KNOXVILLE, Tenn. -- Tennessee coach Lane Kiffin is doing his best not to comment about Southeastern Conference officials or the reprimand he received from league commissioner Mike Slive.
"I'm not gonna get into it. I'm excited about this matchup versus South Carolina. As hard as it is for me to do, I'm not gonna do that. I'd love to," Kiffin said Tuesday when asked about his second reprimand as Volunteers coach.
Kiffin will face additional penalties or a suspension if Slive finds cause to reprimand him a third time this year, according to the letter sent Monday.
On Sunday, Kiffin questioned why officials failed to penalize Alabama's Terrence Cody for unsportsmanlike conduct when the defensive lineman removed and threw his helmet after blocking a field goal on the last play of Alabama's 12-10 victory in Tuscaloosa.
He also said he decided to let the clock run down instead of trying to run another play before the kick because he was concerned about the officiating.
"You run another play and you throw an interception or they throw another flag on us -- I wasn't going to let the refs lose the game for us there and some magical flag appear," Kiffin said Sunday.
Kiffin was also reprimanded in February after he accused Florida coach Urban Meyer of violating NCAA recruiting rules.
Tennessee senior defensive tackle Wes Brown said knowing Kiffin isn't afraid to say what he thinks helps give the Vols (3-4, 1-3) confidence. Tennessee hosts South Carolina on Saturday.
"When you have a coach that goes to bat for you and really instills confidence in you -- you really believe in what he says," Brown said.
Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press
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