Nick Saban’s empty threat

The header may have been what drew me into this article, but it’s the conclusion that grabbed me.

Should the SEC elect to completely open up its transfer policy, Saban not-so-playfully suggested the Crimson Tide would only be aided by such a move.

“We would benefit as much as anybody in our league if you said you can transfer. Kentucky’s got a good player? We’ll go see if we can get him to come to Alabama,” Saban said. “Why do we want that? Why do we need that? How does that help the integrity of what we’re trying to do as a conference or as a league? I’m not for having free agency in our conference.”

Coach, pleeze.

The man who had a rule named after Jonathan Taylor is whining about “the integrity of what we’re trying to do as a conference”?  Don’t make me laugh.

Beyond that, what Saban is talking about there (“Kentucky’s got a good player? We’ll go see if we can get him to come to Alabama”) is tampering, potentially speaking.  Somehow that strikes me as a much bigger threat to integrity than anything Maurice Smith wanted.

The reason Saban is up in arms about this is because his program has greater depth than any other team in the SEC, which means the odds that a loosening of the transfer rules leads to a net talent drain from ‘Bama are decent.  That’s some shit Saban has time for.

Anybody think that his next step will be to manage his players’ academic progress to cut down the number of kids eligible for graduate transfers?  The man does like to work those envelope edges.


Filed under Nick Saban Rules

8 responses to “Nick Saban’s empty threat

  1. Hogbody Spradlin

    “manage his players’ academic progress”. Oh yeah.
    And any Alabama faculty member who has Jan Kemp like ideas will be sleeping with the fishes.


  2. Spurrier was an @$$ on the field but was funny when he talked to the media. Little Nicky is just an @$$. You hit the nail on the head, Senator. He hates this because of the impact on his team. Does anyone really think he’ll go after a grad transfer from Kentucky? I agree with you … he’s going to make sure guys who are potential contributors and are at risk of graduate transfer slow down their academic progress.


    • 92 grad

      I agree. Sos was all about fielding a team that took advantage of his x’s against your o’s. I never really heard him talk about building a program, building a staff, creating a monster of a machine, just used what he had. It’s fun to think about how different it used to be.


  3. Paul

    The “integrity of what we’re trying to do” is win. So what he’s asking is “how does this help ME win?” IMHO Nicky is simply trying to point out that very few teams have players he actually wants to poach. As you correctly point out, he knows the program most likely to lose talent is Alabama. As far as managing his players academic progress in order to make sure they don’t finish school with athletic eligibility left, he’s probably already been doing that. Saban is nothing if not proactive. And what nineteen year old doesn’t like the sound of “let’s lighten your academic load a bit?”


  4. MGW

    I hope we “get ours” before it gets out of hand, but parity’s coming. I don’t think its a bad thing, but it is coming.

    Alabama’s the poster child for big time money spending, stacking talent like cord wood, dominating the little guy top tier D-1 football, but rules like these will have the exact same effect on us. All these early signing dates, scholarship limits, grad transfer rules and the like will hurt us just the same as Alabama.

    It doesn’t feel like it because we haven’t won squat in a long time. But we’re in the top tier of college football that these rules are designed to hurt. And no, nobody’s motivation here is to help the players. The sole motivation is to prop up the lesser teams, and there are more of them than there are better teams so get ready.


  5. Macallanlover

    Perhaps only Little Nicky is looking at being a predator in this process, I certainly didn’t see the change as a way to add 10 staff members to study other guys’ players and academic progress. I hope there is a heavy penalty added for any direct contact initiated from schools, let the players open the process once the bowls are over and solicit teams/programs. This is sleazy sounding to me, might know which state it would come from.


    • MGW

      He ain’t looking at being a predator. The schools with historically bad teams have all the leverage right now with the “think of the kids” argument. He’s just trying to make them sweat a little. Trust me, they’re not sweating.

      The Senator’s right; there’s going to be a lot more kids leaving schools like Bama for a chance to start at schools like Kentucky, than there will be kids leaving starting positions at Kentucky to go ride pine for a year at Bama.


      • Macallanlover

        I can agree that it is rare he would need to be but it is his words that said if needed something they would go after it. My comment was that action should be banned, it should be initiated by the graduate student only.