Poll shows many ADs would not hire Lane Kiffin
The general perception is that Lane Kiffin has done a lot to bolster his reputation after a successful season at Florida Atlantic, but to many of the people whose opinions matter most, he’d still be a no-go as a coaching candidate.
Yahoo Sports recently polled 15 college athletic directors on whether they would consider hiring Kiffin at their school, and the feedback was quite resounding: 11 said no, some emphatically by adding several exclamation marks, while two said yes and two said maybe.
“Can he get a job? Sure,” one source said, via Pete Thamel of Yahoo Sports. “He’s a world-class play caller, knows the game and can recruit. Do I think we’re at a moment in time with off-field issues and the FBI probe that people are less apt to take that risk? Yes.”
In general, the athletic directors cited his propensity for drama and perception of immaturity as reasons against even considering him.
“Not a chance,” one AD said. “Too much smoke/drama around him. And he’ll probably think he’s Vince Lombardi if he wins another season.”
“Not if it’s the same immature Lane,” added another. “I have no idea if he’s grown up and is ready to be a leader of all things of a program, not just a coordinator and play caller.”
One athletic director was a bit more charitable, saying “I do think he’s rehabilitated his image, so to speak, and is an attractive candidate should he have a great year this year and keep his nose clean.”
But that’s the thing. Kiffin’s schtick works at a school like Florida Atlantic, which wouldn’t get a lot of attention otherwise and likes the publicity he single-handedly brings to the program. If you’re a more established program that doesn’t need to be constantly putting yourselves in the headlines for off-field reasons, the sniping with his ex-boss and the blunt, unapologetic nature won’t fly. Just look at this athletic director’s reasoning for passing up the chance to hire Kiffin and you have the same reason that a lot of his contemporaries would likely give, too.