Regardless of how much of a truth bomb you think Nick Saban was throwing yesterday, you have to admit some of what he said was nothing but blowing smoke. Andy Staples ($$) neatly skewered perhaps the most eye-rolling comment of Saban’s day with this:
But now in recruiting, we have players in our state that grew up wanting to come to Alabama, that they won’t commit to us unless we say we’re going to give them what somebody else is going to give them. And my theory on that is everything that we’ve done in college athletics has always been equal. Your scholarship is equal. They get equal Alston money. They get equal cost of attendance. They get equal academic support. They get equal medical attention. Everything has always been equal.
Nothing has ever been equal in college football. Troy has never been able to compete with Alabama, even though they are both in the same NCAA subdivision. Louisiana-Monroe did that one time, but essentially these programs are in different universes. Yet Saban claims that the rules promoted equality. What they actually did was create the most lopsided playing field in any major American sport…
Meanwhile, Saban built Alabama into the program most likely to compete for championships by taking advantage of every opportunity for inequality.
Of course he did. That’s been the secret sauce for his unprecedented success. It’s what he sells to keep the talent pipeline to Tuscaloosa flowing.
Much of Saban’s recruiting pitch — as well as the pitches of coaches at other national title-caliber programs — is that everything at Alabama is inherently better than everything those recruits will find at other schools. The nutrition. The academic support. The strength and conditioning program. The entire pitch is about how other schools aren’t equal to Alabama. So the sentiment that the goal is equality is completely disingenuous. The goal is to ensure the other programs don’t find an edge so Alabama can keep being better. [Emphasis added.]
Damn straight, Skippy. And if Nick believes that’s being threatened, either somebody takes steps to rein that in, or Saban will try to find a next level way at Alabama to neutralize the threat.
Parity doesn’t mean what you and I think it means. Don’t say we haven’t been warned.