Thinking back to Saban’s reaction

Now that the NCAA Committee on Infractions has met regarding the Alabama textbook scandal and the documents have been released, it sheds more light on Nick Saban’s response to the mess.

Back in October 2007, Saban was maligned for saying less about the players and more about the University’s problems in the textbook oversight. According to the AP, “Head coach Nick Saban said Monday the players used ‘poor judgment’ but that the university’s textbook distribution system for athletes also failed the players. ‘No one at the university wants me to say it, but it’s true,’ Saban said in a speech to the Monday Morning Quarterback Club.”

Saban’s response to this problem looks similar to the University’s response where the school admitted it failed to monitor the program—in other words the cop fell asleep on patrol.

In UA’s response to the NCAA the school brags about how its new policies should prevent any future problems. “The newly reformed textbook issuance process at the University will better deter wrongdoing and better prevent mistakes.”

Saban talks extensively about not worrying over things you cannot control. Instead Saban obsesses over what he can control, and Saban along with the University can control preventative measures—in other words tightening security.

Saban’s response to academic troubles at LSU should have provided guidance on how he would respond to this problem at Alabama. In his book Saban explained how the academic problems at LSU were fixed: “Now, the coaching staff had no idea this was going on—but when we found out, we made sure it wouldn’t happen again. The athletic department made changes in how academic work is monitored, and the university tightened its overview of student-athletes.”

What came out of that academic trouble? A new director of academic support, moving oversight of the academic-support program to the provost (and getting it out of the athletic department) and a recruiting tool—a new academic support center. If anything, Saban knows how to make lemonade when handed lemons.

Alabama’s textbook problem and LSU’s academic problem both showcased Saban’s management style. Alabama’s textbook issue brings up other issues beyond Saban’s reaction: how the University allegedly stonewalled release of the NCAA allegation, and the behavior of student-athletes.


Add Yours
  1. 1
    Auburnisajoke formerly the fan known as Ballplay Indian.

    You know some higher ups in T-town no longer have a rear end after he got finished with em. If dude goes off on a player for missing a block, just think what he would do about this .

  2. 4

    I’d feel much better for the future if UA hired an outside Auditing service (Ernst and Young, PriceWaterhouseCoopers, etc.) to externally analyze their NCAA compliance control system and provide recommendations for the future.

  3. 5

    Hey man, that is a good suggestion. I don’t know what the University does, but the SEC sends out a firm to audit compliance every two years. According to the University’s filings today, the SEC visited in 2005 and 2007. I’m going to see if I can find the law firm or auditors with a quick read of the document.

    Your suggestion is good…a yearly review would also be nice due to the complexity and changing rules.

  4. 6

    From the report:

    The Southeastern Conference conducts regular comprehensive compliance reviews of all its member institutions. The auditors are selected and remunerated by the Southeastern Conference.

    The most recent reviews were completed in October 2004 and February 2007 by Bond,
    Schoeneck, & King, PLLC.

  5. 9

    While we all know this issue is OLD, OLD, OLD news, with a swift and appropriate reaction by the school to correct the situation, we’re all a little uneasy because we’re not dealing with a fair and balanced system concerned with justice and due process.

    I would be shocked if anything came of it, but then I was shocked by all the dotted lines the NCAA worked overtime to connect now almost ten years ago with very little hard, factual evidence to work off of.

    Even still, we’re not talking about even remotely the same weighty allegations as before. Maybe a scholarship, if that?

    But on another note, could this comign out (and the timing of it) have anything to do with why Coffee bolted early?

  6. 10
    Auburnisajoke formerly the fan known as Ballplay Indian.

    ITK. ..I dont know what everyone else thinks , but I would doubt it. IMO Coffee left because he didnt have two A.A. lineman blocking for him any more. But dude was a good running back, no doubt.

  7. 11

    ITK, if that is why Coffee left it doesn’t bode well. That could mean that Coffee knows from personal experience that the problem runs deeper than the Bama Admin. realizes right now. If I had to bet though, I’d say he left because he wanted some money in the pros.

    Barry McKnight on 740 in montgomery posed an interesting question this morning, and it touched on an issue I’ve brought up several times. If Bama does get slapped a little and put on probation (which would seriously raise their profile in the eyes of the NCAA), does that make Saban antsy enough to start looking around at other jobs? Kinda puts his “no buyout” demand in a whole new light, doesn’t it?

  8. 12

    Julio, we know you are praying hard for Saban to leave. Probably won’t happen anytime soon though. But we can see your desire for him to leave. You are the typical Auburn fan. When do you ever find the time to actually talk and discuss the future of your team?

  9. 13

    Brando, it’s really kind of funny. You constantly bi+ch about ballyplay, omni, and me coming on this blog and posting comments but the only comments you ever make are in response to what we post. Admit it…everytime you come to this blog you can’t wait to read and respond to comments made by those dreaded bastards julio, ballplay, and omni. You wouldn’t visit this site half as much as you do if it weren’t for us.

    P.S. You’re welcome, Cappy

  10. 14
    OMNIPRESENT aka 36 - 0 and 17-10

    Made me SMile :)and I personally dont want Saban going anywhere. aS THE GREAT PUBLIC ENEMY SAID I DONT BELEIVE THE HYPE!!!

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