February 13, 2009
Here's Lane Kiffin on the Knoxville News-Sentinel's radio show this morning, making an interesting point about recruits drawing out the singing period well past signing day:
"Once very talented players do things, it becomes the cool thing to do, and so the next guy does it and then more and more guys do it. So I think what's going to happen is you're going to see great players like Bryce Brown are doing it, so now it's going to be more next year, and then more and more and, like you said, five years from now, everybody's going to be waiting. Half your guys aren't going to be signing on signing day unless something's done by the NCAA about a time period. I can see it going down a negative road."
This is a cogent point that will be entirely ignored because Kiffin actually (gasp!) mentioned Brown -- the hyped, fickle, late-signing running back who'll be in Knoxville for an official visit this weekend -- by name, a secondary violation Tennessee plans to report immediately. It's the third minor recruiting violation the Vols have reported against their new coach in the span of a couple weeks, after the fog machine and mock interviews they wrote up in January.
I don't mean to pile on here (really), but if not for those measly infractions, which broke on the heels of last week's legitimately boneheaded "cheater" accusation against Urban Meyer, you probably wouldn't be hearing about the latest snafu at all. It's the kind of tedious, petty violation schools are alleged to be reporting against one of their programs or another on a regular basis, and will probably result in little more than paperwork (for someone other than Lane Kiffin, I presume). It's the kind of tedious, petty violation a coach has to know, of course, but with rival vultures already circling low overhead, maybe Lane would do better to just steer clear of microphones for a while -- unless, that is, one of the News-Sentinel's commenters is onto something: "If Lane speaks in the forest and there is no there to hear is it still a violation!!!!!" On second thought, maybe he just shouldn't speak.
And yes, the headline assumes Brown's weekend in Tennessee will be violation-free. Buckle down and make us proud, Lane.