Hamilton calm over stir about Kiffin

AD says football 'being talked about and that's not a bad thing at all'

It hasn't taken long for Lane Kiffin to become a household name - at least for those who spend their free time talking about SEC football.

Whether they were comments about opposing coaches or prospective athletes, Tennessee's first-year football coach has certainly been in the news - both locally and nationally.

And for the most part, UT athletic director Mike Hamilton is OK with that.

"The reality is none of that really matters when the rubber meets the road and you play the season," Hamilton said Tuesday of the publicity. "It hasn't shown to have a negative effect on recruiting. Or a significant downside as it relates to our fan base.

"I think that we're going through this window in time where (Kiffin) is getting more attention than he probably wanted. But at the same time Tennessee football is being talked about and that's not all a bad thing."

There's been plenty of good news lately, which has focused on energetic, well-organized practices and signing one of the nation's top prospects: tailback Bryce Brown from Wichita (Kan.) East High School.

Hamilton said he's made suggestions to Kiffin about handling a passionate fan base and far-ranging regional and national media. The advice, Hamilton said, has been well received.

"(It's) nothing more than what he's already done and that's moving forward and coaching our team and concentrating on spring practice and getting on about the business of making us the best program we can be," Hamilton said.

Brown's signing on Monday got the Vols in the news again. Yet it was a far cry from a tumultuous February in which Kiffin accused Florida coach Urban Meyer of an NCAA rules violation, which subsequently drew the ire of Florida and the SEC.

Kiffin quickly apologized but the impression left on many in the national media may have made the UT coach an easy target.

"He's certainly drawn media attention nationally," Hamilton said. "I'm not sure all that came from the Urban Meyer comment at the recruiting celebration.

"His being selected as the youngest coach in the NFL when he was with the (Oakland) Raiders then leaving the Raiders, and us selecting him as the youngest coach in college football, that probably draws some attention."

Too Late to the Party?: Like Kiffin, Hamilton isn't pleased with the recent increase in prospects who make their decision well after National Signing Day in February.

"I don't like it," Hamilton said. "If four or five do it one year, then the next year you're going to have 15 to 20 that want to do it and so on and so forth.

"The reality is by the time February rolls around and signing day happens, I think most guys should have a pretty good idea about what they're going to do. I'm a big believer that there should be a deadline after signing day that you have to sign."

Hamilton suggested a 48-hour window or, at the longest, a week for prospects to sign their national letter of intent.

"I don't know what the penalty is if you don't sign by a certain time," Hamilton said, "but there needs to be a deadline to sign."

As a member of the Athletic Personnel and Recruiting Issues Cabinet, Hamilton's voice will be heard on the matter. He said he's open to excluding prospects from summer school if they can't sign within a preset deadline.

That would put pressure on prospects to sign, yet not keep them from enrolling in time for the fall semester.

Most top-level players want to enroll in summer school to jumpstart their freshman season. Typically, such elite prospects are the ones who are currently waiting until well after National Signing Day.

"The coaches want them in summer school because they're getting a jump on their academic careers and getting around the team environment," Hamilton said.

Despite the objections voiced by Hamilton and Kiffin to post-signing day signees, UT has benefitted from the trend.

Since signing day on Feb. 4, the Vols have signed three prospects: Brown, cornerback Janzen Jackson from Barbe High in Lake Charles, La., and tailbacks David Oku from Lincoln (Neb.) East High.

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Comments » 111

dvhill100 writes:

Good read. The media stuff is fluff. Win and no NCAA sanctions and we are good.

bluetick writes:

Better to be in the spotlight than no light. I'm sure if Hamilton disagreed we would have already heard about it. How about an update on Ahmad Paige KNS!

smashmouth98 writes:

Good article, it will be interesting if the recruiting period has a deadline come 2010 signing day.

Orange Swarm, REEL THEM IN!!!

