Florida Atlantic coach Lane Kiffin is in the midst of what could be a special first season in Boca Raton, guiding the Owls to six straight wins and a perfect mark in conference play, but something always gravitates him to the SEC.
On Saturday, ESPN College GameDay aired an interview Kiffin had with Tom Rinaldi, who sat down with Kiffin to ask him plenty of questions. One of them surrounded the rumors about filling Tennessee’s coaching vacancy.
“Time heals everything, I guess,” Kiffin said. “That wasn’t the reaction I remember when couches were burning, sneaking out with the cops to the airport.”
Kiffin was also asked about the series of tweets he’s posted rather consistently about rat poison, which stems from a comment Alabama coach Nick Saban had earlier this season about the media’s coverage of the Crimson Tide.
“I’m taking what the best motivator in all of college football does to motivate his team, and I’m using the same stuff in a different style.”
While some see Kiffin’s standing with Saban in a negative light, Kiffin denied that by turning peoples’ attention to their success together. Here’s what he said about how their relationship is perceived.
“Not well, and wrong. The last 26 times we were on the field together? 26-0. Did it get some taking used to by me? Was it rough at first? Yes, which is my fault. He’s the head coach, you know. Prior to that, the last time I was an assistant coach was six straight years, and that was with Pete Carroll.
“Nick Saban changed me. Three years with him, the best in the world at what he does, and I got to sit there and learn? There’s not a day that goes by that there’s not something I don’t draw in my head, ‘what would coach Saban do?'”
Towards the end of the interview, Kiffin talked about how he used to think about landing the biggest job and making the most money, but he’s learned to enjoy the journey now with the Owls and try to achieve what can’t be done.