Yes, totally not a Saban-worshiping cult. Totally.
If you aren’t fellating the Sabanator and take the time to actually read the interview here, you’ll find that Nick ain’t warning so much as complaining.
“We now have an NFL model with no contracts, but everybody has free agency,” said Saban, echoing a comparison Kiffin has made.
“It’s fine for players to get money. I’m all for that. I’m not against that. But there also has to be some responsibility on both ends, which you could call a contract. So that you have an opportunity to develop people in a way that’s going to help them be successful,” Saban said.
Saban, the highest-paid coach in college football with a salary of nearly $10 million last season, said the balance of power in the sport could tip toward the schools with the wealthiest collectives.
“So there’s going to have to be some changes implemented, some kind of way to still create a level playing field,” he said. “And there is no salary cap. So whatever school decides they want to pay the most, they have the best chance to have the best team. And that’s never been college football, either.”
Saban would prefer Alabama guarantee a set amount of money for every player who plays football for the Crimson Tide.
“We give everybody the same medical care, academic support, food service. Same scholarship. So if we’re going to do this, then everybody is going to benefit equally. I’m not going to create a caste system on our team,” Saban said.
Except he’s already been doing that! Or did he forget about bragging about how much NIL money was rolling in for Bryce Young the minute he set foot on campus?
Let’s not be stupid here. ‘Bama under Saban is always going to get its (more than) fair share of talent. But don’t kid yourself that he didn’t notice Jimbo’s monster class, or the rumors about the $8 million dollar recruit. That, plus the threat of the transfer portal, is just shit Nick Saban doesn’t have time for. His solution isn’t significant because it purports to spread the wealth. It is because it’s a way to use NIL money, or direct school payments, to reassert a level of control over players by means of a contract.
Not that there’s anything wrong with that, as long as it’s fairly entered into. It sure as hell beats the take it or leave it approach NCAA amateurism offered. I’ll be curious to see if this develops any legs.