Enter the Warzone, genuinely fake news.
▪ In case you were wondering and/or speculating, Lane Kiffin did express interest in becoming head football coach at his alma mater.
It’s just that Fresno State had significantly more interest in Jeff Tedford from the outset.
▪ Kiffin and Fresno State athletic director Jim Bartko spoke about the Bulldogs opening, per sources, though it’s unclear how far those talks progressed. What’s clear is that Bartko preferred Tedford, who was the pick of many donors and would give him a longer-term commitment.
▪ The most eyebrow-raising aspect of Kiffin becoming the new head coach of Florida Atlantic is his reported $1 million annual salary. Because there was an assumption (including by yours truly) he would demand significantly more.
Which leads to the strong suspicion Fresno State overshot the market (again) by giving Tedford five years at $7.9 million.
▪ Hiring Tedford a month ago allowed the Bulldogs to get a head start in recruiting. The new coaching staff has done precisely that, getting five more oral commitments over the weekend from junior college players.
▪ Three of the five commits play defensive back, and two of them (Ventura College’s Vosean Crumbie and Arizona Western’s Matthew Boateng) were teammates at powerhouse IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla.
Secondary is certainly a huge area of need. Then again, where isn’t?
▪ Now 1-12, the 49ers certainly must fire their general manager and should probably fire their head coach. It’s just unfortunate you can’t fire the owner.
▪ Of the 49ers’ 12-game losing streak Chip Kelly says, “It’s not like we’re getting taken to the woodshed.”
San Francisco’s average margin of defeat is 14.2 points, so that’s a hatchet job of the truth.
14.2 points49ers’ average margin of defeat during their 12-game losing streak
▪ The 49ers ought to bring back Jim Tomsula. Five wins are a whole lot better than one, and they’re still paying him through 2018.
▪ Days after giving him a two-year contract extension, the Rams fired longtime coach Jeff Fisher.
Someone must have changed their mind.
▪ Will be interesting to see if Stan Kroenke, the Rams’ absurdly wealthy owner, throws an absurdly large number at Jim Harbaugh.
Say, $15 million per year?
▪ Fresno State guard Jahmel “I Can See Clearly Now” Taylor is shooting 60.8 percent on 3-pointers, second in the nation.
Prescription lenses for everyone!
▪ Despite Jaron Hopkins’ escalating assist totals, the junior is playing out of position at point guard. And the only person who can change that between now and March is William McDowell-White.
▪ In the four games since assistant coach Ron Adams noticed a lean in Draymond Green’s outside shot, the Warriors power forward is 12 of 20 from beyond the arc.
Just in case you thought the Fresno Athletic Hall of Famer only coached defense …
He came behind me, I was shooting and he literally put his hand in my back.
Draymond Green, on Ron Adams
▪ Good to see the Dodgers scratch some big checks for key pieces Kenley Jansen and Justin Turner. When you’re Richie Rich, no use pretending you’re Oliver Twist.
▪ What price did the Giants pay to sign closer Mark Melancon?
Besides four years and $62 million, the cost of having Jarrett Parker and Mac Williamson play every day in left field.
▪ For no particular reason: Calais Campbell
▪ Another checkmate from chess champion Garry Kasparov, on Twitter, “There’s a Russian word for ‘fake news.’ It’s ‘news.’ ”
▪ Two Louisville football players and a female student were reportedly shot early Sunday morning at a party celebrating Lamar Jackson’s Heisman Trophy victory.
Which only goes to show there’s no statue of limitations for thuggery.