Lane Kiffin Oct 15, 2022; Oxford, Mississippi, USA; Mississippi Rebels head coach Lane Kiffin walks off the field during a timeout during the first quarter of the game against the Auburn Tigers at Vaught-Hemingway Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Bush-USA TODAY Sports

WCBI Sports Director Jon Sokoloff appeared to have a massive story on Monday when he tweeted that Ole Miss head coach Lane Kiffin was planning to step down on Friday following the Egg Bowl and assume the role of head coach for the rival Auburn Tigers. As he put it in the tweet, “Lane to Auburn is happening.”

Kiffin disagreed and went to great lengths to call Sokoloff out over the report. First, he quote-tweeted it with “That’s news to me Jon,” a facepalm emoji, a “Nice sources,” and several other emojis.

Kiffin then took things up a notch by issuing his own “report” that Sokoloff was going to take a job at ABC/CBS affiliate WLOX in Biloxi.

Emboldened by the reaction he was getting or the truth that he was not considering the Auburn job, Kiffin kept going, tweeting about Sokoloff and calling him out over the report. He also found time to take some shots during his press conference after Ole Miss’s Egg Bowl loss.

“It was falsely reported by Jon (Sokoloff), who is now famous,” Kiffin said Thursday. “Congratulations. That you can just write whatever you want and I would do it, too, I think. You’re never held accountable and you get to become famous and maybe you’ll be right. Jon did it, so then I had to have a team meeting to say his article was wrong, which I’d love to know these unnamed sources from Jon.”

That said, while Ole Miss reportedly put a contract extension on the table and Kiffin told his players that he will return next season, it’s also been reported that he has yet to sign the extension. And given his track record, it would be silly to believe Lane 100% with anything he says in public, no matter how adamant he might seem.

However, it’s obvious to everyone here on Saturday that Sokoloff’s initial report is now incorrect. Kiffin did not leave Ole Miss for Auburn on Friday. According to Pete Thamel, it looks like the school is now targeting Liberty Flames coach Hugh Freeze.

Sokoloff took to Twitter on Saturday to admit his report ended up being untrue, but he maintains that he had multiple credible sources at the time and “information can and does change.”

“It appears congratulations are in order for Lane Kiffin who has chosen to stay at Ole Miss and not take the Auburn job,” said Sokoloff in a Notes app screenshot shared via Twitter.

“Our original reporting had Kiffin headed to Auburn. At the time of that report, multiple sources, independent of each other confirmed. Ole Miss denied the report and we published that. This has changed often. Our reports have included each update and also Coach Kiffin’s public frustrations with sources reports.

“It is the job to report based on solid information. That information can and does change and we have reported that as well. All the best to Lane in this next year.”

To be fair, the ever-changing nature of his report is backed up by ESPN’s Pete Thamel. Thamel said on Saturday that Kiffin’s candidacy “significantly cooled” because of “the pull of his family wanting to stay in Oxford,” implying that while Kiffin was bashing Sokoloff, he was also talking to Auburn behind the scenes.

If and when he signs the extension, Kiffin can finally put the issue to bed (or maybe not). But in the meantime, he’s more than happy to continue making Sokoloff the villain (even though it does seem like there was some smoke, even without the fire).

[Jon Sokoloff, Clarion Ledger]

About Sean Keeley

Along with writing for Awful Announcing and The Comeback, Sean is the Editorial Strategy Director for Comeback Media. Previously, he created the Syracuse blog Troy Nunes Is An Absolute Magician and wrote 'How To Grow An Orange: The Right Way to Brainwash Your Child Into Rooting for Syracuse.' He has also written non-Syracuse-related things for SB Nation, Curbed, and other outlets. He currently lives in Seattle where he is complaining about bagels. Send tips/comments/complaints to