Paul Finebaum and Lane Kiffin haven’t always seen eye-to-eye. In fact, there was one time Finebaum was sure Kiffin was going to punch him.

But, that was a long time ago. Now that Kiffin is the head coach at Ole Miss, Finebaum is a fan of the work Kiffin is doing with the Rebels.

On Monday, the SEC Network host joined “McElroy and Cubelic in the Morning” on WJOX and explained why he thinks Kiffin is incredibly underrated as a head coach:

“If you take away the sideshow of Lane Kiffin — all the drama, all the Twitter, all the fun stuff that we all laugh about and joke about — the guy is a terrific football coach,” Finebaum said. “He is incredibly underrated and if you took all of that away and Lane Kiffin was a serious, dour guy like some of these other folks who are in college football, we would probably rank him among the top coaches in the country.

“We look at his past and we hold that against him but you can’t hold against Lane Kiffin what he did 10 years ago at Southern Cal. You can’t hold against him the meltdown at Alabama or some of this other stuff. The guy is a fantastic play-caller. He’s obviously done a great job of organizing. You can win at Ole Miss. While there are some disadvantages because of the size, there are also some tremendous advantages because it is so attractive to go there. You go visit Ole Miss on a late April day and you’ll be hard-pressed to find any place better.”

Finebaum added that Kiffin is completely overshadowing Mike Leach in the state of Mississippi:

“What I find interesting is the talk of Ole Miss and what we don’t hear about Mike Leach,” Finebaum said. “When those guys came in together, you could have taken a bet that Leach would have been the bigger showman and Lane Kiffin has just wiped him out when it comes to Twitter hits and buzz and excitement.”

Kiffin just led the Rebels to their first-ever 10-win regular season. What does he have for an encore in 2022? We’ll find out come September!