The NCAA announces more sanctions against Tennessee resulting from a major infractions case against one of Junior’s assistant coaches.
Just keep telling yourselves it was all part of the plan, Vol fans.
At times like this, I’m hard-pressed to find one.
And if you think the student manager did that on his own, I’ve still got some choice beach front property in Hahira available. We should talk.
This Pete Thamel piece on Junior is brutal, just brutal. Take this bitch slap, for example:
For all his star studded recruiting classes and creative ways he’s handled USC’s scholarship restrictions, Kiffin lacks the coaching acumen to match his recruiting prowess. No coach interviewed said that the Trojans lacked talent. But many pointed to the lack of discipline, as USC’s 9.44 penalties per game lead the nation by a landslide, even after committing just three against Oregon. (UCLA is next with 8.89). Multiple coaches pointed to two other weaknesses of Kiffin — poor game management and the appearance that Kiffin goes for style over substance. USC poorly managed the clock in its loss to Stanford last season and couldn’t hold a 15-point lead deep into the third quarter against Arizona. Kiffin was also criticized for not spiking the ball on a last-ditch drive at the end of the Arizona game, a 39-36 loss.
“Don’t get me wrong, he’s a bright, young guy,” one coach said of Kiffin. “He really is, but he doesn’t have the patience, I don’t think, or the maturity to understand that if you win 7-6 that’s just as well as winning 70-6, and your guy doesn’t have to break every record in America. He’s out of the Heisman business. Go about your business winning games.”
But as bad as the Laner gets slammed, it’s what’s said about his daddy that’s the real killer.
On his headset Saturday night, as USC failed to force Oregon to punt until the game’s waning minutes, Monte Kiffin said he heard consistent pleas from his son.
“Can we get a stop here?” Monte recalled Lane asking him. “Can we slow these guys down?”
USC never did. In back-to-back weeks, the Trojans have given up a combined 1,318 yards to Arizona and Oregon. Long after Saturday’s game ended, Monte Kiffin’s voice was hoarse and he appeared overwhelmed after the worst consecutive weeks of a coaching career that spans nearly a half-century.
“It’s mind boggling,” he said. “I’ve never heard of that many yards. It’s mind boggling.”
Monte’s expertise is what allowed Lane to sell the plan to a couple of gullible athletic directors. If that’s vanished like a fart in the wind (“Monte Kiffin called around the Pac-12 last year looking for clues on how to stop the spread, according to one coach.”), what’s left ain’t too pretty.
Maybe they need more Wild Boys.
USC routinely shuffles numbers between games for a variety of reasons. But, according to NCAA rules, “Numbers shall not be changed during the game to deceive opponents.” If cited, the infraction calls for a 15-yard unsportsmanlike conduct penalty.
However, officials typically monitor only the numbers worn by offensive linemen, which in college must be between 50 and 79.
Asked if Kessler’s number switch during the Colorado game was meant to deceive, Kiffin said, “We’re just playing within the rules of college football.”
The NCAA football rule book includes a section called the “The Football Code” which is part of the American Football Coaches Assn.’s Code of Ethics. In a list of “unethical practices,” the first item is “Changing numbers during the game to deceive the opponent.”
The hilarious thing here is that the Laner felt the need to do this in a game against 1-6 Colorado, which currently sits at #159 in Sagarin. Sure it’s perverse, but you’ve got to love a guy who’s that comfortable in his dickitude. Maybe if he took all his attention to that and devoted it to game planning instead, Southern Cal wouldn’t keep losing to Stanford.
It took less than half a minute for Junior’s sphincter to tighten sufficiently to cause him to bring a post-practice presser to an abrupt end.
Sure sucks when the plan doesn’t go according to the plan.
Bonus amusement: What’s So Great About Lane Kiffin? Word. Nothing but word.
Bruce Feldman captures a touching scene after Stanford beat up Southern Cal to win:
One young girl in a red Stanford sweatshirt — she couldn’t have been more than 18 — rushed up to Lane Kiffin and just started screaming, “[Bleep] you, Lane Kiffin! [Bleep] you, you [bleepin'] loser!”
Part of the plan, darlin’. Part of the plan.
The problem for the Laner is that Pat Haden doesn’t appear to be the enabler Mike Hamilton was.
As of Wednesday night the ban was lifted after a discussion was had with USC athletic director Pat Haden. Policy or not, there is such a thing as bad publicity when it involves banning media interaction.
“I am happy to say my football practice ban was lifted after talks with Pat Haden and area sports editors. Practice policy talks continue,” Wolf tweeted Wednesday night.
Pat needs to get with The Plan.
A few tempting morsels set out in the buffet line for you this morning:
The Laner lies about his Coaches Poll vote, gets called out by USA Today for lying and offers the lamest excuse imaginable.
Kiffin told USA TODAY Sports by phone Thursday night that he didn’t think the quote misrepresented his vote. By saying what he did, Kiffin said he meant that he wouldn’t vote USC No. 1 if he were in the media or coaching another team. Because of NCAA-imposed scholarship restrictions, USC is operating with 75 scholarship players, 10 less than the regular maximum of 85.
“We have less players than everybody else,” Kiffin said. “So looking at it from the outside, I wouldn’t (vote USC No. 1). Did I? Yeah, I did. That’s not based off of 75 vs. 85. That’s based off of (USC players) Matt Barkley, T.J. McDonald and Robert Woods and Marqise Lee. When everybody has the same record, I can’t go into a meeting with our players and have them say, ‘You put that team and that team ahead of us.’ That’s why I did that.”
Yep. He did it for the children. Because he’s that kind of guy.
I hate to admit it, but I may have found the first opponent that’s going to make me root for Notre Dame in a game.
UPDATE: Yeah, I’d say this classifies as chutzpah.