Barrett Sallee (CBSSports.com) — The Kliff Kingsbury era at USC is off to a bizarre start, and it could be over before the new offensive coordinator even coaches a game with the Trojans. The former Texas Tech coach has begun interviewing for NFL head coaching positions, according to Fox’s Jay Glazer. USC initially blocked Kingsbury from taking such interviews, but that is apparently no longer the case. NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reports that Kingsbury remains in his position with the Trojans, which have now opened the door for him to take interviews.
The NFL recently started enforcing an old rule that requires organizations to request permission from college athletic directors.
“If permission is denied, the NFL club should respect that decision just as it would respect a similar decision from another NFL club,” the rule states, according to ESPN’s report. “NFL clubs that fail to follow these protocols may be subject to disciplinary action for conduct detrimental to the League.”
Kingsbury was fired on Nov. 26, 2018, after six seasons as the coach of his alma mater. He went 35-40 as the coach of the Red Raiders, finishing under .500 during his final three seasons, including a 5-7 record during his last campaign in Lubbock, Texas.
Even though his tenure at Texas Tech came to an abrupt end, his pedigree as an air raid quarterback and coach is desirable in the rapidly-evolving NFL. Young, successful quarterbacks like Pat Mahomes with the Kansas City Chiefs and Jared Goff of the Los Angeles Rams will take the field this weekend in the NFL playoffs, and their success has many general managers clamoring for coaches who can identify talent and replicate their success.