Pat Haden still standing by Lane Kiffin
|Written by Josh Kendall|
Posted by: Josh Kendall on January 22, 2013
If there was any doubt, USC athletic director Pat Haden still is firmly in Lane Kiffin's corner.
"I understand people disagree with me. . . . But in my judgment, and I get paid to make the best decisions I can for USC, there's no reason that Lane Kiffin shouldn't be our coach," Kiffin told the Los Angeles Times in an article published in Tuesday's paper.
Haden acknowledged the Trojans did not play well at times on the way to a disappointing 7-6 season, but added, "these are things that all can be fixed. And they all can be fixed by Lane Kiffin."
As for the issues that popped up throughout the season, such as deflated balls and swapped jerseys, Haden said Kiffin gets blamed for some things he shouldn't because of who he is but also said he could handle things better.
"He's anti-Teflon," Haden said. "I mean, stuff sticks to him that doesn't even belong on him. His reputation, it's going to be really hard to sanitize that over time unless he kind of wins a lot of games and does things right, which we plan to do."
Haden would not comment on what Kiffin might need to do in 2013 to keep his job secure.
"I'm not answering that question," he said. "Sometimes when you're calling plays . . . you don't sense maybe the whole team. So I think he has to really sense the whole team and feel and have the relationship with the whole team. . . . Secondly, 'Don't sweat the small stuff, Lane.' Don't worry about injury reporting at practice and whatever other things we kind of trip ourselves up on - jersey numbers and things. Let's just focus on ourselves and not focus on anything else but us getting better."
Josh Kendall is a staff writer for CoachingSearch.com and has covered the SEC for more than 15 years for papers such as the Athens Banner-Herald, Macon Telegraph, and The State. He’s the father of two boys who he’s hoping don’t inherit his wide receiver frame and offensive guard feet. Follow @EyeOnCoaches on twitter and send your feedback to email@example.com
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