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.