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SEC Media Days 2023: Kiffin sounds off on NIL, transfer portal

Rule changes are surely coming in this unusual age of college football

NCAA Football: Texas Bowl-Texas Tech at Mississippi Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Ole Miss coach Lane Kiffin along with Quinshon Judkins, Cedric Johnson and Deantre Prince took on the media in the 2023 SEC Media Days event on Thursday.

The Cup wrote yesterday about how Kiffin would be must see TV, and he didn’t hold back as usual specifically hammering NIL and the transfer portal.

Lane Kiffin takes the big stage

Kiffin called the portal and NIL “a disaster that we’re in” and that its phenomenal players can get paid, but there’s major issues in creating a free agency with no real system that doesn’t exist anywhere in sports.

“What if you had this in other sports?” he asked. “What if every year those guys (Tom Brady, Aja Wilson, Lebron James) could opt into free agency twice a year? It’s just created a lot of issues... I’m not complaining about it because we take advantage of free agency, but I don’t think it’s good for college football.”

The head coach said he did not have all the answers for the NIL and portal era, but he did advocate for shorter transfer windows to shore up rosters for coaches. He said eventually changes will be made to the transfer rules.

“It’s a great time to be a kid or parent in college football,” he said. “You can leverage your program every window... you can get paid out of high school, go in get paid again and then grad transfer and get paid again.”

With all the payouts to the best players, Kiffin said players can’t be faulted for wanting to get the highest salary meaning the richest teams and boosters will likely get the best players. One reporter asked how Ole Miss ranks in terms of boosters providing resources in the SEC.

“I’m not about to rank boosters in the conference,” he said. “God I want to though.”

Kiffin is no stranger to SECMD and in his fourth appearance as the head coach at Ole Miss, he focused on the “good run” last year and not being able to keep his team focused down the stretch in his opening statement.

“I think down the stretch after the Alabama game, I didn’t do a good enough job figuring out how to have our guys play at a high level,” he said.

The Rebels were sitting at 8-1 with Bama at Vaught Hemingway Stadium with one drive hanging in the balance to go 9-1 that was unsuccessful. Ole Miss tumbled from there finishing the season 8-5 with a loss in the Texas Bowl.

Interesting enough with all the focus on NIL, transfer portal and boosters, none of the media even touched the full quarterback room in Oxford, the overhaul of his coaching staff or the overtures with Auburn prior to Hugh Freeze’s hiring.

Maybe, just maybe, Kiffin knows what he’s doing when it comes to SECMD.