Lane Kiffin Isn't a Fan of the 10-Game, SEC Only Schedule
Playing an SEC opponent every week is sure fun for fans and the general buzz around college football.
But it seems like coaching staffs are not a fan of the new SEC schedule, rearranged because of COVID-19, and it may even be hurting their players' development as well.
Ole Miss head coach Lane Kiffin shared his thoughts on the 2020 schedule on Wednesday with media, elaborating on some of the issues that arise from playing a schedule with only conference games.
"Any coach that tells you they like it, I don't know if they're really being honest," Kiffin said. "I don't think it helps the development of your team."
Now coaching is a profession judged heavily based on wins and losses. Obviously, Ole Miss would have wanted to play those three easier non-conference games this. Prior to COVID-19, they had games scheduled against Southeast Missouri, Middle Tennessee and Georgia Southern.
Not only are those easier wins for the coaching record, it's time for coaches to evaluate players. Oftentimes in such blowouts, coaches get opportunities to play younger and more inexperienced players in the second half as evaluation.
This season, not only did coaching staffs not have spring ball for evaluation, they're also not getting those non-conference matchups.
"Having a game or two that hopefully go in your direction and you can play a lot of players in the second half (is helpful)," Kiffin said. "Especially for first year coaches, we had no spring ball. We've never coached these guys. We had no idea. I don't think this would be something the coaches want, personally."
Ultimately, this hurts first-year coaching staffs more than others.
At places like Ole Miss, Arkansas, Missouri and Mississippi State, time for evaluation was nearly nonexistent this offseason. Now there's no in-season evaluation time either.
This SEC only slate was never really meant to be a long term solution. Sure, it's exciting for fans and intriguing for television networks and the leagues for future revenue opportunities, but it seems like the people in the positions of most power in the league – the coaches – may not be for it.
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