Quoting Kiffin: Monday Practice

Look inside to hear what Lane Kiffin had to say about this week's matchup with the top-ranked Oregon Ducks, his reasons for doing tackling during Monday's practice and much more.

Lane Kiffin on the special teams battle:

"Really probably something that is overlooked in this because of the numbers that the offense have put up and them being the No.1 team in the country, but as you look at special teams they have four punt returns for touchdowns. People don't do that in four years, let alone in seven games. They are extremely explosive and there are a lot of similarities in the stats, punt return teams are one and two. They play really well and they actually do a lot of schematically the same stuff that we do. It's going to be a big part of the game."

Kiffin when asked if he watched the 2010 Rose Bowl (OregonOhio State):

"We watched it, especially on the other side of the ball because they did a really good job of holding them down, Ohio State held Oregon down pretty good - and did a good job. Once again, I think last year's offense was good by Oregon but I think this is a whole other level, and they play faster too. Even if you talk o coaches that played them last year compared to this year they talk about the speed being even faster between plays."

Kiffin on doing tackling drills during Monday's practice:

"Going back through the bye and looking at how poorly we tackled, it's been game changing. If we can tackle at all in the secondary, we are 7-0 right now. It's something that we decided to do. We didn't do it all practice but we did some live tackling drills. We did a little bit of that last Thursday with the defensive backs and Michael Morgan, and we incorporated all of the linebackers today."

Kiffin on the USC's tackling:

"Its rusty. You don't all of the sudden tackle well when you haven't all year for the most part. It's something that we have focused on. Instead of just doing drills we did it live, basically with our second-team offensive guys. Hopefully it will pay off."

Kiffin on the pressure of being a No.1 ranked team:

"It does remind me of what a phenomenal run was done here before for the 34 straight wins. And now being on the other side of it, last year playing the No.1 team twice, and now playing the No.1 team you feel how focused your players come to work because they have a chance to play the No.1 team. It's why it's so hard to stay up there and why what was done here before was so phenomenal. Look, three weeks in a row the No.1 team in he country has lost, I believe. It's very hard to stay there because you get everyone's best shot and everybody's focus."

Kiffin on keeping his players from getting overhyped for the game:

"We don't change anything. The only thing maybe that we have changed a little bit, has been because of who we play, not because of how they are ranked, but because of speed of the offense. We still have to maintain our focus. What we saw over the years of people playing us, they get so excited that here come some late hit penalties in the first quarter and too much energy and losing their focus. We got to go out and play very consistent."


Lane Kiffin will face his third top-ranked team in two years. (Jaime Rodriguez Photo)


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