NFL teams may be interested in Kliff Kingsbury, but USC doesn't feel like having its new offensive coordinator interview for other jobs. That according ESPN's Adam Schefter, who reports that the New York Jets and Arizona Cardinals have requested to interview Kingsbury only to have their advances rebuffed by USC to this point.
NFL rules dictate that teams must seek permission from athletic directors before interviewing college coaches.
From Schefter's report:
Not [receiving permission] would be considered "conduct detrimental" and the NFL then could dock draft picks from teams, sources said.
"If permission is denied, the NFL club should respect that decision just as it would respect a similar decision from another NFL club," the rule states in part. "NFL clubs that fail to follow these protocols may be subject to disciplinary action for conduct detrimental to the League."
All hope may not be lost for the Jets, Cardinals or any other NFL organization that may be interested in Kingsbury's head coaching services. According to Pro Football Talk, in the wake of USC and athletic director Lynn Swann halting pro teams from talking to its new offensive coordinator, the possibility remains that Kingsbury could resign from his post. Such an abrupt move would, of course, free the former Texas Tech coach up to explore the NFL opportunities. Per Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk, Kingsbury's deal with the Trojans carries with it a "very low buyout" that he could simply pay off and walk away from his new duties.
Kingsbury was hired as USC's offensive coordinator in December 2018 after he was fired at Texas Tech. The Trojans are hoping Kingsbury can revitalize an offense that finished 91st nationally last season with an average of 26.1 points per game and 63rd nationally with 5.78 yards per play.
Though Kingsbury posted a 35-40 record in six seasons at Texas Tech, NFL teams are interested due to his offensive acumen.
Before his tenure with the Red Raiders, the former Texas Tech quarterback spent three seasons as an offensive coordinator on Kevin Sumlin's staffs at Houston and Texas A&M. In 2012, he helped Johnny Manziel win a Heisman Trophy with the Aggies.