By: BE Coleman
SEC Commissioner Mike Slive spoke to the SEC coaching faces about the need to cease the spiels, which have taken place the last five and a half months. But, South Carolina’s Steve Spurrier let in go in one ear and out the other.
Spurrier waited for the right opportunity to go to work on Lane Kiffin publicly in front of the stalking news media, that had hoped for a story of this nature when the reservations were booked.
The wily Spurrier was ready to make headlines. Anyone thinking his persona has changed since leaving the NFL on a down note, found he is crawling back into his familiar self.
Reporters hounded Tennessee head coach Lane Kiffin for another day with the exact same questions they had asked yesterday. “Do you intend on apologizing – again to Urban Meyer?”
A tiring Kiffin, who has apologized, told the media that he had not been given an apology from Carolina’s Spurrier over the jab Spurrier took on day one of the Kiffin hiring in Knoxville.
Spurrier, noted in December how Kiffin could be recruiting on day one; if he had not taken the NCAA test to allow him to recruit players. What Spurrier was not told was that Kiffin had already informed the media during his hiring introduction to the press, that he had taken the test.
“I’m still waiting for coach Spurrier’s apology for calling me out on the first day I was there, saying I didn’t take my test,” Kiffin said. “I haven’t gotten that yet, either.”
Spurrier then said, “I didn’t accuse you of cheating,” pointing toward Kiffin. “I said, Is it permissible to call recruits before he’s announced as head coach, before you take the test?”
Kiffin never said Spurrier had cheated, but Spurrier’s wordsmith vocabulary could only find the “I didn’t accuse you of cheating,” phrase.
Spurrier then jumped to the elevator where Rich Brooks, Bobby Petrino and Gene Chizik were, to once again announce that he did not accuse Kiffin of cheating. “I didn’t say he broke the rules,” said Spurrier.
An angered Kiffin said nothing and left, that leaves many to surmise the assault by the coaches may be more on behalf of former head coach Phillip Fulmer’s demise in Knoxville at this point, than Kiffin himself.
Fulmer was a poster boy for getting beat up in the media over the course of his tenure, suddenly Fulmer is not there. Kiffin made no excuses for doing what it took to get the Volunteer program national notice.
Tennessee had slipped several cogs over the last decade after having one of the best runs in college football in the 1990’s under Fulmer. There is no secret the program needed more big time players on the roster.
Kiffin refused offers by the media to comment upon his 2010 signing class.
Kiffin noted that would be a violation, and he wanted to make it through the week without making a mistake. “I’m trying to go one week without that,” noted Kiffin.
Slive’s words seemed to have little effect on the high profile egos in the world of SEC Football coaching names. Spurrier may have possibly decided that he wanted some of that national headline limelight himself to boost his recruiting presence.
Either way, this battle apparently is far from over, and will carry onto the playing fields this fall. Slive said his pointed words weren’t directed at the Tennessee coach, claiming that he just wanted to remind everyone what the SEC should be about.
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