USC ALUMNI NEWS

Former USC Football Head Coach goes off on NIL, blows up about "legalized cheating"

Evan Desai
Lane Kiffin, USC Football, USC Trojans
Lane Kiffin, USC Football, USC Trojans / Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports
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Ex-USC Football Head Coach Lane Kiffin had quite a bit to get off his chest about players being allowed to make money off of their name, image, and likeness (NIL) at SEC media day. Kiffin said A LOT, starting with concerns about boosters' involvement in the NIL picture:

"If you have boosters deciding who they’re going to pay to come play and the coach isn’t involved in it, how does that work? They just pick who they want and tell you who to play? And when they don’t play, how is that going to work?"

Lane Kiffin, ex-USC Football Head Coach

First, it's important to bring up that not every school is going to "have boosters deciding who they're going to pay to come play." USC, for instance, does not have an NIL collective. They don't offer that type of assistance for recruits.

USC players can make NIL money like anyone else, but the school doesn't have a collective to work with players and set them up to make money. However, even for programs with collectives in place, these concerns from Kiffin are a bit unnecessary. "When they don't play," it will not be a problem that the coach has to deal with.

If they don't play, they're not good enough to play. The money will already be in the players' pockets either way, so the coach doesn't need to stress about that. The worst case scenario is that the players that don't play have a tough time getting NIL deals in the future, which is not the coach's problem. The coach doesn't have to deal with that.

Addressing other issues that ex-USC Football Head Coach Lane Kiffin had about NIL:

Former USC Football OC/HC and current Ole Miss HC Lane Kiffin compared today's college football to a professional sport with no salary cap:

"It’s like a payroll in baseball, what teams win over a long period of time? Teams that have high payrolls and can pay players a lot. So we’re in a situation not any different than that. I’m sure other people have said it, I said it say one, you legalized cheating so get ready for the people that have the most money to get the best players and there you have it."

Lane Kiffin, ex-USC Football Head Coach

Well, it's odd to complain about this now, when many ex-college football players have come out and spoken about how players in Kiffin's current conference have been actually getting illegally paid for decades now.

In fact, Jimbo Fisher recently came out and torched Nick Saban (Kiffin's former SEC employer) for his checkered past in that department. Also, Kiffin's comparison is a false comparison, as schools themselves can't offer NIL money--like baseball teams themselves offer players contracts. NIL deals come from outside businesses.

"And as far as a general manager to manage that, we aren’t allowed in the current system to manage what they make. We’re not there yet and I don’t know that we ever will be, that’s just what I said it should be because that’s what any other professional sports, which is what we are now, does."

Lane Kiffin, ex-USC Football Head Coach

College football is a professional sport "now?" College football has been a massive money-maker in this country for ages, but now that the players who make it all possible can make money directly off of THEIR names, images, and likenesses, it's a problem?

These schools have been benefitting off of the services that these players have been making since college football has been around. It's NOW that the players have a chance to make money off of their direct contributions that it's "professional sports." The coaches, though, are fine to make whatever apparently.

“This was not thought out, at all, and has created a massive set of issues, which I think when most people thought about it from a coaches’ standpoint, could’ve predicted this was gonna happen,” said Kiffin.

Players making money specifically off of THEIR OWN literal names, images, and likenesses is not "a massive set of issues." Players are why college football is running. They deserve what they directly earn off of their own likeness.

Next. 3 Big Ten matchups USC fans will probably travel to. dark

Kiffin was a terrific Offensive Coordinator for USC back when he held that position, but his recent comments on NIL are disappointing.

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