A continued quarantine isn’t the only thing nagging Ole Miss coach Lane Kiffin. Despite opening the season with a convincing 43-24 win over Louisville, Kiffin is still miffed that two Rebels were ejected for targeting before halftime. Avoiding hits that can be deemed targeting is squarely atop the coaching staff’s list of corrections, though Kiffin wouldn’t mind a more reasonable approach from the game’s officials.
Due to a positive COVID test, Kiffin watched from home on Monday night as linebackers Mark Robinson and Lakia Henry were called for targeting and then ejected. He’s since reviewed the film and addressed technique with Rebels players and staff.
Exactly!!! Players don’t get slow mo replays to fix their mistakes. 🤫 https://t.co/e43vQs4ErA
— Lane Kiffin (@Lane_Kiffin) September 8, 2021
“We’re not stupid. We’re not going to get penalties,” Kiffin told reporters Wednesday. “Rules are what they are. You can disagree with them all you want, but they’re rules. You’ve got to change.”
Kiffin’s focus quickly turned to the officials. He’d like for the referees to have a better appreciation for the speed of the game: “The game isn’t in slow-motion. When people want to say ‘It’s easy to enforce the rule,’ guess what, the game’s not played in slow-motion or rewind. So when that happens in a split second and a guy lowers his helmet so the target moved, it’s a little difficult.”
He continued, noting that replay allows officials a mulligan, while no such second-chance is available for players: “When someone wants to say, ‘The rule has been in place forever, it should be really easy to coach,’ it ain’t in slow-motion and we don’t get instant replay to change our mistakes. The player when he screws up can’t go back with a missed assignment with instant replay to change it. ”
Ole Miss won’t have to wait long to put their targeting woes behind them. The Rebels host Austin Peay Saturday evening at 6:30 p.m.