The preferred Auburn football head coaching target before the program’s hiring of Hugh Freeze, Ole Miss head coach Lane Kiffin, was called a better recruiter than he is an actual coach by Mike Farrell Sports’ Kyle Golik.
“Kiffin’s presence on social media and ability to make personal connections makes him an excellent recruiter,” Golik wrote. “As the transfer portal became prevalent, Kiffin embraced it even creating the ‘Portal King’ crown that he later abdicated to Lincoln Riley. Kiffin consistently brings in Top 25 classes to Ole Miss, and during his time at Southern Cal and Tennessee, they were near the top in the country as well. What Kiffin hasn’t been able to do is get that signature win to turn the corner at Ole Miss.”
Golik is spot on. The Rebels’ top win, and only triumph over a ranked team, during the 2022 season was against Kentucky. In football, that’s typically a statement that indicates said season was a disaster — and given how Ole Miss’ season ended, with four straight losses including their bowl game, it’s a fair descriptor. Even in 2021, though, when Ole Miss won 10 games, their best win was over Arkansas; nothing to sniff at, but that’s somewhat a rite of passage for entry to the middle of the pack in the soon-to-be-desolved SEC West.
Auburn football can eradicate any remaining Lane Kiffin regret with Week 8 win
If Freeze gets Auburn football over Ole Miss and stops the Rebels before they start their first winning streak over the Tigers since the 1950s, all remaining Kiffin regret would be immediately eradicated.
Truthfully, Freeze outperforming Kiffin in the portal and on the high school trail should’ve done away with that regret. But if it didn’t, what happens in three and a half months’ time within the confines of Jordan-Hare Stadium should definitively do the trick.