On Wednesday, the NCAA charged Lane Kiffin and Tennessee with recruiting violations stemming from Kiffin’s rocky one-year stint in Knoxville. Two days later, Ed Orgeron became a target, as well, after an unauthorized workout with a recruit that occured while Orgeron was a coach with Tennessee came to light. The recruit in question, Brandon Willis, later committed to the Vols, only to back out when Kiffin left for USC.
ESPN had the report which details the allegations against Orgeron.
The recruiting calendar is clear and well understood in the coaching community. The evaluation rule, sometimes referred to as the “no-tryout” rule, is clear, too. Unlike some portions of the NCAA manual, there is no gray area regarding either potential violation. Orgeron, two sources said, conducted the workout of Willis at 6 a.m
It’s only a secondary violation, but with all the NCAA charges piling up for Kiffin, his coaches and Tennessee recently, it’s not a good sign. Kiffin developed a reputation for pushing the envelope while recruiting as he walked a fine line shaded in gray. Now at USC, with the NCAA watching, Kiffin and his staff can ill-afford any more slip-ups.
We’ll have more as it becomes available in our StoryStream.