Nick Saban is…unethical

UPDATE:Roll Bama Roll posted a nice deconstruction of the issues Thursday morning.

AOL’s fanhouse featured a confrontation between Brian Cook and Pete Holladay over Nick Saban.

Nick Saban has been attacked for everything bad from the subprime mortgage collapse to the war in Iraq. So, why not one more thing. Cook goes after Saban for over-signing.

Alabama’s #1 class is actually #6 by star average; Miami’s #4 class is 14th by that metric. Both contain large numbers of players with no chance to qualify this fall; it’s all smoke and mirrors.

Cook shows he doesn’t even know how recruiting classes are ranked. The major services don’t rank quantity, but judge quality, position rankings, stars and a host of other factors to create a ranking. Rivals has a complicated statistical analysis it runs to create its ranking.

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But Cook probably knew that. He isn’t going to let truth get in the way of a good Nick Saban column. Cook has repeatedly attacked the former Michigan State coach.

A few samples: Ray Melick is a Saban lapdog, which is laughable to anyone who actually reads Melick, Hahaha Ha Ha Ha Ha Haha. Ha. Saban. West Virginia. Ha , which is as you probably guessed a blog post celebrating the possibility of Saban heading to West Virginia.


Cook writes a lot about Alabama and Nick Saban.

Since he’s a Michigan fan, I guess he will always hate the guy who once coached the Spartans.

Holladay repudiates Cook’s attack with a strong argument:

Brian’s post may have led some readers to believe that few teams actually over-sign recruits, or that Saban is one of the most egregious of the over-signers. Here are some numbers to put that in context: 28 D-IA teams signed more than 25 recruits in 2008. In other words, nearly a quarter of all teams over-signed. Only one conference (the WAC) had no teams that over-signed players. Nine teams signed 30 or more players and Army signed a whopping 37, 12 more than the 25-scholarship limit. Even Troy got into the act with 33 signees…

So if, indeed, Saban is a bad person for over-signing these players, there are a lot of bad people in college football and Cook, if he were trying to be fair, should be leveling the same criticism at the likes of Troy, Army, and even his own beloved Rodriguez. (Of course, for a guy so interested in coaching ethics, he’s written surprisingly little about the ethics of Rodriguez trying to weasel out of his contract buy-out after bolting for Ann Arbor, but that’s another topic for another day.)

Cook was hoisted by his own petard. He shouldn’t scold others about ethics when he was defending one of the biggest offenders of ethics around.

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  1. 1
    Brian Cook, stick to the Big Ten. K thX « Third Saturday in Blogtober

    […] I’m not going to do a rebuttal on all these points, because well, others have pretty much buried Brian’s post. OTS at Roll Bama Roll, Capstone Report, and AOL Fanhouse’s own Pete Holiday all got my back. Pete had an especially funny (not haha funny, think Nelson from the Simpsons) stat that showed that the beloved Rodriguez oversigned on half of his classes at West Virginia. […]

  2. 2
    A Random Post With No Flow Whatsoever « The Tide Druid

    […] A Random Post With No Flow Whatsoever February 15, 2008 — TideDruid I’m sure you’ve heard this entire “Saban is the the anti-Christ because he signed more than 25 players” business. Many different people have started discussing the Brain Cook blog post on AOL FanHouse (Pete Holiday, Roll Bama Roll, Capstone Report, Joe Cribbs Car Wash, Third Saturday in Blogtober, etc.) […]

  3. 3
    Fair Opinion

    WILL SABAN DO BAMA LIKE HE DID THE DOLPHINS ??

    Saban left Dolphins as a loser, weasel

    BY DAN LE BATARD
    dlebatard@MiamiHerald.com

    The punctuation on the Nick Saban Dolphin Error is greasy and greedy. You know what he was as Dolphins coach? A failure. A loser. A gasbag. And one of the worst investments Dolphins owner Wayne Huizenga has ever made. He was less of a success than Dave Wannstedt and more of a traitor than Ricky Williams. There has been very little in franchise history that came with more expectations and fewer results than this hypocrite who at the end avoided the hard questions one last time.

    Talk like a warrior. Behave like a weasel.

    Maybe Saban would be better off in college. Because, in the pros the last few days, he has looked like a complete and utter amateur.

    He will be remembered in these parts as a quitter and a liar. He leaves the franchise in last place, with what used to be his good name somehow far lower than that. And for this he’ll get a $25 million raise and more job security in Alabama. Makes you wonder what USC’s Pete Carroll or Ohio State’s Jim Tressel are worth, doesn’t it?

    Larry Coker, a decent man, gets fired for his one championship. Saban, a duplicitous one, gets the most lucrative job in college football.

    Saban could have fixed his reputation today if he had that mental toughness he is always sermonizing about. We have the meandering spiel memorized by now. About ”competitive character” and ”overcoming adversity” and blah, blah, blah. You preach it, Nick. But you don’t live it. Not when it’s easier to run away and hide.

    Miami, 6-10 against an easy schedule, was swept this year by younger teams in its division — the Jets and Bills. The team isn’t better than when Saban arrived, just older. What little winning Saban has done has been with players left for him by Jimmy Johnson and Dave Wannstedt. What’s the best decision Saban has made in two years? Can you name one?

    So it makes sense that he would lack hope. But when his players are losing, he asks them to be proud and fight and overcome, even though what they do hurts a hell of a lot more than what he does. But now, reputation in tatters, integrity stained, he runs away from this fight — to be a dictator to kids who question less and have less power to challenge him. Of course he’d go. It’s a good deal easier. And a new crowd eager for a savior can hear his hot-air speeches about being a gladiator.

    Saban made Huizenga look like a public fool with all his condescending talk of integrity recently, reprimanding reporters at every turn while his agent secretly kept taking slimy calls from Alabama in the shadows. What a raging fraud Saban sounds like today, every bit as counterfeit as Miami’s Super Bowl expectations.

    Oh, a man, even one under contract, is allowed to change his mind and listen to other offers, especially those that double his salary. But what makes Saban’s behavior so unctuous recently is that he had the audacity to question the questioners with super-sized arrogance even while lying all along to his players and his boss. Huizenga has given this man everything he has wanted — given him more than any NFL owner anywhere has given any other coach. He deserves better than this. He deserves better than Saban leaving him to answer the hard questions today.

    Makes you wonder, too: Huizenga went after Ricky Williams and his money with cutthroat zeal, and Williams is still paying him back. But Saban just broke a contract, too. There are no outs in Saban’s contract to go back to the minor leagues.

    Remember how mad you were when Williams retired? Well, he wasn’t cheating on you. He wasn’t grabbing for more money. His body hurt from a beating, and he wanted to rest. What Saban has done is a more traitorous act — the most traitorous act in the history of the franchise. He’s leaving simply because he couldn’t handle a hard job on the sidelines of a game in which he asks others to be violent. He gave up, in other words. And filing it under ”family” now as a diluter, in search of understanding, rings hollow because you can’t believe anything the man says about this situation. You think he’d be leaving if he were 3-13?

    Saban, infomercial sermonizer, talked a lot about loyalty and integrity and toughness.

    But, in the end, these were not his guides.

    They were only the kinds of things he demanded of others.

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