Recruiting saving Kiffin

So what is it about embattled USC coach Lane Kiffin that has Trojans athletic director Pat Haden so willing to support him "150 percent," thus putting his own pristine reputation on the line?

Well, if Kiffin does have one very attractive component to his controversial game, it's that the Trojans' third-year coach is universally accepted as one of the nation's premier recruiters.

Let's put it this way: Kiffin could sell ice cubes to Eskimos and probably talk a wolf off a truck full of lambs. Some might, however, contend that behind Kiffin's angelic face resides college football's version of Eddie Haskell, the two-faced, behind-your-back teenage icon from the old Leave it to Beaver series.

It's common knowledge that the current USC 2013 recruiting class, low in numbers due to the NCAA sanctions yet high in quality, is generally recognized as the best in the land. All but one commit is in the ESPN 300.