Kiffin plans to remain at Alabama
(TSX) -- Lane Kiffin expects to return as Alabama's offensive coordinator for a third season. Kiffin made his comments to reporters at the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic media session in Dallas on Sunday, "I'd love to be back," Kiffin said. "We'll ...
(TSX) - Lane Kiffin expects to return as Alabama's offensive coordinator for a third season.
Kiffin made his comments to reporters at the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic media session in Dallas on Sunday,
"I'd love to be back," Kiffin said. "We'll have a new set of challenges with a third year of a new quarterback and replacing a Heisman Trophy winner (Derrick Henry), just as we did with a Biletnikoff winner the year before (Amari Cooper), and some great returning players to work with. I'd be real excited about that."
Sources close to Kiffin also told ESPN.com's Chris Low that there is a good chance he will be back at Alabama next season. The relationship between Kiffin and head coach Nick Saban is much better than has been portrayed, the sources told Low.
Kiffin, 40, was offered the offensive coordinator job with the San Francisco 49ers earlier this year, but he didn't want to leave after just one season with Saban.
"It didn't feel right," Kiffin said. "He really took a chance on me. The phone wasn't ringing, even for assistant coaching jobs. It wasn't, and I felt like we didn't really finish what we started last year and to see if we could go this year and finish how we should have finished last year and get him another championship."
Kiffin left USC, where he was an assistant under Pete Carroll, in 2007 to coach the Oakland Raiders and went 5-15 before being fired during his second season. He then spent one season as coach at Tennessee before returning to USC in 2010 to replace Carroll as coach. He was fired five games into the 2013 season and then Saban hired Kiffin in January 2014.
Kiffin, who has a 28-15 record as a college head coach, reached out to Saban for advice the summer before he was fired at USC, according to ESPN.com. They met at Saban's home in Tuscaloosa, Ala.
"I had 32 questions that I had written out for him and was there taking notes while he's sitting there in his chair," Kiffin recalled. "He was at his lake house, and he flew back and we sat there for three or four hours, and he answered all the questions. People don't understand that about him. He is about helping coaches grow. He is about helping coaches get new jobs and improving."
Kiffin admits he would like to be a head coach again.
"All I can control is improving as a coach and getting our players ready for games and continue working hard for Coach Saban, and then whatever happens, happens," Kiffin said. "I have a great job, and any time there's any thinking any different, I just remind myself how many people would want to be the offensive coordinator for Nick Saban.
"Take out the head-coaching experience, period, at the three different places I was at. If somebody were to tell you that you were going to work for Pete Carroll and Nick Saban before you were 40 years old as their coordinators on some very successful teams when you're 25 years old, you'd take that in a second.