DennisVols writes:

I like the attention we have gotten the last couple of weeks regarding Oku and Brown.
Next years class will bring even more positive attention.

bluetick writes:

Seems Jawja lost a top 10 recruit already and is opening things up again.

http://www.bigorangezone.com/index.ph...

GerryOP writes:

in response to DennisVols:

I like the attention we have gotten the last couple of weeks regarding Oku and Brown.
Next years class will bring even more positive attention.

Agreed! Hamilton could have never dreamed how much attention Coach Kiffin would bring to our University. And I really do not see a negative side to it!

172 -- Fear The Kiffin...

DennisVols writes:

The light we were in last season was a Low Light and I really got tired of hearing talk about UT's football team week in and week out.
This year already has more positive than all of last season.

GerryOP writes:

Just for a moment, try to recall what was being discussed this time last year on GVX!

GerryOP writes:

in response to DennisVols:

The light we were in last season was a Low Light and I really got tired of hearing talk about UT's football team week in and week out.
This year already has more positive than all of last season.

Guess we were having the same thoughts!

hoosier_vol_fan writes:

Dave, you might want to take the s off of tailbacks in the last sentence.

Go Vols

jerseydevilvol writes:

in response to bluetick:

Seems Jawja lost a top 10 recruit already and is opening things up again.

http://www.bigorangezone.com/index.ph...

http://sports.espn.go.com/ncf/recruit...

yea i saw that too,espn's story is a little different thouhg

wheatbarley writes:

Today on the radio, Jim Rome went on and on about Coach Kiffin and the signing of Bryce Brown. He said it has been years since he was interested in UT football. I listen to national sports talk radio as I travel in my sales job and it was great to hear the Vols mentioned for a 5 minute segment. Go Vols!

TNisPeerless writes:

in response to chuck0303#1342365:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I think that is "cajones" dude. No worries, I love the Kiffin hire.

ctexorange writes:

Winning cures everything. Win or go back to Oakland. I have yet to see an QB signing. Its all about the QB in the SEC.

pkaplan writes:

in response to bluetick:

Better to be in the spotlight than no light. I'm sure if Hamilton disagreed we would have already heard about it. How about an update on Ahmad Paige KNS!

Nothing has changed on Paige since he was released from the hospital on Friday night as we reported. No practice until March 24.

utmdm writes:

in response to pkaplan:

Nothing has changed on Paige since he was released from the hospital on Friday night as we reported. No practice until March 24.

Thanks for the update.

yeavols#228407 writes:

in response to bluetick:

Seems Jawja lost a top 10 recruit already and is opening things up again.

http://www.bigorangezone.com/index.ph...

Hey dexter Moody..want to come to play at Tennessee? Georgia is laying low and is not involved in the Kiffin fray. Want to be the last to deliver a knock out blow to the ugly horrible bulldogs the VOLS have dominated so long? Join us..what else do you have to lose? It would put us into a top 5 class..come on!

db11_cn writes:

Find a new topic Hooker.

yeavols#228407 writes:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Caspian writes:

Wow, a column about nothing in particular.

DroopyDrawers writes:

in response to ButchIsBack:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Go pound sand.

dvhill100 writes:

in response to pkaplan:

Nothing has changed on Paige since he was released from the hospital on Friday night as we reported. No practice until March 24.

Thank you.

FLAVOLS writes:

in response to ButchIsBack:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Vicki, you know you want to be CLK's bi-och. I know Phil is spending a lot of time now in Maryville fixing up the place. You need to get him away from the house, but cheer up maybe Phil can get another job, possibly something where he can travel again and stay out of your hair. Until that time please take it easy on our new coach, I know you've been in love with Phil for a long time but there is a new sheriff in town.

OKEMO writes:

( tweetering twits )

bluetick writes:

in response to pkaplan:

Nothing has changed on Paige since he was released from the hospital on Friday night as we reported. No practice until March 24.

