Rumors of Nick Saban to Texas: What is the latest from Tuscaloosa?

The rumors are heating up that Alabama football coach Nick Saban might leave Tuscaloosa to coach the University of Texas Longhorns. Speculation about Saban’s future was enhanced as Paul Finebaum reported that Alabama sent the football coach a contract extension on Friday, but as of this morning, Saban had not signed the new contract.

Cue the weeping and gnashing of teeth on the Internet and talk radio.

Is Alabama football coach Nick Saban headed to Texas?
Is Alabama football coach Nick Saban headed to Texas?
Regardless of what happens, you can count on one thing—Alabama fans, boosters and message board warriors will form the traditional circular firing squad.

Alabama fans are already looking for a scapegoat even though Nick Saban has not boarded a jet for Austin and the University of Texas. (And it remains highly unlikely that he will leave Tuscaloosa for Texas.)

Bill Battle is the AD. Maybe he is at fault if Saban might possibly could leave?!? Yeah, he does not want to kowtow to Alabama’s football dynasty.

Finus Gaston is the culprit. After all, he is always the culprit.

It is the new president. Whoever she is, she isn’t Dr. Robert Witt.

It is the NCAA. There must be another NCAA probe and that is why Saban is even thinking about Texas! Of course, even though this is not an issue, some people will overreact and reach for any explanation of for why Saban is the subject of all these Internet rumors.

The best information within Alabama circles is that Nick Saban will remain at Alabama. However, there is one enormous caveat from someone close to the university administration. Specifically, this person told the Capstone Report that fans should not dismiss Terry Saban’s comment regarding complacency. Mrs. Saban was quoted by the Wall Street Journal as saying that she and Nick wondered about the appreciation at Alabama for what Saban has done.

This person believed the quote was not a misquote, as some fans speculated. This person close to the university said the comment should be viewed as a message regarding what Nick Saban thinks.

I asked the source about whether the message was appreciation, why the statue was not enough to show the university’s appreciation and if a museum would be enough? I was told that missed the entire point.

The message was not about such shows of affection or admiration, but more about complacency within the fans and the organization. Fans and opinion leaders within the university should not have an air of entitlement. Alabama cannot expect to win unless it continue to improve. Alabama must continue to win the arms race within college football and that requires a willingness to invest and do what Saban thinks is best.

And who are we to disagree with what Nick Saban thinks? Saban is the greatest football coach in the BCS era, the greatest coach since Paul W. “Bear” Bryant and possibly even greater than the legendary Bryant.

22 thoughts on “Alabama Football: The latest on Nick Saban to Texas”

  1. Kirk Herbstreit has said that Saban will not go to Texas, that he knows Saban and you might as well “scratch Nick Saban from the list” of possible Texas coaches. “Turn the page” and move on.

    It won’t shock me if Saban leaves, but after the 60 Minutes interview, and in light of Herbstreit’s comments, I feel pretty good about him staying.

  2. I hope Kirk is right however if it’s about money I feel that Alabama should match and can match whatever Texas puts on the table because not only is Saban the greatest coach in football his wife Terry comes with the package it’s a two for one deal because Terry helps out a huge amount recruiting and with numerous other things as for as Alabama’s football team and other things so I say match Texas and keep Saban Alabama has the money and he Nick Saban and Ms.Terry are worth it …Roll Tide Roll !! And I will remain a Bama fan and a Nick Saban fan no matter the outcome …Roll Tide Roll !!! Forever Feared & Forever Strong!!!RTR….

    1. Money is not an issue. I don’t mean to sound like I’m gloating. Frankly a dozen or more universities could afford a $10 million salary, if not more schools and for more money. Don’t worry about that part.

  3. Honestly I am tired of the university being held hostage. If he wants to go then go if he wants to stay then stay, but the whole I am not appreciated enough is so ridiculous. He could be governor of alabama if so chooses. He has turned into the rock star that wants the green M&Ms removed before he will eat them. Bama was Bama before Saban and it will be after he is gone, I want him to stay but I will not beg. You signed up for this job just do it quit asking for a rub on the tummy along with the millions.

