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Monte Kiffin says he wasn't pushed out

Regardless of how it was done, Monte is gone

Stephen Dunn

I know it is pointless to try and dissect the resignation of Monte Kiffin.

The fact is he had to go, the method is unimportant. I'm sure Lane had a bit of a dilemma here, but Monte can ride off into the sunset with his NFL legacy and bank account firmly intact.

Lane on the other hand has a long way to go to turn is his "legacy" into a positive one. I'm sure Monte saw this and found a way to exit gracefully.

The speculation of Pat Haden forcing Lane to make a change or if Lane told Monte he had to go really is unimportant...that is why I find Monte trying to explain it interesting.

Monte Kiffin did his best to prevent any family dinner-table acrimony during this holiday season.

Rather than put his son, who also happens to be his boss, in a potentially awkward situation, Kiffin chose to resign Thursday night as USC's assistant head coach. Coach Lane Kiffin had said he would wait until the end of the season to evaluate his staff, but Monte Kiffin no doubt saw where things were headed.

''It was easy for me to do,'' Monte Kiffin said Friday in a radio interview on KSPN-710. ''I wasn't going to do that (and say), 'OK, kid, you want to fire me? Then step up and be a man and fire me.'''

Monte Kiffin said he had not been pressured to resign – ''The head coach did not put me under fire, nor did (athletic director) Pat Haden or anybody like that'' – but he also wasn't tone-deaf to the widespread criticism he received.

Of course it was easy...everyone was screaming for Monte's head. His defense just isn't suited for the college game and it was clear USC's defense just wasn't coached up. It has been rumored that Joe Barry left for the NFL because of Monte's pigheadedness. The other rumor is that Ed O. was growing tired of Monte not listening to his assistants.

At this point I don't care. I just want the team to get better. It is frustrating to see Junior turn his team around across town after one year and look over on our sidelines and see Kiffin regress or not progress after three years...especially when we it is clear USC has much better talent.

The speculation has already begun as to who Lane will hire. It is pretty clear that O won't leave if he isn't named DC.

So, lets have some fun...who do want Kiffin to hire? Who do you think Kiffin will hire? Why should Kiffin hire that person?

Leave your thoughts and predictions in the comments.