So then I assume he is Ok? Thanks for the update. Would have thought KNS would have told us what was up though.

bluetick writes:

in response to wheatbarley:

Today on the radio, Jim Rome went on and on about Coach Kiffin and the signing of Bryce Brown. He said it has been years since he was interested in UT football. I listen to national sports talk radio as I travel in my sales job and it was great to hear the Vols mentioned for a 5 minute segment. Go Vols!

Yea I listened to that too. Rome said "Bryce Brown won't be pumping gas anytime soon. Kiffin will make sure of that." LOL. I am surprised he didn't dig deeper into things than he did. Rome is an @ss anyways.

bluetick writes:

in response to yeavols#228407:

Hey dexter Moody..want to come to play at Tennessee? Georgia is laying low and is not involved in the Kiffin fray. Want to be the last to deliver a knock out blow to the ugly horrible bulldogs the VOLS have dominated so long? Join us..what else do you have to lose? It would put us into a top 5 class..come on!

Wouldn't that be sweet. Doesn't have us in the picture so much but when did that matter lately? :)

bluetick writes:

in response to ButchIsBack:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Go suck your thumb in the corner you negative bast&%d! And if this coaching staff starts winning, will you be in the parade or still sucking your thumb and pouting? Just curious.

Timed_vol (Inactive) writes:

the tough time for Lane will be AFTER spring pracice. I think Lane likes to coach and to recruit. that dead time between now and, say, July can be a period when kids get into trouble and the coaches lose their drive.

What I am betting on is this: Lane CAN coach. He DOES understand the game and what's required to win.

I don't much begrudge him not doing well with the Raiders; poor talent, whatever. Pete Carroll wasn't so hot as a pro coach, nor was Saban. Hell, most Pro coaches DO NOT succeed. Why do you think so many get fired every year??

VOLKING writes:

in response to ButchIsBack:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Fire ButchIsBack!

gnm53108 writes:

in response to pkaplan:

Nothing has changed on Paige since he was released from the hospital on Friday night as we reported. No practice until March 24.

Thank you.

Keep us posted please.
And thanks for the best sports site...period.

WeLoveTennesseeVols writes:

in response to UTfan4life:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Please count me in! ORANGE SWARM!!

WeLoveTennesseeVols writes:

in response to BigVolMan:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Sex, sex, sex, sex, sex, sex, love makes the world go round, and round , and round! Children come from sex, love is a commitment. Friendship comes from a Greek word! Nature teaches us things, and we are also children of the Universe. To lay out a word lesbian, and to have it reach a pinnacle? Does it really go high enough>? Go back to romantics, go back to families, to what makes the world work, to be so compact with a word which says so little in one way and so little in another? I am not impressed by your predilections. Even nature knows the ways in which to travel. I am not impressed by your "evil eye", go write your trite statements somewhere else. We plan to orbit the moon here in Tennessee!!!!

OrangeronFan writes:

in response to WeLoveTennesseeVols:

Sex, sex, sex, sex, sex, sex, love makes the world go round, and round , and round! Children come from sex, love is a commitment. Friendship comes from a Greek word! Nature teaches us things, and we are also children of the Universe. To lay out a word lesbian, and to have it reach a pinnacle? Does it really go high enough>? Go back to romantics, go back to families, to what makes the world work, to be so compact with a word which says so little in one way and so little in another? I am not impressed by your predilections. Even nature knows the ways in which to travel. I am not impressed by your "evil eye", go write your trite statements somewhere else. We plan to orbit the moon here in Tennessee!!!!

