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Pat Haden approves Kiffin's suspension of Baxter

Lane Kiffin’s suspension of freshman running back Dillon Baxter for violating team rules has gained the admiration of his boss, Athletic Director Pat Haden. Considering Kiffin’s past of generally not following the rules combined with USC’s tumultuous summer, getting off on the right foot under the new administration has been important.

Haden takes over at USC with a no-nonsense mentality. The first order of business was to strip USC of everything Reggie Bush. Jerseys, Heismans, bobble heads and more. Gone.

So when Baxter’s summer started going “up in smoke” the pressure was on to make a statement early.

“Dillon’s a high-profile athlete, like we’ve had some other ones around here, and he wasn’t doing things he was supposed to be doing,” said Haden. Baxter will continue to practice with the team, even though he is suspended for the first game of 2010 against Hawaii.

Kiffin and USC needed to show they have turned a corner in their less than reputable past. In Kiffin’s case, however, that past might come back to haunt him. The NCAA is expected to make a trip out west to talk with the former Vols coach about potential recruiting violations while at Tennessee. 

“It’s not good for the image, there’s no doubt about it, but we don’t know what’s going to come out of that,” Haden said in regards to a potential upcoming visit. “But these things seem to dog Lane, which is unfortunate because I do know that he’s gotten my message and I know he’s trying to do things right.”

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Respond to “Pat Haden approves Kiffin's suspension of Baxter”
  1. overratedgators says: Aug 13, 2010 6:52 AM

    Ben,
    I know you’re an intern, so you’re still new here. A tip: headlines don’t usually have periods after them.
    Just thought I’d bring that to your attention for future reference, since this is the second or third time I’ve seen you needlessly add one.

  2. Ben Kercheval says: Aug 13, 2010 9:09 AM

    @overratedgators: Thanks for the tip. I am aware that in headlines no period is needed. It was an honest oversight on my part. My right ring finger gets a little trigger-happy sometimes. It appears John has gone in and fixed it.

  3. Donna says: Aug 13, 2010 11:24 AM

    On to futher news:
    So far Kiffin is putting up the “tight ship” sign so that theres no chance of players horsing around with the law or the academic demands……….
    Stay tuned to see if the Fox can continue to guard the hen house!

  4. surlyguy says: Aug 13, 2010 6:11 PM

    BFD…allowing the “suspended” freshman to practice with the team while being held out of the first game against Hawaii is hardly worth noting… the only “statement” made here is that coach will be glad to take significant action as long as the significant action bears insignificant consequences.

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