With all the hate being thrown around about Lane Kiffin's ethics (is it deserved), your humble USC reporter thought it might be valuable to see if Kiffin and his staff had indeed pursued Tennessee recruits. During his press conference Kiffin made a point of saying that he would not recruit players who had committed to Tennessee, UNLESS they requested he do so.
He stated at the time of his conference that he was not aware of anything assistant coach Ed Orgeron might have been doing to contact recruits before he landed! Clearly, Kiffin infuriated the Vols fans with the way he left.
It is now clear that he had little choice but to get out of town fast because nobody was able to predict the unbridled hatred that would come out of the SEC and especially Tennessee for Kiffin and even USC.
In a conference known for coaches who have stretched the bounds of ethics (Petrino , Saban , Meyer , Nutt , fill in your own____________). Kiffin has become the poster boy (deserved in part for running his mouth trying to put Tennessee back on the football map and several secondary recruiting violations ) for a non SEC guy who gave the state of Tennessee and the SEC the proverbial finger.
It was worse when the finger pointed to beautiful and talent rich Southern California. In effect he was saying, "USC is my dream job and this is my only chance for the job, so I'm gone!"
The unbridled hate for this guy has been off the chart (deserved, maybe?) but the looking the other way or justification for actions similar (coach Derek Dooley leaving for the U.T. job) have been amazing and entertaining too!
So, has Kiffin pursued some of his Tennessee recruits? Would he indeed pursue those recruits if they wanted to talk? The answer is a big yes! Sorry Vol fans but this is a "big boys" business and this kind of thing always happens.
Just today it was reported on ESPN that SEC recruiters were claiming that Urban Meyer might be headed to the Dallas Cowboys . So, all the Tennessee and SEC vitriol about Kiffin's ethics are directed to a guy they hate who left for a better job that came out of nowhere. End of story!
It is important to note that U.S.C. recruits for need so this year's class, while great in overall talent (average four stars most recruiting services) is not particularly big.
Some services even rank USC. number 1 in overall talent which if it turns out that way would say great things about Lane Kiffin's ability to hold things together. So, any Tennessee recruits are being targeted strictly for need.
Here is the low down so far on the Kiffin Tennessee connection...
Glen Stanley - This was a late offer for a kid who can make an immediate impact. Stanley made a visit to USC this weekend. He is currently committed to Tennessee and look for Vol nation to travel to Southern California to personally lynch Kiffin if this excellent player signs with SC.
Late news: Stanley is a Trojan! Expect Vol nation to be unhappy about this defection!
Nickell Robey - This excellent player four star has made a soft verbal to Georgia and was very interested in what Kiffin had to say while he was in Tennessee. He visited USC and looks to be a significant prospect for the Trojans.
Late News: Robey is in the Trojan fold and a big loss for Georgia, Tennessee and the SEC.
Chaz Green - He is a very versatile player who was committed to Lane Kiffin and the Vols though silently. Now it appears it is between USC's pro-style system versus hanging at home with Florida.
Green is less of a certainty at this point. So keep an eye on this one! He announces at 12:30 PST.
Late News: Green has committed to Florida. It looks like these rating services are ranking Florida number 1 based on the amount of recruits they have inked. USC is consistently rating with the best overall talent no matter where you go, but they do not have the numbers. It reminds me of the BCS. Just a beauty contest and no substance!
Has Lane Kiffin and his staff made an impact on any other Tennessee recruits? Look for the hate and anger to be rekindled if he has. My suggestion is that he does not take a vacation into Vol land or the entire (selective memory) SEC anytime soon.
(About the writer: Jon Sarver is the co-founder of Fanrevolt.net , a site that is committed to Dumping the BCS and demanding a college football playoff. Check it out if you are tired of the current BCS system and want a change now!)