- Kevin Gemmell, ESPN Staff Writer
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If coffee is for closers, then Lane Kiffin and David Shaw should get part-time jobs as baristas.
ESPN Insider Travis Haney examined the top 10 head coaches who can close the deal, and USC's Kiffin and Stanford's Shaw are on the list. Washington head coach Steve Sarkisian also got a nod in the honorable mention category.
Haney on Kiffin:
Kiffin turns some people off with his confidence, which some consider bordering on arrogant, but it's seen as a plus by some in the recruiting world. Players want to play for a coach who is outwardly confident. That certainly worked during Pete Carroll's time in L.A. and Kiffin has made no secret about wanting to replicate the program's recent success.
Haney on Shaw:
The idea of offering more than football is something Shaw typically hammers home with recruits. Even if the program is not nailing down a top-five class -- it's currently No. 38 -- the message of academics is a strong one.
USC's recruiting class currently ranks eighth by the folks at RecruitingNation. Stanford has five commits from the ESPN 300 list -- including ESPN 150 quarterback Ryan Burns, the No. 4 pocket passer in the country.
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