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Regional & National

A peek inside the office, day of Vols' Lane Kiffin

April 3rd, 2009 12:00 am by Staff Report

According to ESPN, Lane Kiffin just bought a house in Knoxville, which is nice since he slept on his office couch -- again.


Half of his massive office looks as though government agents ransacked the place in search of secret launch codes. Piles of workout shirts spill out of a cardboard box on the floor. A piece of black luggage sits on its back. There are workout shorts. A pair of sneakers. An empty water bottle. Some work papers. An open cabinet or two. A small blanket (the one he used the night before) hangs on for dear life on a sofa cushion.


Kiffin isn't crazy about the office color (sort of modernistic goth black) and the formal part of the room is too regal for his tastes (the desk used by former UT coach Phillip Fulmer looks down on visitors). But the redecorating will come later. Right now, spring practices are going on. Later this week, Pittsburgh Steelers coach Mike Tomlin, only a few months removed from a Super Bowl victory, is scheduled to speak at a Saturday coaches clinic and then stick around for UT's scrimmage.


All things considered, this is sort of a light morning for Kiffin. He just got done meeting with a player (the player wants to quit). Then there's a podcast and a meeting with the athletic director. But before he walks over to the AD's office, Kiffin ducks inside the program's War Room.


Most of the assistant coaches are in there, including human Red Bull machine Ed Orgeron, who worked with Kiffin at Southern California and later became the head coach at Ole Miss. On a back wall is a huge map of the United States, in some cases complete with the names of specific state counties. Colored pins are placed in prime, target-rich recruiting areas where Tennessee has an interest. Lots and lots of pins are in Florida.


Kiffin is intense. His assistants are intense. And his players had better be intense. There are even "Loaf-Cams'' at workouts to monitor which players aren't working hard enough.


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