    1. He wants what’s best for the University of Alabama. Don’t make it about him holding anyone hostage. Frankly, I’m upset too when the stands aren’t completely full, even if the ticket price has quintupled since 2009 as a result of Alabama’s success, yet we never have anything like Auburn had the last two years, and I wouldn’t expect anything different at any school after 7 years and 3 national titles.

      I don’t understand the “complacency” part regardless. I don’t think it makes sense.

      Let’s put it this way—-would any school (including Texas) expect anything less than championships from Saban? Hell, Saban doesn’t expect anything less from himself, why should we? That’s not to say we’re disappointed, not at all.

      Bottom line, today is December 11, 2013, and Nick Saban is the coach at the Univeristy of Alabama. Until he leaves or says he’s leaving, I treat his words about staying in Tuscaloosa just like I treat his words about being us being good leaders, being good representatives of the University of Alabama, and improving the lives of others. You don’t question it. You just do it.

  4. Good points everyone.

    Let me ask a question just for sake of argument. Isn’t the type of thinking that Alabama is too big to fail the reason Alabama spent about a decade and a half in mediocrity?

    1. I guess that is relative during the time you are referring to, the Alabama Crimson Tide was 106 and 55 with 9 Bowl appearances 5 of which were wins with a winning percentage around 65 percent. I believe that there are many programs that would love to have that level of mediocrity.

    2. Alabama spent about a decade and a half in mediocrity and still sold-out football games.

      Auburn couldn’t sell-out even with a title-winning coach the last two seasons.

      Texas was in yet another conference title game just this weekend, yet they still might fire Mack Brown.

      If complacency is a problem at Alabama, it’s worse everywhere else.

  5. Coach Saban,

    If you decide to stay, thank you.

    If you decide to go, thanks for the memories.


  6. I came up with a great t-shirt slogan.

    We’ve got an athletic director named Bill Battle (former Bear Bryant player)

    Auburn has an AD, but many people believe Pat Dye (former Bryant assistant coach) pulls the strings there.

    I’d rather Battle than Dye

    I think Battle will negotiate a good deal and keep Saban at Alabama

  7. Just found out Texas offered him 10% of everything and control of the whole football program. He is getting a mansion and a ranch if he goes to Texas. He will not sign Alabama’s offer. Why would he not do this because he is thinking about going to Texas.

    1. Saban now receives complete and Total Control of all Texas football facilities, decisions, everything to keep TEXAS the leader in the college football arms race. Also a small tidbit Saban grew Alabama’s gross revenue over 110% in his tenure! Imagine that percentage increase when Texas already has over $160 million in revenue and thats when Texas really hasn’t even been that good.

  8. Nick has done an outstanding job since coming to Alabama as Head Football Coach…. I was told the following to me by a co-worker back in the 1960’s and the 2 words are… MONEY TALKS and it still does today.

  9. Why might he leave? Here are two obvious points that everyone is missing:

    1. He clearly does not like Alabama fans.

    2. As hard as it may be to believe for some of you, Austin is a much better city than Tuscaloosa. At some point, all the money in the world can’t make a city more tolerable to live in. Before you guys get too upset by this, let me provide you a personal example. I live in a relatively small college town in the midwest that does not offer a lot of diversity with regard to dining, culture, activities, etc. Eventually, I will move to a larger city that provides these things, at which point I will probably be offered a raise to stay. At some point, however, no amount of money that I earn will improve the town that I live in and I will leave regardless. I imagine Saban and his wife are contemplating the same thing.

    1. priceless from an AU fan talking about tuscaloosa. The place on Lake Burton where he is going to retire is a small community. If a bigger place was on his plate then why retire to lake burton. I can tell you a young buck based on your comments. I live in a small community and have for the past 23 years. Nothing like it. Tuscaloosa is a metro city compared to where I live.

