Lane Kiffin has hired Kendal Briles to serve as his offensive coordinator, the new Florida Atlantic head coach told Pete Thamel and Kirk Herbstreit on Friday night.
FootballScoop first reported the two sides were in talks on Tuesday.
Kiffin has offered Briles the same chance Nick Saban offered him three years ago -- a chance to lay low, coach ball and rehabilitate his image through production on the field.
Briles, of course, arrives from Baylor, where he served on the Bears' staff dating back to 2008. He was Baylor's wide receivers coach from 2008-14 and offensive coordinator in 2015-16. His work helped revitalize Baylor's program through an offense that has seen its influence grow in college football commensurate with the Bears' rise. He was named a Broyles Award finalist in 2015.
Alongside his father Art Briles, Baylor transformed from a laughingstock to a juggernaut, with back-to-back Big 12 championships, a Heisman Trophy for Robert Griffin III, an entirely re-written offensive record book and a roster full of NFL draft picks. The Baylor offense, as it has become known, stretches defenses to the limits of time and space. In forcing opponents to defend truly sideline to sideline, running backs enjoy light boxes while wide receivers often face single coverage. Baylor ranked second nationally in rushing a year ago -- averaging 326.7 yards per game on 5.95 yards per carry -- and placed fourth in passing the season prior with a 365.9 yards per game average on 9.2 yards per attempt. The Bears led the nation in scoring in 2013, '14 and 15.
Pairing that offense with the athletes in Florida Atlantic's backyard, all under Kiffin's oversight, gives the Owls the chance to build a truly explosive offense in a conference overflowing with them.
Briles was served a 1-game suspension this fall for a recruiting violation but the NCAA ruled this week he nor Baylor will face additional penalties for the incident, stemming from impermissible contact with a recruit during spring recruiting. He was promoted to play-caller this off-season following the firing of his father due to a campus-wide sexual assault scandal, but Briles was never named in Pepper Hamilton documents or by any Baylor regents in the aftermath of the report.
As always, stay tuned to The Scoop for the latest.