Conference USA and declined to say whether the Big East had contacted the school about potential membership.
* I'll have much more on expansion and Hammond's future with the school in a story that will run in Thursday's Sun Herald.
* Hammond acknowledged that Florida Atlantic and Middle Tennessee State are set to join the conference for the 2013 football season, a year ahead of their planned addition.
Hammond said that he and other Conference USA administrators will meet Jan. 22-23 in Miami to discuss the matter.
Adam Sparks of the Murfreesboro (Tenn.) Daily Journal reports that the early addition of FAU and MTSU will likely be announced by Feb. 6. The Sun Belt Conference and the two schools are still debating the size of the buyouts they would owe the league.
* Hammond said that USM will soon be making announcements when it comes to football scheduling.
He believes that the difficult non-conference schedules ahead will help put the football team in a better position to earn a bid to one of the major bowl games once the playoff system is in effect.