If there is sensibility under the dim lights in Hollywood, the latest arrival of Lane Kiffin might be an antidote to abandon the ugly mess. Most are aware that a toxic wasteland has polluted the coolest and popular atmosphere in Los Angeles, with outrageous scandals diagnosing the uncertainty for an impaired program.
At USC, pending investigations are currently putting a freeze on a multitude of potential recruits, forcing the former coaching staff to flee the monstrous havoc. That’s not the case for Kiffin, who promptly came to the Trojans’ rescue, expected to be named the next head coach of USC. He is, the new football coach, reducing tears and generating smiles as Pete Carroll’s successor after the Trojans former coach left for the airport a day ago to prepare for an NFL coaching job.
Kiffin is the main attraction returning to the West Coast and departing from the South to attain employment in Southern California, an environment where he is used to the warm receptions, the traditional melody of the “Fight On” anthem. He worked under Carroll for six years, studying and mastering the formation and integral methods to football.
Never mind the horrific downfall at Tennessee, a program that gave Kiffin a shot to strengthen an impotent school after a divorce badly ended with the Oakland Raiders, during a brief assignment in the NFL.
Put aside the alleged NCAA violations, even though he’s still being probed for committing six infractions. Forget about the alleged female recruiting hostesses that the New York Times investigated and acknowledged that women visited prospects in North Carolina.
There are populace believing he’s not suitable to coach a program with a quantity of issues. USC cannot allow more sanctions to ruin credibility, arguably at the most respected program at least before the preface of scandals became ugly. If he committed minor crimes at Tennessee, the latest slip ups are hard to elude and makes it hard for Kiffin to convince that he has grown and past the rogue stages of his flowering coaching career.
In two-plus seasons, Kiffin’s 12-21 record isn’t flawless or something to rave heavily on. The demoralizing 37-14 loss to Virginia Tech wasn’t impressive in his first season as a college football head coach, especially when Kiffin hasn’t had much without his former boss Carroll. He leaves Rocky Top for a Hollywood makeover, given the privilege to take on a steeper role and excel as an acute successor.
Fourteen months in Knoxville, his reputation teetered for acting childish and blubbering with SEC coaches. He had a verbal confrontation with Florida coach Urban Meyer, when he accused him of illegal recruiting. And ever since losing to its archrivals, Kiffin was described as the laughingstock of the SEC, the little kid who wasn’t sure of how to manage a program alongside the old timers.
All over the nation, he was derided for all the foolish nonsense. Losing control of a disoriented team, three of his freshman players were arrested and charged with armed robbery. In an attempt to revamp a program of unforeseen failures, he’s a great suit for the program.
Lots has to do with Kiffin’s fiery attitude, bringing intensity and is powerful in luring top prospects. His ability to persuade goes a long ways, even though much of his crafty exertion appears impractical for the alleged conspiracies.
Bringing aboard Kiffin to a program when times aren’t suitable, the polarizing athletic director Mike Garrett isn’t terrified of a regal athletic department degenerating. Nor should the average Trojans fan.
If they are brave enough to understand and trust in Kiffin, very well he could be the next greatest head coach after he observed and listened to Carroll. One ghastly season isn’t enough proof to say whether he’s a joke as a head coach.
In Oakland, under an ill-tempered owner All Davis, he wasn’t given enough time to transform a pessimistic franchise. Same goes for the year spent in Knoxville, where simplicity and inexperienced underlined first impressions.
The headaches have yet to expire, and probing still persists whether former running back and Heisman Trophy winner Reggie Bush allegedly was lavished with improper gifts and benefits by two businessmen who shouldn’t had been allowed to influence student-athletes.
And suddenly, prolific running back Joe McKnight is hightailing, trying to escape a sanction that he’s being held liable for. He has decided to expand on a promising future, and will declare for the NFL Draft as well as receiver Damian Williams.
However, the disturbing headline these days revolves around McKnight, who is being investigated for driving a Land Rover registered in the name of a businessman who has a website called www.4joemcknight.com.
The Trojans aren’t in bad shape able to rebuild around a sensational quarterback Matt Barkley, who has the potential and talent to lead the Pac-10 in statistics. Just a day ago, Matt’s father said he’s expected to return for his sophomore season.
It isn’t such a bad suggestion to rebound under the 34-year-old Kiffin, either. Bringing a reliable staff he has instituted, a workable nucleus that could present problems for the emergence of Oregon and Stanford.
While grudges are shown toward Kiffin, he’s bringing a crafty staff along, which makes the Trojans favorable. Monte, his father and defensive coordinator, and Ed Orgeron as his recruiting coordinator will travel to Los Angeles. And to top things, Norm Chow may revisit the Trojans as offensive coordinator.
With seemingly a lot of questions, the players are satisfied by the replacement. Kiffin could be mistaken as a student, but the players already have tremendous respect. Barkley and running back Marc Taylor calls it the perfect replacement for Carroll. And Garrett issued a statement, elated of the greatest gift since Carroll accepted the job last decade.
“Lane brings a lot to the table,” Garrett said. “He has a coaching background both in the pros and in the best collegiate conferences. He has a great command of the X’s and O’s. He is familiar with the Trojan landscape and will be a great representative of our university. He keeps the game fun. And, very importantly, he has proven to be one of the finest recruiters anywhere.”
Having familiarity is the key to building upon success, a brilliant recruiting coordinator, a father who has great knowledge of defensive methods to fight on. We’ll see if this measures up to multiple national titles.
But according to my senses, the Trojans will hoist the crystal football.