You are totally insane.

douglasawilliams#582863 writes:

The post signing day recruits have really been a boost for UT football. True, all of are needs have not been filled but this class is certainly respectable even by lofty SEC standards. Can this staff get the current players to a new level of play? The offense was rated 115th in the country last year so there is a tremendous need to score more points. Everyone points to the QB play which was horrible but we also had an extremely anemic rushing attack. Maybe a new proset offense will give us a desperately needed spark. I say no redshirt years for Nuke, Brown and Oku we need them THIS YEAR!!!!! If CLK can go 9-3 or better this season and upset either Florida, Alabama or Georgia than his foot in mouth comments will all be forgotten. If UT goes 5-7 than he will never hear the end of it. GO VOLS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

teampenny#658108 writes:

in response to ctexorange:

Winning cures everything. Win or go back to Oakland. I have yet to see an QB signing. Its all about the QB in the SEC.

I agree. We will not do better than eight wins with out a quality QB I am going on the record it will be 2011 before we have more than eight wins. That is the way I see it. Go Vols

gnm53108 writes:

in response to teampenny#658108:

I agree. We will not do better than eight wins with out a quality QB I am going on the record it will be 2011 before we have more than eight wins. That is the way I see it. Go Vols

You my friend need some BIG ORANGE FROST BREWED KOOL-AID.

teampenny#658108 writes:

in response to TCHDWN10C:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

I agree eight wins is better than what we had. Most everyone agrees we should have signed a QB this year. Defense wins championships and QB's get's you in position so you can play in championship games. Time will tell how QB's work out. After JC has a typical game this blog will be interesting to read. Go Vols

gnm53108 writes:

in response to TCHDWN10C:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Yeh,Signing Brown was big.Coach Kiffin is bringing alot of attention and excitement to Vol land and I am freakin love'n it.

Why the Coach Fulmer bashing?

volnsc51 writes:

in response to ButchIsBack:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Someone call the zoo and let them know we found their missing monkey.

reddevilfever writes:

If Mike Hamilton thinks college football coaches want new recruits in summer school because they can get a headstart on their academics, he is an idiot. They want them there so they can get them used to the college football scene, lifting, conditioning, learning the playbook.

vol88 writes:

in response to ctexorange:

Winning cures everything. Win or go back to Oakland. I have yet to see an QB signing. Its all about the QB in the SEC.

I agree about the QB comment. On a lighter note, all the QB may have to do is hand it to Oku or Brown if they live up to the hype.

You know, we DID complete more than 70% of our handoffs last year. :)

Greyback_Vol writes:

in response to WeLoveTennesseeVols:

Sex, sex, sex, sex, sex, sex, love makes the world go round, and round , and round! Children come from sex, love is a commitment. Friendship comes from a Greek word! Nature teaches us things, and we are also children of the Universe. To lay out a word lesbian, and to have it reach a pinnacle? Does it really go high enough>? Go back to romantics, go back to families, to what makes the world work, to be so compact with a word which says so little in one way and so little in another? I am not impressed by your predilections. Even nature knows the ways in which to travel. I am not impressed by your "evil eye", go write your trite statements somewhere else. We plan to orbit the moon here in Tennessee!!!!

Was that supposed to make sense?

What the hell are you talking about?

Psychovol writes:

I hope Kiff talks forever and backs it up. Remember how frustrating it was when Spurrier quips became reality. What goes around comes around and UT's been too nice for too long.

GerryOP writes:

171 -- Fear The Kiffin...

saveoursaints writes:

I'd be happy just being competitive with our rivals, win or lose. But I agree, we should start seeing more W's come 2011.

pdhuff#552644 writes:

Always consider the source of the noise.

marvinVol writes:

After what I read about our Coach Kiffin, I wouldn't be too worried about a QB. I believe he knows more about what he has to work with than most know. Otherwise he may have taken something less, and lost a commitment spot for next year. Kiffin is a QB coach! We will know better at the O&W game.

Go big Orange!!!

ctownvol writes:

in response to pdhuff#552644:

Always consider the source of the noise.

You heard something too? I couldn't quite make it out, but then again, I didn't care. You? Sounded like a turkey gobbling to me.

TD_4_UT writes:

DC, Gatorz, etc. must be starved for attention. They obviously can't get it on their own site so they come on every storyline KNS has to get it. PATHETIC!!!

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