Raiders Blog and Q&A

News, observations and reader questions about the Oakland Raiders

January 8, 2008
More questions

Lane Kiffin vs. Al Davis. Lane Kiffin vs. Rob Ryan. Raiders fans vs. me.

The questions about the Raiders’ continue to pour in.

Question: Jason,
Is Kiffin on the way out? Brian Billick or Rob Ryan in as head coach? No, I do not use drugs or drink!
Pat, Lodi
Answer: Kiffin is out if he decides he wants to not coach next season, but I don’t’ think that will happen. If by some strange happenings Kiffin were gone, Ryan would be a logical replacement as Davis as shown a lot of faith I him. As for Billick, all I have to say is have you seen what he’d done with offenses in Baltimore? Didn’t think you’d want that to happen to JaMarcus Russell.

Question: How is that you, Peter King King, and the rest of the media know for sure that Kiffin doesn't want Ryan around? Can you please show me a quote from Kiffin saying this? All I remember Kiffin saying, is in the offseason, he will evaluate the players as well as the staff. Nowhere did he say he wants Ryan gone. All these claims are just speculation by an obviously biased media. This is getting to the point of irresponsible journalism.
Dave, Newport News, Va.

Answer: Dave, you’re right. I can’t show you one quote from Kiffin saying he doesn’t want Ryan around. That’s because Kiffin can’t say that because of what’s happening now. He would have looked stupid to say “I’m firing Rob Ryan” only to be told he couldn’t. But I also can’t show you a quote where Kiffin said he wanted Ryan back. And he was asked point blank if Ryan had coached his last game. If he’d said “no” that would end all the speculation.

And on my part there isn’t any bias against the Raiders. I like Kiffin. I like Ryan. I can’t speak for national writers such as King, but I can assure you most don’t have time to be biased against a team that has lost at least 11 games that last five seasons.

By the way, I’m still waiting for Kiffin to endorse Ryan as his guy. I’m not holding my breath, though. That would be irresponsible.

Question: Jason,
Is there a requirement, that the teams who take on the coaching responsibilities at the Senior Bowl, come equipped with a FULL staff?

And, is there any reason to speculate from the above that we are retaining Kiffin, but not Ryan? Since the Raiders released their statement in regards to Ryan on the 4th, the day before we were awarded the Senior Bowl.

Just seems too fishy that either Kiffin or Davis would be this heated as Adam Schefter has proclaimed, instead they are playing the waiting game in my opinion.
Chris, Las Crces, NM

Answer: A full staff is needed at the Senior Bowl. The staff is responsible for coaching an entire team so position coaches would be needed for that.

There’s talk Davis is holding out on compensation for Ryan (not likely he’d get any) and that Davis simply wouldn’t pay Ryan if he weren’t coaching for the Raiders (very likely).

There’s still a chance Ryan wouldn’t return. But the longer this drags out, the less likely his departure is.

Question: I don't understand your criticism of Kiffin and/or Davis making a statement about Ryan one way or the other. My understanding is that Kiffin and Davis have yet to have their coaching evaluation meeting. I would think it highly bad form, and bad for business to make a statement prior to that meeting. Also, as the media speculation regarding Ryan and the Jets and Lane and Monte Kiffin require tampering in order to be true, isn't it just possible that unjustifiably accusing Kiffin and/or Ryan of tampering might be a tad "irresponsible" and the basis for Taylor's complaint? Or is that just old school thinking, and no longer applicable to today's press?

Answer: The Raiders began meeting to evaluate the 2007 season last week. My only critique of the statement from the Raiders was that it wasn’t attributed to Kiffin or Davis, but from the “organization” through PR director Mike Taylor.

True, he is a team spokesman. But with so many questions about the situation that have gone unanswered, it merited something attributed to either Davis or Kiffin.

And you’re right about the tampering issue. Had the Jets contacted Ryan without the Raiders permission that would be tampering. It would be the same for the Raiders if they hadn’t waited until the end of the season to talk to Monte Kiffin.

I never wrote Kiffin planned to hire his father or that Ryan had a job lined up with the Jets. I mentioned there were reports along those lines, but also mentioned Monte Kiffin had a playoff game to coach and that the Jets hadn’t fired their defensive coordinator.

But don’t’ think these discussions don’t happen between coaches that believe they might lose their jobs and are looking for a new one.

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About Raiders Blog and Q&A

Matt Kawahara was born in Sacramento and attended McClatchy High School and UC Berkeley, where he wrote for the independent student paper The Daily Californian. He graduated from Cal in 2010 and started at The Sacramento Bee as a summer intern. He joined The Bee's sports staff in fall 2011.

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