Dec 31, 2012; El Paso, TX, USA; Southern California Trojans defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin before the 2012 Sun Bowl against the Georgia Tech Yellowjackets at Sun Bowl Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee/Image of Sport-USA TODAY Sports

Kiffin Failed at USC - Will He With The Cowboys?

Cowboys Mailbag

Q: Kiffin’s defense didn’t work at USC why would it work here?

In his first press conference in Dallas, Kiffin explained how complicated his defense is and that the amount of practice time allowed by the NCAA kept him from properly teaching it. In addition the limited practice also kept the players from properly executing it. Frankly I don’t buy that excuse if I’m USC because I feel the main role of a coach at any level is to know your team and any limitation that may exist.

I was very hard on Rob Ryan for this same thing. I truly believe he should have been fired because he didn’t know the limitations. He overestimated his players’ ability to learn and execute his schemes and he didn’t adapt or simplify based on limited practice time available.

Likewise Kiffin should have known the limitations he faced while at USC and altered his schemes to fit the situation. Strangely enough, altering his schemes to play to his players strengths is one of his best qualities – he just didn’t do it at USC. This week and next I plan to dive into Kiffin’s defense deeper so at this point I’ll just say that it’s more complicated than one might imagine.

At the end of the day, the Cowboys must hope that they get the Kiffin everyone knows and loves and not the guy who coached at USC.


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Tags: Dallas Cowboys Monte Kiffin Rob Ryan

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