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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (Sept. 8, 1973)
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on, off field
By Dave McBride
Monte K if fin, as a coach, can be an
imposing figure on a football field. His
voice can be like a cannon, his arms like a
windmill, his entire personality like a man
possessed by a demon as he paces the
sidelines or roams the field. And his
involvement, whether it is a practice or a
game, is total.
Monte Kiffin, off the field, can be a
completely different person. He is
soft-spoken and thoughtful when he talks
and his motions are relaxed, almost lazy.
But his dedication to Nebraska football is
the same wherever he is, because Kiffin
lives the game.
He played the game well himself for
Nebraska and the Canadian Winnipeg
Blue Bombers, and has been coaching it
now for seven years at Nebraska. This
season, he is coordinator for Husker
The defensive coordinator, he
explained, takes some of the pressure off
head coach Tom Osborne and allows
Osborne to concentrate on the offense.
Watching Kiffin work on the practice
field, he is like a twelfth member of his
defensive platoon. The players, he said,
are his major responsibility.
"More than anything else, I want to
win for our football players," he said.
"When kids really work hard, I really
want to win for them. You have to be a
dedicated coach so you don't let them
"I think the most rewarding thing in
coaching is when a boy gets done playing
football for you and he really feels like
you've been a part of his four years in
college and respects you," he said.
He said the most difficult aspect of his
job is deciding who will play.
"It's hard when kids work realy hard
and then don't get to play on Saturday,"
he said, "but sometimes it's just not
possible. The only thing you can do is be
honest about it."
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