Lane Kiffin's announcement surprised even those who'd seen it all

Former UT head football coach Lane Kiffin talks to media following his resignation Tuesday, Jan 12, 2010.

Photo by Michael Patrick

Former UT head football coach Lane Kiffin talks to media following his resignation Tuesday, Jan 12, 2010.

Chris Walker reacts to Kiffin's exodus from UT

— Here is a quick look this morning at the reaction to the surprise announcement that Lane Kiffin has left the University of Tennessee to return to the University of Southern California.

The news caught most sports analysts and writers and bloggers by surprise. And if you hear them say otherwse, they're revisionist liars.

The implications of this lurch for the Tennessee program, near mid-January, are so huge, sports writers and bloggers are still sorting it out. But the short answer is: Not good. National football recruit signing day is just a few weeks away.

Wiedmer: So long, Lane, we hardly knew you: We should have seen this coming on Monday. Right about the time then-Tennessee coach Lane Kiffin said "no comment" about the Southern Cal job. A man wrapping up his first year as head coach at a tradition-rich school paying him $2 million a season shouldn't say "no comment" about any other college job. Mostly because he shouldn't be in line for one after a 7-6 season that ended in a 23-point bowl loss.

Climer: Lane Kiffin leaves Vols in coaching lurch: Just kidding, Vol Nation. You’ve already been through enough. If you play with fire, you’re going to get burned. And Lane Kiffin’s abrupt departure has left the University of Tennessee football program ablaze.

Lane Kiffin's gone, and the Big Orange is mournin' | Mark Bradley: So how do you feel now, Vol fans? Your brash young coach is no longer your coach at all. The guy you defended whenever he committed one of his secondary violations, which was hourly; the guy you believed would recruit his way to the top of the SEC 26 well, he's in the wind, and you're up the creek.

Where does Tennessee go from here? | Mr. College Football Tony Barnhart: After 30 years in the business, not a lot surprises me any more. Lane Kiffin's bolt for USC just three weeks away from National Signing Day surprises me. It also makes me sad. This is not a good night for college football. Some quick thoughts:

The Recruiting Fix: Making sense of it all - VolNation Blog: So far we have lost Delvin Jones, Michael Taylor, and Brandon Willis from our commit list. I am sure there will be more names. As far as who is staying, right now it appears that most of our early enrollees will remain enrolled but that will become more clear when we see who shows up for class on Wednesday.

Not sure what to say yet... | Gate 21: Yesterday evening as I was reading about Pete Carroll's departure from USC, I thought to myself, "gee, I hope they don't come after Kiffin." I dismissed this, however, due to the fact that it just didn't make sense to me that something like that would happen.

More thoughts on Lane Kiffin's abandonment of Tennessee: deep breath, y'all - Rocky Top Talk: As the torches cool this morning, it's probably a good time for all of Vol nation to take a deep breath and a fresh look at things in the light of day.

Lane Kiffin Is Scum - Alligator Army: As a college football fan, especially the SEC, Lane Kiffin is scum. Coaches changing posts is dirty but acceptable. What Kiffin is doing, leaving in the middle of the night and taking Daddy and his big bully, is the lowest of low.

USC Names Lane Kiffin Head Coach -- NCAAFB FanHouse: After days of speculation about who would be the new USC coach, athletic director Mike Garrett has pulled out the surprise candidate to beat all.

And Pete Carroll's successor at USC is ... | Dallas Morning News: Lane Kiffin. Lane Kiffin? Lane Kiffin! Still trying to get my head wrapped around this and the chaos his job switching created.

Muschamp at the top of Vols' list - Chris Low g - ESPN: Tennessee's top target to replace Lane Kiffin as head coach is Texas defensive coordinator and head coach-in-waiting Will Muschamp, according to several people close to the situation.

Lane Kiffin flees Tennessee, goes Hollywood - CFB News - FOX Sports: Though some in Hollywood would likely insist "Gladiator", "Young Einstein" or "A Beautiful Mind" work just fine, perhaps the most appropriate title for the Lane Kiffin-to-USC saga is one that serves as a tribute to Pauly Shore's fine film career, as well: "The Weasel."

Lane Kiffin departure sparks emotions among Tennessee Volunteers - ESPN: Telling his players that he was leaving for the USC head coaching job after only 14 months at Tennessee was dicey enough for Lane Kiffin. Several players who were in that emotionally charged meeting said Kiffin was interrupted several times by players yelling out before he could actually tell them that he was indeed moving on.

Kiffin lovefest ends abruptly on Rocky Top - Chris Low - ESPN: My initial thought is that Kiffin must have a pretty good agent. He now has one of the top three jobs in college football and has yet to celebrate his 35th birthday or win more than seven games in a season as a head coach.

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Comments » 94

Rockygrass writes:

Another reason to hate USC

bfowler1161#262198 writes:

When one makes money the object then that is what one becomes loyal to. We hired a mercanary and got one. Now, let's get a football coach that loves UT.

Hamilton keep the Strength Coach. Secure him now, then resign.

Flyfisherman writes:

Stay Classy, Lane....should've seen this one coming...

