Lane Kiffin, with his poor exit from Tennessee and tumultuous career at Southern Cal, has been as easy target for criticism over the last couple of years.
The 39-year-old, now the offensive coordinator at Alabama, made his coaching debut with the Crimson Tide this afternoon, helping lead Nick Saban’s squad to a 33-23 victory against West Virginia in Atlanta.
Kiffin’s offense, sporting a first-year starter at quarterback in Blake Sims, totaled 538 yards–250 through the air and 288 on the ground. Following the contest, Saban praised Kiffin’s play calling.
Kiffin called ‘fantastic’ game, Saban said. “The guy’s a really good coach, now. Ya’ll need to fess up to that.”
— Jeremy Fowler (@JFowlerCBS) August 31, 2014
As mind-numbing as all this TV attn that Lane Kiffin gets is, not a bad day when #Bama puts up 527 yds & goes 9-14 on 3rd down with a new QB
— Bruce Feldman (@BruceFeldmanCFB) August 30, 2014
Kiffin’s history will probably always make him an object of attack from various media members and fans, but his performance today was deserving of admiration. Racking up more than 500 yards of offense with a new starter at quarterback is not easy, despite Alabama possessing NFL talent at nearly every position.
Alabama hosts Florida Atlantic Sept. 6.