College Football Preseason Top 25: Every Coach Should Follow Lane Kiffin's Lead
If you're a college football fan then you have kept up with the Lane Kiffin-USC-coaches' poll drama. The head coach, when interviewed, said that he would not vote for USC to be the top team; it would later be revealed that he did vote for USC at No. 1. The ensuing fallout included him talking about how the question was phrased, as USA Today reported:
"We have less players than everybody else," Kiffin said. "So looking at it from the outside, I wouldn't (vote USC No. 1). Did I? Yeah, I did. That's not based off of 75 vs. 85. That's based off of (USC players) Matt Barkley, T.J. McDonald and Robert Woods and Marqise Lee. When everybody has the same record, I can't go into a meeting with our players and have them say, 'You put that team and that team ahead of us.' That's why I did that."
Folks will hate on the Laner, as they are want to do. He's an easy target for a gang of people who already dislike him. However, he makes a good point—if you don't think your team is the best, why should your players?
Thanks to the Kiffin controversy, the University of Southern California stepped up to defend their coach. The fact that his confidential vote was released caused a stir, and the university made sure to point that out, as Inside SoCal details:
"The fact that the leadership of the American Football Coaches Association, which tasks USA TODAY to administer its poll, joined with the poll administrators from USA TODAY to decide to breach that confidentiality by providing to a reporter a coach's vote in its preseason poll is disappointing and attacks the integrity of the poll. Further, that the reporter who was given this information represents the very organization that conducts the poll is a conflict of journalistic interest.''
Well now. We've got a "conflict of journalistic interest" on our hands now. Interestingly enough, prior to the revelation of Kiffin's vote, everything was good. Now that their coach has been embarrassed, the poll itself should not be operating as it is.
In response to the entire ordeal, Lane Kiffin gave up his voting duties, or rights if you choose to call them that. ESPN reports that Kiffin relinquished his duties over the weekend.
Honestly, more coaches should be following in Kiffin's footsteps. Certainly, he and USC arrived at the decision after a somewhat embarrassing ordeal. However, if you get the right answer, even by accident, it still counts.
Should all the coaches dump their vote like Kiffin?
Throw in the fact that the poll itself is inherently biased, as CBS Sports points out more than once, and you've got a perfect storm for shutting it down. That is, unless you're USA Today. The coaches poll is a big deal for the national paper. It still counts in the BCS formula.
Since the poll isn't going to take care of itself, the coaches should do what's right. Dump their votes. Opt out of the madness. We already know it is the national SID poll—end this charade of coaches being informed and voting.
Coaches, give up your vote. It's the right thing to do.
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