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Report: Vikings have interest in Lane Kiffin for head coaching position

Hoo boy

Allstate Sugar Bowl - Baylor v Ole Miss Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images

GA Skol linked to something about this in the Open Thread today, but this is something that probably requires its own story.

Yesterday, Brad Spielberger from Pro Football Focus put a rather interesting tweet out centered around a name that I don’t believe had come up very much in the Minnesota Vikings’ coaching search.

Spielberger seems to be suggesting that the Vikings are interested in Lane Kiffin. My first reaction probably sounded a lot like a Wilhelm Scream, but if there’s enough steam out there, it’s worth examining.

Kiffin’s career has been. . .interesting. Yeah, let’s go with interesting. Even though it seems like he’s been around forever, he’s still just 46 years old. After taking on a couple of less prominent roles, he caught on at Southern Cal in 2001 and eventually rose to the offensive coordinator job, a role he held in 2005 and 2006. He managed to parlay that into the head coaching job with the Oakland Raiders, getting hired by Al Davis in 2007 at the age of 31, making him the youngest head coach in Raiders history. . .one year younger than John Madden.

He lasted two years with the Raiders and was fired by Davis just four games into the 2008 season after the relationship between Kiffin and Davis went way south. Davis had reportedly tried to get Kiffin to resign, but Kiffin refused because that would force him to forfeit the remaining money on his contract. The whole thing wound up getting dragged in front of an arbitrator who wound up ruling in favor of the Raiders. Kiffin ended his abbreviated Raiders’ tenure with a record of 5-15.

Kiffin was then hired as the head coach at the University of Tennessee, a job he held for just one season before he departed to take the same job back at Southern Cal. He spent four seasons as the Trojans’ head coach before being fired and wound up as Nick Saban’s offensive coordinator at Alabama for three seasons. He then got another head coaching job at Florida Atlantic in 2017, and left that job after three seasons to become the head coach at Ole Miss, where he is today.

Kiffin does have some ties to the Vikings. His father, the legendary Monte Kiffin, was a coach with the Vikings for eight years, including serving as the defensive coordinator in Jerry Burns’ final season in 1991. Of course, he would go on to have much greater success with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, including serving as their defensive coordinator in their first Super Bowl-winning season in 2002.

Now, I’m not sure how realistic a possibility this is. . .and, as we pointed out in our Doug Pederson story, it’s largely going to depend on who the team hires as their general manager.

But what do we think, folks? Does the thought of Lane Kiffin as the next Vikings’ head coach do anything for you?