The Alabama Crimson Tide were forced to hire a new offensive coordinator after Doug Nussmeier left the program to take the same position with the Michigan Wolverines. Nick Saban wasted little time, reportedly interviewing and then hiring former head coach of the USC Trojans, Lane Kiffin, on Friday. While Kiffin’s reputation has taken a huge hit with the way the USC job fell apart before he was ultimately fired earlier this season, Saban has found himself an excellent offensive coordinator and Kiffin will be very successful leading the offense in Tuscaloosa.
For all of Kiffin’s faults as a head coach (and there were many), Lane Kiffin is an excellent offensive mind and a top-notch recruiter. He’s infamous for his incredible drive and focus on the job, devoting an obsessive amount of time to his craft as a coach. At USC, he seemed to get overwhelmed handling all the responsibilities of a head coach as he refused to delegate responsibility and things began to fall apart. Given the chance to focus on just one aspect of the team, calling plays on offense, it limits Kiffin’s scope and allows him to dive into the job head first without getting overwhelmed.
Saban recognized the talent of Kiffin as an offensive coach, inviting him to meet with the coaching staff before the AllState Sugar Bowl to “share and exchange ideas” according the Alabama coach. Saban obviously liked what he saw from Kiffin in those meetings and will now turn the offense over to Kiffin in 2014. With the elite prospects constantly running through the Alabama program, it will give Kiffin plenty of blue-chip athletes to work with as he puts his stamp on the Tide going forward.
While many will make jokes about Kiffin’s failures before joining the Alabama staff, there is no denying the experience and talent of Kiffin as a coordinator. He will find ways to use the talent in Tuscaloosa to their fullest potential and have the Alabama offense clicking in 2014 as the Tide look to reclaim their spot as the kings of college football.