OrangeUTnatioN writes:

I am completely sick to my stomach

pdhuff#552644 writes:

Such is the ways of D-1 football.

Unfortunately for we Vol fans, USC is a bigger plum than our trying-to-be resserected program.

Well, let's hire a new coach and try again to dig ourselves out of this 2nd class hole.

Which was the reason for hiring him in the first place.

GBO

Hoodvol writes:

We got what we deserved. He was a horrible hire and will disgrace USC like he disgraced us. Whoever thought this was a coup to get him as coach should be fired. We supported him, covered for him, tried to ignore the obvious. Now, it is payday. We are going to have to be more objective and not just blind followers. We all knew in our hearts that he was bad news; but we were so starved for some success that we took less than the best and praised him for being a sleazebag.

StroVol writes:

I always thought it was a joke, but the DIRTY SANCHEZ does exist.

vol88 writes:

As Vol fans, we learned about addition by subtraction after the b'ball incident. I firmly believe we will see it again. I was a Vol before that jerk was even born, and I'll be a Vol long after we've forgotten him (which won't be long). GBO!

GreerVol22 writes:

guys, he is a young guy that probably has had the USC job as his dream and goal....he just didn't figure on Pete Carroll leaving this quickly. With all the assistants leaving or interviewing in the past several weeks, my guess is he and Pete talked at the end of the season and Kiffen gave his staff the news well before the bowl game. They say don't hate the player, hate the game...coaches are no different. Hamilton has to move quickly to preserve what little recruits are left but this just sets us back to the point we were at when Phil was let go...this time get it right.

volatil writes:

Has anyone got any info on a coach, other than the Muschamp thing being reported by ESPN?

vol88 writes:

This column made me feel better.

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

graphpro#231211 writes:

Somebody needs to question Hamilton on why the buyout was so small. He should have made that amount huge. NOT $800000. That's nothing in college football.

utfpmd writes:

Bet it didn't surprise Marlon Brown's grandmother.

dvhill100 writes:

Buddy is only half a word.

Hoodvol writes:

in response to graphpro#231211:

Somebody needs to question Hamilton on why the buyout was so small. He should have made that amount huge. NOT $800000. That's nothing in college football.

If the buyout had been several million, we might still have him. It is better to swallow the bitter pill now and get a decent coach and rebuild a program to a high standard that this great university deserves.

TommyJack writes:

Don't get it with all the love for Muschamp. Where's the H/C experience? Not no, but hell no.

jobrando#216494 writes:

in response to graphpro#231211:

Somebody needs to question Hamilton on why the buyout was so small. He should have made that amount huge. NOT $800000. That's nothing in college football.

Right,,,email Governor, State Rep for his head. Majors would be a great AD replacement

jobrando#216494 writes:

in response to TommyJack:

Don't get it with all the love for Muschamp. Where's the H/C experience? Not no, but hell no.

Forget coach talk today and lets pull out the weed at the top now. Our Clemson AD HammerHead

Hoodvol writes:

Ok folks. It is all over now. Nothing to see here. Just the clean up. Get back to work and stay off the computers until your shift is over. Nothing is getting done in the entire state of Tennessee.

chad_t31 writes:

After much rest and sleeping on this last night, although this may be benedict kiffin's "dream job", I still can't stand him.

CrankE writes:

...and take Mike Hamilton with you.

537081 writes:

We need to get a winner like Bosie State coach or TCU or uath's coach. Some body that will look at Tennessee Boys first and will have some loyalty to TENNESSEE not money or someplace else.

redhorsevol writes:

integrity and character are two of the most important qualities in a person including your coach.Kiffin had neither plus no class.He takes those things with him to usc,there doomed as well.I for one am glad he's gone,just the timing is bad.Lets don't panic we are still the VOLS.

badkarma01 writes:

Thanks for the one year and bolt...we need to go after Jon Gruden and retain Kippy Brown...Move forward and Go Big Orange! It's in MY blood

mdvol writes:

in response to marc_ash#231781:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Damn right.

badkarma01 writes:

in response to CrankE:

...and take Mike Hamilton with you.

I am with ya brotha!

OldSECFan writes:

They say "Hindsight is 20-20" but come on - UT is a top rated University and should have seen through Kiffin - when he brought in Ogeron that was a tell-tale sign he's sights were set on somewhere else. I've written this before (and some how GoVolsxtra has chosen not to print it), but UT deserves a coach with long term aspiriations - that may include someone with a thinner resume, but a deeper desire to build and maintain a program.

lail#204076 (staff) writes:

in response to vol88:

This column made me feel better.

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

That is a good one. I'll add to the list.

-- jack lail
kns

rusty_shackleford writes:

It was as if LK was the Anchorman when he looked in the camera and said "Go F yourself, Knoxville."

grumpatiger writes:

WHOOwaaaaaaaaaaa!!!!!

adamsmith5529#630125 writes:

Go ahead and offer 7 mill. per year to JOHN GRUDEN and be done with it. JOHN GRUDEN FOR UT!!!!

