The Half Monty Strikes Again

It seems that every time Lane Kiffin opens his mouth it's just to change feet. The adolescent head coach of the Tennessee Volunteers has picked up his third minor NCAA recruiting violation by publicly commenting on the talents of Kansas running back Bryce Brown.

The highly rated runner is scheduled to visit Tennessee this weekend and is one of a handful of top prospects that have not yet signed with schools.

According to the Knoxville News-Sentinel, Kiffin discussed Brown in a radio interview and referred to him as a "great player". NCAA rules allow you to acknowledge whether or not you are recruiting a player, but clearly prohibit commenting on a prospective student-athlete's skill. Here is the entire comment as posted on the newspaper's website:

"Once very talented players do things, it becomes the cool thing to do and so the next guy does it and more and more guys do it," Kiffin said on The Sports Page. "I think what's going to happen is you're going to see... great players like Bryce Brown are doing it now. So now it's going to be more next year and more and more next year."

To be fair the comment is rather innocuous and the highest rated unsigned player in the country probably already knows he's pretty damn good. Kiffin saying so publicly doesn't help Tennessee get the kid, nor does it put pressure on Brown to sign up in Rocky Top.

But it's yet another example of a guy who falls into one of three categories. Either he doesn't know much about the rules, he isn't smart enough to remember the rules or he just doesn't give a rat's butt about the rules.

Let's add it up. Kiffin has had to apologize to Urban Meyer, Jeremy Foley, The University of Florida, Pahokee High School and Pahokee coach Blaze Thompson. He has insulted, though not apologized to Nick Saban and Steve Spurrier. He has been reprimanded by the SEC Commissioner, and now he's violated recruiting rules for the third time.

ALL BEFORE HIS FIRST PRACTICE

I don't know what kind of coach Lane Kiffin will be. He has obviously assembled a talented and wealthy coaching staff, but Tennessee has to be concerned. The Vols have a lot of work to do to catch up to the top teams in the SEC and they won't get there on big words. They also don't need to make their task more difficult by becoming the team everybody wants to stick it to on the field and on the recruiting trail.

Kiffin has entertained the fan base by showing he is unafraid to verbally challenge the top coaches in the SEC, but if he doesn't challenge them on the field this fall they won't be smiling for long. We'll know soon if Kiffin's mouth is writing a bunch of checks his coaching ability can't cover.


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