A messy divorce from USC apparently hasn’t soured former head coach Lane Kiffin’s attitude towards the Southern California powerhouse.
In a radio interview on Thursday, Kiffin picked the Trojans to upset No. 5 Stanford on Saturday night and to run the table in their last two regular season games at Colorado and the finale versus rival No. 13 UCLA, according to the L.A. Daily News.
As a guest on the ESPN broadcast, Kiffin singled out Saturday’s quarterback matchup of USC’s Cody Kessler versus Stanford’s Kevin Hogan, giving his former passer and top recruit the edge.
The sophomore Kessler has completed more than 80 percent of his passes in two straight games, tossing three touchdowns to one interception, but Hogan recorded 160 all-purpose yards and a touchdown in Stanford’s huge victory over Oregon last week.
Kiffin was also asked who he thought would fill his position full-time, and said interim coach Ed Orgeron deserves another chance to be a head coach. Orgeron has lifted the Trojans to a 4-1 record since taking over, and last led Ole Miss’s program to a 10-25 record from 2005 to 2007.
Kiffin also suggested areas he needs to improve if he does indeed coach at any level again.
“I gotta delegate,” he said. “I tried to do too much stuff. You just get stretched too much.”
The 38-year-old was dismissed by Trojans athletic director Pat Haden in September after the team started the season 2-3, capped by a nasty 62-41 meltdown at Arizona State. Even worse Kiffin was notified of his firing immediately after the team’s returning flight from Phoenix.
Many of the country’s top coaches have been linked to the USC job, like Texas A&M’s Kevin Sumlin and Washington’s Steve Sarkisian, but Kiffin himself apparently hasn’t garnered much attention at the college or pro levels.
In four seasons, USC went 28-15 and captured one Pac-12 title under Kiffin, and he also went 5-15 in one and a quarter seasons as the Oakland Raiders head coach.