TNORANGEDOGDAD writes:

WHAT A KICK IN THE NUTS. Maybe they should nominate Lane Kiffin for his acting role here in INGLORIOUS BASTARD

AlpharettaVol writes:

Just how much money is he getting from SC -- I mean in addition to 20 pieces of silver?

holysmoke writes:

C'mon guys. It really is JUST a game. With thousands dead in Haiti and that entire nation in a shambles, don't you feel the least bit guilty about being part of all this trash talk about somebody as insignificant and passing as Lane Kiffin? In a year or two it'll be Lane Who??? He's just a tiny blip on the IT DON'T MATTER screen. We would do well not to give him the satisfaction of registering our alarm at his hasty departure. The move is no more than confirmation of the fact that he is a snot-nosed-kid with NO CLASS!!!!!!! OOPS--Did I say that?

cooper65#432178 writes:

Hatred toward Kiffin is understandable, but Vol fans are being naive. Most coaches have a dream job and Kiffin's dream job is USC. There should not have been any doubt, he would take the job if offered. Unfortunately, we are not a top 5 coaching dream anymore, probably not a top 10. We can get a guy like Cutliffe who will stay here until he is fired because this is his dream job or we can get an up-and-coming guy who will leave for a better name (in his eyes) as soon as he has success. We used to have the first or biggest stadium, but I think we mistakenly downsized which cost us some prestige. Whomever we hire, don't expect it to be long term unless we get a guy who bleeds orange like Fulmer. I would personally like to see Mike Leech, but I don't think there's much chance of that. I'm sick about what's going to happen to our recruiting class. We may be worse off than we were at this time last year.

jamiepope writes:

Well, we now who was the lier/ problem child in the ugly Al Davis-Little Lane fiasco.

bullit writes:

According to SI Corey Miller is enrolling today in spite of the Willis' trying to discourage him from doing so. We may not lose all recruits. UT is still UT and I love Corey MIller. He is already more loyal to UT than Kiffen ever was. Go Vols! Be strong.

vol88 writes:

in response to cooper65#432178:

Hatred toward Kiffin is understandable, but Vol fans are being naive. Most coaches have a dream job and Kiffin's dream job is USC. There should not have been any doubt, he would take the job if offered. Unfortunately, we are not a top 5 coaching dream anymore, probably not a top 10. We can get a guy like Cutliffe who will stay here until he is fired because this is his dream job or we can get an up-and-coming guy who will leave for a better name (in his eyes) as soon as he has success. We used to have the first or biggest stadium, but I think we mistakenly downsized which cost us some prestige. Whomever we hire, don't expect it to be long term unless we get a guy who bleeds orange like Fulmer. I would personally like to see Mike Leech, but I don't think there's much chance of that. I'm sick about what's going to happen to our recruiting class. We may be worse off than we were at this time last year.

Two things infuriate me: 1. the timing, 3 weeks before signing day, and 2. the whole BS about calling kids the day before they were to enroll and telling them not to go to class. That's classless BS. Leach is an idiot. Kiffin is a loose cannon, but Leach is the King of Loose Cannons. We don't need any more of that.

gnm53108 writes:

For the more seasoned posters...Is this worse than when Dickey left for fl?

Galaxie500XL writes:

I'd have said "I told you so", but I would only be half right. I expected Kiffin would be out in two years, and he did it in one.

oldTNrock writes:

This is the best thing that could happen for Tennessee football. I saw the man for what he is before the first snap last season. Read my posts from last week. We are far better off today than we were yesterday, beleive me.

jdcvols#230433 writes:

What coaches are still in K-Town?

gtalife writes:

Kiffen said he "thinks" that USC was the only job that would make him leave TN? Did he have other dream jobs he was hoping to puddle jump to?

Hope Hamilton doesn't hire someone else whose dream job isn't TN......Please find the candidate whose dream job is head coach for the Vols!!! That's who the fans and the program and the players deserve.

83gator writes:

“This is something that happens very quick. We’ve been here 14 months, and the support has been unbelievable here. I really believe the only place I would have left here to go was … Southern California.” "We're leaving here 14 months later a lot better team than we were 14 months ago." Delicious.

StroVol writes:

I wonder if we're still trying to negotiate a USC game. Kiffin very well could be killed if he came back to Neyland.

BigOrangeVol writes:

I guess Little Kiffy will change his kids name from Knox to Trojan...which is what hunchback Monte should have used in August of '74.

Hair-lip Hamilton is an idiot! Kiffin can bolt in 2010 with an $800K buyout but if he had been fired in 2010 it would have cost UT $7.5 million? And he has a BS and an MBA in Accounting???? Doesn't say much for the Clemson educational system huh?

285exp writes:

Bones Lied.

MidTennVol writes:

in response to utfpmd:

Bet it didn't surprise Marlon Brown's grandmother.

Good one. VERY good one. I hear her laughing all the way from Memphis right now.

reachkim00 writes:

in response to Biggunzz44:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

And Muschamp would bolt for Texas as soon as Brown was done there..don't need another Kiffen. Wish List...Gruden or Dungy...Wishful thinking, but hey, stranger things ARE happening at UT!!
GO LADY VOLS!!!

TNORANGEDOGDAD writes:

I don't think this guy was ever happy here. My wife often commented to me "Does this guy ever smile" I guess we know why now.

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