Lane Kiffin explains context of his ‘popcorn’ quote, says he contacted reporter to let her know it wasn’t on purpose
OXFORD, Miss. — Even before the clock clicked down to all zeros in Ole Miss’ 42-21 loss to No. 1 Alabama Saturday, head coach Lane Kiffin realized he’d probably made a mistake in the on-field, pregame interview.
Literally only seconds before his team took the field, Coach Kiffin was interviewed by CBS reporter Jamie Erdahl and he ended the conversation by telling viewers to “get your popcorn ready,” as NFL Hall of Famer Terrell Owens once said.
But as soon as he said it, Kiffin had second thoughts.
“As you guys know, I tell it like it is–good and bad. That was not premeditated,” he explained in his weekly press conference Monday. “Sometimes you get caught up in emotions. I just heard someone yelling in the locker room, someone saying that,” he added.
“I don’t even know why it came out. I actually said to (offensive coordinator Jeff) Lebby, I got on the headset and said, ‘I just said something really stupid. You better score a lot of points.’“
Coach Kiffin on his ‘popcorn’ comment
The Rebels’ head coach also went on to add that he didn’t know that was the last question of the interview with Erdahl as he had just heard his assistant coaches calling for the kickoff return team.
“And I didn’t realize it was the last question, either. They were calling for kickoff return….I literally didn’t know there was another question. I found out afterward that looked rude, which it did.“
Kiffin made sure to contact the reporter so would know it was not his intent to be rude.
“I contacted Jamie and made sure she knew that was not on purpose. That was not done on purpose at all. It looked like it, though. I saw it.“
Coach Kiffin on contacted the reporter
Kiffin and his dry wit were alive and well in the halftime locker room. With his team held scoreless in the first half and trailing, 28-0, he says he remarked to Coach Lebby, “It looks like we didn’t plug the microwave in, Buddy.”
Ole Miss hosts Arkansas at Vaught-Hemingway this Saturday at 11:00 a.m.
Evelyn has covered sports for over two decades, beginning her journalism career as a sports writer for a newspaper in Austin, Texas. She attended Texas A&M and majored in English. Evelyn’s love for Ole Miss began when her daughter Katie attended the university on a volleyball scholarship. Evelyn created the Rebel Walk in 2013 and has served as publisher and managing editor since its inception.