Lane Kiffin answers tough questions after 10-7 loss to Washington State

Posted by: Pete Roussel on Sunday September 08, 2013

To say the least, Saturday night was a tough one for Lane Kiffin.

In a 10-7 loss to Washington State, the USC offense accounted for a pick-6 and 193 total yards on 63 snaps.  The Trojans’ longest passing play was 8 yards.

Despite a sensational performance by Clancy Pendergast’s defense, USC didn’t have enough to overcome two turnovers, a missed field goal, a blocked field goal, and 3 of 13 on third-down opportunities.

Kiffin said afterwards, “It was a very disappointing day today in the passing game, obviously.  I’ve never heard of stats like today.  I think the long passing play was eight yards throughout the day, so that was very discouraging.  Obviously, it falls on me, so we’ll get it fixed.”

He added, “By the way we were playing defense, we should have won that game by not turning the ball over and giving them 7 points.”

Washington State's defensive coordinator Mike Breske decided to play a lot of “drop-8,” something that didn’t show up much in the scouting report.

Kiffin said, “When you’re not getting explosive plays, you’ve got to be consistent on every play.”

The USC official website noted the Trojans “finished the game under repeated chants of ‘Fire Kiffin!’ from an incensed fan base. It's not exactly a signature win for Leach, but it's the ugliest moment yet for the embattled Kiffin, who calls the Trojans' plays.”

In response to those chants, Kiffin said after the game, “You can’t worry about that.  It is what it is.  I think I heard those before the game started in warm-ups actually, so I’m getting used to it.”

When asked if this loss puts him on the hot seat, Kiffin said, “I don’t know all of that stuff.  I’m not thinking that way.  I know we’re 1-1 right now and we’ve got to go back and get ready for next week.”

He added, “When you don’t play well, of course it falls on the head coach.  That’s part of the job.  We obviously weren’t prepared well enough on offense and we didn’t make the two special teams’ plays when we needed to.”

USC hosts Boston College on Saturday.

Pete Roussel is a valuable resource for coaches, athletic directors, NFL front-office personnel, and college football enthusiasts. A former college football coach, Roussel shares insight on coaches 365 days a year and is recognized as the most trusted expert on coaching transactions. Follow @CoachingSearch on twitter and send your feedback to pete@coachingsearch.comtest