Kiffin watch: if you talk fast, maybe nobody pays attention to what you’re saying.

Besides Clay Travis, nobody was a bigger winner at SEC Media Days than Junior.  No overt gaffs, no recruiting violations, a good quip or two…

New Tennessee coach Lane Kiffin visited Tebow when he was Southern Cal’s national recruiter, but he knew early on his chances were slim.

“He had a Florida Gators mailbox right there as you pulled into his farm,” Kiffin said. “I should have known we weren’t getting him at that point.”

… and suddenly the press isn’t so harsh.  In fact, while we don’t know if he coaches like Pete Carroll, it seems that you can close your eyes and he sounds like Carroll.

But for those who’ve seen Pete Carroll press conferences, Kiffin talks in much the same choppy manner that his old boss does.  It’s as if he’s so excited that he’s trying to get as many points out as quickly as he can.  Carroll gives off that same vibe.

Mmmm… dreamy.

But it’s still the same old contents in a new package.

“Do I love every single thing that I’ve done for my seven months? No, I haven’t loved having to do it,” Kiffin said. “But it needed to be done to get to where we wanted to be.”

What a trooper!

He’s sticking with that it’s-all-part-of-the-plan shtick.  Except when he isn’t, of course.

As David Ching points out, it’s still the same old Laner.

… The first-year Tennessee head coach insists that the commotion he has created since his hiring in November was worth it since it pushed his new Volunteers program into the national spotlight. That it’s OK to publicly blast fellow SEC coaches, criticize a recruit’s grandmother when the recruit signs with another school, gain attention for a spate of minor recruiting violations – “we probably weren’t as educated as some other schools on the rules,” Kiffin explained Friday, “we” being the collection of mercenaries and ex-NFL assistants who now comprise his 10-man staff – simply because it generates media attention.

Oh, and that whole “he’s got your backs, kids” thing Junior’s got the troops buying into?  Well, maybe there’s a little backtracking to do in the face of the Mighty Gators.

… I have great respect for Florida, what they’ve done there. I would think Florida is not worried one bit about us. We’re 5 7, they’re the powerful Gators. We’re just trying to play in the same conference as them.

That’s certainly a, um, different song than the one he was singing at the start.

When Tennessee linebacker Rico McCoy heard Lane Kiffin say he wanted to sing “Rocky Top” after beating Florida this fall, he was a little intrigued.

But after offseason workouts began and spring practice started with a bang, McCoy has a simple message for his new coach: Say whatever you want.

“I was like, ‘Oooh, coach is talking trash,’ ” McCoy said. “But after we started the workouts, I’m like, ‘Hell yeah, coach.’ I know we’re going to be in the best shape, and we’re going to have the best coaching. Say whatever you want. We’re going to play ball. I feel like we ought to be able to beat anybody.”

You may want to check on that again, Rico.  Your coach wants to be liked now.


Filed under Don't Mess With Lane Kiffin, Media Punditry/Foibles

9 responses to “Kiffin watch: if you talk fast, maybe nobody pays attention to what you’re saying.

  1. kckd

    Senator, he made the same gaff he has always made and evidently the press is too dumb to call him on it.

    In his PC at the media days, he waxes poetic about how he had to do these things and they were all planned to put UT out there. Obviously still the two biggest things he’s done were calling Urban a cheater and saying Pahokee tried to sabotage the commitment of Nukeese Richardson. That got him “out there” and got people noticing all the other things he says.

    Now, within minutes of saying it was all part of the plan, he talks about the comments he made at the booster meeting pertaining to both Pahokee and UM as just trying to excite his fanbase and that he didn’t realize the media was there or that it would be such a big event.

    Now you can’t have it both ways and once again the media never questioned him about how the two statements do not correlate.

    This has to be the fourth or fifth time between private interviews and public ones that he’s made this mistake, but no one asks him to explain how it was both planned for UT to be in the media, but at the same time was not meant to be a big deal in the media.


    • Agreed.

      The real story from SEC Media Days – if you want to say there’s been a real story – is how awful the media coverage was, from Tebowgate to Clay Travis injecting himself into the narrative with the virginity stuff. Old media, new media, it didn’t matter.

      In one sense, I’ve got to give Kiffin a lot of credit here. He knew what kind of people he was dealing with and he played them beautifully. He may be somewhat FOS, but he showed his smarts.


  2. kckd

    Here are the two quotes from the presser:

    “We couldn’t wait till the season to win games, because when you win games, that’s the easiest way to get recruits. We didn’t have time to wait for that. We had to put Tennessee in the national media. Do I love every single thing I’ve done for my seven months? No, I haven’t loved having to do it. But it needed to be done, in my opinion, for us to get to where we needed to be. ”

    The second:

    Q. You received some flack about your comments about Pahokee. How did you patch up that situation, if you have? Are you allowed back in the school?

    COACH KIFFIN: “Yes, we are. The Pahokee comments, Urban Meyer comments, are at the exact same event. After this right here, I’m going to move on from this, okay, after today, because it’s time to get to football. I’m going to explain it to you in this setting.

    The setting that it was in was Tennessee. I’ve said the statement before. I know when y’all watched it on TV, it looks completely different. It looks like I went in front of the national media and made these statements about Urban and Florida. It was a group of Tennessee boosters the morning after signing day of our Tennessee boosters at an energetic breakfast. I made some over the course of the two hours I was up there or something, I made two statements, one about Pahokee energizing the crowd, one about Urban, that if you were there, anybody I talked to that was there, including people in our athletic department at the time, thought nothing of it because they were laughing and joking. It was just amongst our people.

    Well, like anything nowadays, there was one camera there. The one camera there happened to pick it up and it became a national story. Looks like I went in front of a setting like this and made those statements. ”

    Is it just me, or are those two statements saying exactly the opposite? And that’s in the same setting, within minutes of each other and no one asked him to clarify anything.


  3. baltimore dawg

    i was surprised how deferential most all the coaches were to the questioners and just to the whole event itself–even saban. there was practically none of the standoffishness i’ve come to expect (and to enjoy immensely). what has slive done to these guys? given the way sec football sits astride a huge chunk of america’s sporting life right now, you might expect them to be a bit more full of beans. seems like there was a real effort to project a generally subdued tone maybe because of the economy.


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  5. Left to Right

    Kiffin’s excuse for the litany of secondary violations is that his coaches “probably weren’t as educated as some other schools on the rules”? With the exception of his father, every coaching hire he made was with an eye towards the recruiting prowess of the assistant coach brought in. How in the world can he therefore say they weren’t “educated” on the rules of recruiting?

    As for Spurrier, in reading his quotes from the Ching article, he almost sounds like he wants someone at SC to put him out of his misery and fire him, as he seems to be incapable of mustering the energy to just quit on his own.

    “I’m a 7-6 sort of coach right now. I don’t have all the answers and don’t pretend to.”

    Perhaps he should go get checked for depression and see if medication or behavior modification can roust him out of his lethargy.


  6. Dog in Fla

    “Kiffin watch: if you talk fast, maybe nobody pays attention to what you’re saying.”

    But this should not lull Lane into thinking that just because he got no shive stuck into him in B’ham he still needs to remember


  7. Dog in Fla

    UT LB Rico knows like Uncle Rico that it’s all disinformation and that he can throw a football over them mountains and Lane can throw a load at sportswriters and enemy coaches…