‘Is this what we want the game to become?’

Shorter Nick Saban:  A smash-mouth LSU offense having success against my defense totally proves that you people in the media don’t understand my whine about playing no-huddle offenses.


Filed under Nick Saban Rules

61 responses to “‘Is this what we want the game to become?’

  1. HVL Dawg

    “Not trying to make the other guy play so fast he can’t even get where he’s supposed to be.”

    Saban is soft.

  2. Irishdawg

    Holy crap. Whatever advantages running a no huddle gives an offense is pretty slim compared to consistenly oversigning to the point your defense can sub more than anyone else in football. Want to talk about that, Nicky?

    • Macallanlover

      Exactly Irish, oversigning to provide “tryouts” may not be illegal in a technical sense but it is immoral in CFB. The discarded kids have dreams and hopes too. Anyone that doesn’t think signing 125 recruits to get the best 85 isn’t a huge advantage to signing 85 and taking what you get is simply blind. Spurrier sounded goofy saying that Bama could beat some NFL teams but Bama using pro-like methods of selecting players and cutting others to get to the allowed roster size may have confused the old boy.

      • Bryant Denny

        Mac – it’s hasn’t been illegal and it’s not necessarily immoral.

        I agree that it would be unethical if coaches flat out lied to recruits and / or players, but if a player knows straight up, consider him forewarned. Right?

        • Mayor of Dawgtown

          After a lot of consideration I have adjusted my thinking on this subject. While I still believe that Saban overdoes it, I now believe that no signee has the right to expect a scholarship in perpetuity if he does not perform. How long would you keep your job if you did it badly? Wouldn’t your boss get rid of you and hire someone else? What are we teaching the players about life if they are told by word or action that they can underperform yet still keep the free ride? IMHO that is the very problem that the team had in 2010–that attitude. It’s like a virus, it spreads. And to his credit, CMR got rid of the worst of the bad attitudes from that team. I wouldn’t do like Saban and have quotas but I think for damn sure if someone isn’t pulling his own weight he should be shown the door and his scholarship given to someone who will.

          • South FL Dawg

            If I may interject….maybe they should let players transfer more liberally too. Of course that’s a Pandora’s Box but point is it’s not exactly like an employee that can leave at any time. Not that I disagree with dismissing players who aren’t making the effort, but some others are good kids who don’t pan out through no fault of their own. It seems there should be a place for them if they want to finish their degree from State U. This is where I’m at anyways.

        • Macallanlover

          BD, I acknowledge the legality right of way but feel it is being misued by Saban, and a few others, to gain a competitive advantage. No issue with behavior DQs as long as the punishments are consistently applied, and certainly no problem with true medical problems. The elephant in the room is almost all D1 schools do not use schollys this way, and we all have similar issues. The fact some leagues have set mandatory linits while others (UGA, Florida) have self-disciplined themselves. I don’t really understand the NCAA not addressing this since it clearly is outside the intent of the 85 scholarship limit they set decades ago. But you have to see the huge advantage it gives the schools who aggressively push the envelope, everyone in America does, so why don’t the other schools follow suit? Because it just isn’t right.

          I would love to see a +3 “sign to” limit to account for some attrition, with an adjustment the following year to again sign to a level of no more than a total of 88 on NSD. If circumstances drop you below the 85 number in some years, you can correct the next year (UGA will do this in February. although to the max of 85.) But I do feel all schools should operate by the same fixed number, whatever that agreed upon number is. You canno thave a playoff in two years unless the rules for the contenders are the same.

          • Macallanlover

            Completing that thought in paragraph 1, 4th sentence: “have self-disciplined themselves shows there is something to oversigning that they find intolerable. It has to be significantly unacceptable for them to not follow suit and get the same benefits. It isn’t financial constraints.

  3. Sneaky Short

    Shorter Nick Saban? Any shorter and he will be in charge of the lollipop guild.

  4. David

    I’d wager if you ask Nick Saban, nobody in the media has interpreted anything he’s ever said properly.

    Off topic, but I live in Savannah and if I never see another John Barrow or Lee Anderson commercial in my life it will be too soon. You folks in the Coastal Empire feel my pain I know. Thank god it’s election day.

    • Ginny

      Right there with you. The John Barrow commercials especially make me want to vomit. So glad we won’t have to see them anymore.

  5. God, what a prick. Saban’s just a bully. He’s a great football coach, but I’ve got zero respect for the man because of the way he treats the media and the people around him.

