In Bizarro Coaching World, recruiting doesn't make sense, either. First, Florida's
To review: Kiffin (NCAA target) goes to USC (future NCAA punching bag). Common sense would dictate recruits would run for the hills. What happens? He lands one of the most sought-after players in the nation.
Given everything that's happened in the past 17 days, that makes perfect sense.
Back in the land of conventional wisdom, something a little less unusual happened on Tuesday in Duncan, S.C.
"We won't be going to Tennessee now," the elder Willis told SI.com.
Willis had narrowed his choices to UCLA, North Carolina and Tennessee. He announced his commitment to Tennessee during Saturday's U.S. Army All-American Bowl in San Antonio. The elder Willis said the family had spoken to UCLA and North Carolina coaches on Tuesday night after the Kiffin news broke.
Had Willis, a defensive end, set foot in a class at Tennessee, he would have had to obtain a waiver from the NCAA to transfer without sitting out a year. "I'm glad it happened when it happened," Gary Willis said. "It could have been a real mess."
Brandon's Byrnes High teammate,
If those names sound familiar, it's because Willis and Miller were the two recruits a pair of Tennessee hostesses visited at their game against Gaffney High on Sept. 25. That visit invited scrutiny from the NCAA, which wants to know whether the women acted on their own or whether they attended the game on the orders of a Tennessee staffer. With no reason to be loyal to Kiffin, will the women talk to the NCAA? The players broke no rule, so they won't get in trouble. Tennessee no longer employs those coaches, so the Volunteers probably would emerge unscathed. Guess who the NCAA would target? Anyone who wants to hire a coach in the NCAA's doghouse should ask an Indiana basketball fan how that story ends.
Later Tuesday, Volquest.com reported that former Tennessee recruiting coordinator
Knowing all this, coaches undoubtedly will unload on Kiffin and his staff to any recruit considering USC when the next contact period begins Sunday. Most coaches engage in some sort of negative recruiting anyway; in Kiffin's case, they don't really have to lie. Of course, they've had more than two weeks to cast doubt on Meyer's return. Despite a lot of coaches' best efforts, Florida keeps reeling in recruits. It's a safe bet the charismatic Kiffin, in spite of everything, will haul in his fair share come national signing day.
Just another day in Bizzaro Coaching World, where up is down, left is right and the most precarious coaching situations attract recruits like moths to a bug zapper.