USC expected to have interest in John Harbaugh as HC

If the University of Southern California fires coach Clay Helton, the school could look to the professional ranks to fill its most high-profile job.

NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported Sunday on GameDay Morning that Ravens coach John Harbaugh is believed to be among their top three candidates.

Harbaugh, whose team sits at 5-5 entering Sunday's tilt versus the Oakland Raiders, has been on the hot seat this season but could cool speculation with a winning streak to close the season.

Per Rapoport, Harbaugh joins ex-Raiders coach Jack Del Rio and Penn State coach James Franklin atop USC's wish-list.

First, the school would have to can Helton after a disappointing 5-7 season, which could happen in the next 24 hours or so, according to Rapoport.

One issue with the Harbaugh speculation is whether USC would be willing to wait until after the NFL season is over to take a shot at luring a pro coach.

We're several stages away from Harbaugh dawning a USC cap on the sideline, but consider speculation season open for business.

UPDATE: USC AD Lynn Swann explained in a statement Sunday that Helton will remain the head coach.

"Clay Helton is our head coach and he will continue to be our head coach."

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