    This guy had every right to question you, Nick. And if you had even half as much brain capacity for things other than football as you have coaching acumen, you’d be able to tell that the reporter’s theory is embedded in the question. He thinks that you bitched and whined so much about the Ole Miss no-huddle (almost certainly in an effort to make it look like they only piled up stats on your defense because they were somehow playing unfair) that you shook the confidence of your defensive team.

    I don’t know if Georgia’s the team to do it, but I would really, really enjoy watching someone end this jagoff’s season. I have no problem with Alabama, I have no problem with Alabama fans. But I can’t stand Saban. At least Spurrier is entertaining. At least Spurrier appears to not be miserable every second of every day.

    • HobnailedBoots

      I hate everything about Alabama.

      • Bryant Denny

        Man, that’s hard right there.

        • BD, you’re the good guy of Tide Nation. It’s too bad some of your fellow fans are absolutely insufferable.

          • gastr1

            We all have those people. I have a lot better reasons for not liking Alabama than its fans, and the most recent ones (they go back quite a ways) are related to NIck Saban being a total asshole.

            • Bryant Denny

              Funny thing is, I actually loved the dude when he was at LSU. Maybe my standards are too low.

              • gastr1

                It should be stated again, you’ve always been an excellent representative of your fanbase, BD. You’re an asset to the GTP community.

          • Bryant Denny

            Eh not really. I’ve got some pretty awful references.🙂

            • uga70

              BD, have you ever talked to a Michigan State alum or fan? No love lost there from those folks. Although I think they’re jealous that he left MSU with no championships but was and has been very successful at LSU and Bama.

              • Bryant Denny

                I haven’t run into one since he’s been here.

                I’ve read some stories about his departure from MSU to LSU. I think he was young and still learning up through his first couple of years at LSU. At LSU, they gave him full control to do whatever he wanted to build a winner and it worked. I think at Alabama he’s continued to work his plan.

                It’s interesting to think about his development as a coach in relation to some school trying to find and hire the next Saban.

  6. AusDawg85

    He’s right. You don’t see that in the pros. It’s not like the Falcons went to the line quickly and caught the Cowboys completely unprepare….uh, wait.

  7. Mayor of Dawgtown

    I rarely agree with Nick Saban on anything but Saban’s right about the no-huddle. Taken to the extreme it’s really just a cheap trick. The O freezes the D into having certain players on the field. Unable to substitute, the D becomes exhausted and the O scores at will EVEN IF THE D HAS SUPERIOR PLAYERS. I’ve seen Oregon play about 10 times in the last couple of years and that is exactly what the Ducks do. When Oregon plays a team that can’t stop it, the Ducks run up the score to ridiculous numbers because the other team’s D is gassed. And, yes, there IS a greater threat of injury when players are exhausted and cannot get off the field. So Saban’s rhetorical question was an apt one: “Is this what we want college football to become?” My answer to that question would be: “No.”

    • Bryant Denny

      They Mayor gets it.

      Where can I vote for you today?


      • Mayor of Dawgtown

        You’ll have to show up in person at Dawgtown City Hall. Go by the cemetery first and pick out a name off a headstone. We don’t require no stinkin’ IDs.

    • HobnailedBoots

      This entire paragraph is BS, mayor. No offense. But the defense gets to sub whenever the offense subs, so the offensive players are getting the same amount of work that the defense is. If the defense is gassed, then they should condition better.

      • Mayor of Dawgtown

        Every study I have ever seen on the subject shows that the D players expend more energy than O players do–a lot more. This is particularly true of offenses that make the D cover the entire field.

        • Doogie

          The D does use more energy, but the game is only 60 minutes, broken into 4 quarters. i agree with you that we don’t want the game to be a cheap trick, but I’m not sold on allowing defensive substitutions if the offense doesn’t get one.

          • W Cobb Dawg

            You didn’t mention delays due to commercials, officials conferences, etc. Plus, I’m against just about anything that would make the game slower than it is, because it gives idiotic announcers more time to incessantly babble.

      • Bryant Denny

        It’s not just about subs.

        If the offense runs to the line and gets set – forcing the defense to set up – and then the offense gets out of their stance and turns to the sideline for another play, that’s not old man football.

        • Macallanlover

          I agree, don’t like it at all and wish UGA didn’t use it. If you want to run a quick play, get set and go. Maybe they need to put a time limit on how long you have from the time your players are set. Neither offensive or defensive players should have to hold their stance more than 10-12 seconds.

        • HobnailedBoots

          Your complaints are unfounded. The defense has an advantage over the offense in that they don’t have to come set and can move around before the snap, whereas the offense has to be set prior to the snap.

          By your logic, this is unfair and not old man football.

          • Bryant Denny

            Defenses have always been able to move. Offenses also have the ability to send players in motion.

            My point is that to get set (e.g. offensive linemen) and then move around is unfair. Maybe I’m just old.

    • Dubyadee

      If that’s what football becomes–ability to execute at a very fast pace–I’m absolutely okay with it as long as the defense is given AMPLE time to sub when the offense does. Refs do a very poor job of handling this IMO.

      I’d also note that this a big part of football for much of the pre-war period–getting the play off before the defense could line up correctly, and wearing them out by playing quickly. Oh, and they rarely subbed players back then.

    • Dubyadee

      I don’t want to oversimplify what you are saying, but if college football games were always won by the team with the superior players, the games would pretty much suck.

      • Bryant Denny

        That’s never been the case, except for the occasional insane winning streak.

        Emotion and “decided schematic advantages” have always been huge parts of the game and in many cases offset huge talent advantages.

  8. Bryant Denny

    Y’all should know better than to question Saban when he’s using his Jedi mind tricks.

    Since I’m not a Jedi, but can interpret Jedi mind trick techniques, I’ll offer this: He rambled on related to the spread at the previous press conference and used this particular question to clean things up a bit. It’s a similar trick I use with my kids – dad is never wrong, and if you question me I will talk long enough until I convince myself I’m right.

    BUT, he did ramble on long enough to pose a legitimate question – in both pressers – is this what you want the game to become? The game seems to be turning on racing to the line and beating your opponent to the snap vs. old man football.

    Have a good day Dawgs,


    • Gravidy

      I prefer Old Man Football myself, so I agree with him in principle. But my question is this: Saban obviously doesn’t like hurry-up offenses, so why lie? Why backtrack and deny the obvious? It’s not like anyone in the Bamasphere is going to stop worshipping him. 🙂

    • Dubyadee

      Agree that seems a valid question, though I’m not sure why anyone would answer in the negative unless they just like the tradition of plays being forty seconds apart.

      Of course, as I mentioned above, moving too quickly for the defense to get set and/or catch their breath, was a common strategy way back when.

      I haven’t seen the presser footage and don’t generally trust the writers to convey the spirit/tenor of what is said, but isn’t it kind of silly for a big-time coach to ask some local journalist a question? Especially when the answer is so obvious? Seems like he was just trying to be a dick.

  9. Otto

    If football turns into what we’re saw at Oregon/USC this past weekend and quite a few BigXII games, I’m not interested. I no longer watch the NFL thanks to their rules limiting defenses/protection rules.

    Bama/LSU has produced some great games as I believe Barnhart said everyone was on the edge of their seat because the next play could be the one that decides the game.

  10. Cojones

    If a team is good enough and disciplined enough, why not use all the tools at hand to win? If you know your opponent’s going to speed up the game on O, you can have your D prepared and disciplined to the play as well as their O. Maybe that’s the only game that negates Bama’s ability to replace with fresh players that others don’t have because they don’t recruit like you do.

    Saban’s gripe is not a shot at whether there is something wrong with playing fast, he just doesn’t like it because coaches can come up with problem solving as fast as Saban can create them. If the O can rip off 8 plays instead of 6 in the same time allotment, what does that do except negate the free and refreshing break for your players that you have recruited extra for the occasion. Making Saban play tired is playing his game of making you tired by substituting players. He doesn’t like it when the other shoe fits what he is doing to get an advantage.

    He deserves no remorse nor do I see the value of Sabin’s remarks. Just play cfb, you jugheads.

  11. Always Someone Else's Fault

    Forget Oregon and Alabama for the moment. Both are winning their games right now for the same reason – they have superior talent. Scheme just dictates margin of victory.

    The offensive explosion in college and the pros has turned too many games below Top 10 Match-ups into a “who has the ball last, who gets more illegal procedure penalties” contest. The flip side of that, of course, would be 3-2. But I do argue that 61-52 and 3-2 are the same problem from opposite sides of the ball.

    There does need to be something in the mix that returns a bit more balance to the game, offense versus defense. But, given how dominant the SEC has been on that side of the ball to this point, I doubt the rest of the game would be too sympathetic to making LSU, Florida, Alabama, and LSU’s defensive units even more lethal. But the rest of the game suffers as a result.

    • Always Someone Else's Fault

      Clearly meant one LSU and one Georgia. That’s my lessons for watching election news out of one eye and typing with the other.