    2. What, exactly, are you thinking Nick Saban would want in Austin? Music festivals?

      He boats and he builds homes and raises money. I get why Austin is great—I’ve been there, it’s a great party and music town.

      Austin is also a great football town, and football is the only thng Nick Saban cares about. It’s not like coaches like Saban can go out to eat at restaurants like you and me, regardless. Frankly, Lake Tuscaloosa where their lake home is on is perfect for a celebrity figurehead like Saban. Not only that, but Austin runs like crazy 365 days a year. Tuscaloosa is still a football college town.

      1. Look fellas, I’m not suggesting there is anything wrong with Tuscaloosa. Mbroke, I’m not even trying to suggest AU is a better town (although I personally like it better… but of course I’m an AU alum). I’m simply suggesting that many people prefer to live in or near (suburbs) larger cities that have more to offer. I honestly don’t know whether Saban prefers that or not, but I think it is worth considering. By the way, a couple of your comments crack me up…

        Mbroke, unfortunately I am not a “young buck” unless you think that include people in their late 30s. Regardless, I grew up in the greater Birmingham area (Homewood), lived in Mobile for a couple years, lived in Orlando for 6 years, lived in Columbus OH for a year, and now live in the midwest. I have traveled all over the country to cities such as Boston, NY, Chicago, Miami, D.C., Seattle, New Orleans, San Francisco, Toronto, Dallas, etc., etc., and I can absolutely assure you that Tuscaloosa is NOT a metro city. The very fact that you even suggested that, even if it was a comparison of your home town, indicates that you need to take some time and venture outside of Alabama. It also tells me that you probably just won’t get what I am saying about Saban possibly wanting to live it a city with a bit more diversity in culture, dining, entertainment, etc.

        Conduit, your comments seem to suggest that you are the “young buck” that broker is referring to. If truly believe that the only difference between Austin and T-town is the music festivals, you’re probably not the kind of person that will get what I am saying either.

        1. No, I get what you’re saying, I just think it’s missing the point. This is Nick Saban we’re talking about here.

          Yes, Austin is more of a metro city.

          That’s exactly why I think it makes less sense for Nick Saban.

          You like going out, nice restaurants, events, etc.

          Do you think Saban does? I don’t. He doesn’t do that stuff, even on the recruiting trail. But even if he did, it’s incidental, isn’t it? Let’s face it, it’s not like he can go out to places like that without getting a could hundred requests for pictures, questions about recruiting, etc.

          Some celebrity coaches aren’t like that. Most are, particularly the high-caliber working college coaches. Nick Saban goes to a few fundraisers, ribbon cuttings for the houses he helps build, and the lake. Frankly, and as much as I love Austin, Tuscaloosa is a better fit for Saban just on paper alone.

          I get why other people, including you and me, might want to live in a city with “more diversity in culture, dining, entertainment, etc,” I just don’t think that matters to Nick Saban at all, and instead might actually be more of a deterrent. Nick Saban cares about college football, and that’s what Tuscaloosa has, plus a gorgeous lake he spends time on without being bothered. I don’t think it gets better than that for a guy so focused on football. His family is there. He has a 10-minute commute. That’s hard to beat, and it’s hard to ignore the difference wouldn’t be better in Austin but worse.

  10. It depends on who eyes you are looking through to consider a person “a young buck” in actual age, but the maturity level of a person in their late 30’s or late 50’s could be the same or light years a part.

    Nick Saban has status and can pretty much do anything he wants; anywhere he wants. Unless you are looking through those type eyes, no of us has a clue as to what he wants from a city. All I know he wants is to be the head coach of a winning football program.

    If you think Texas has more history in college football than BAMA, you are looking through eyes stained with jealousy. Our history is not dream. Its not a fantasy. Its what we have done and who we are. At the present, we are the greatest college football program in history. Nick Saban helped to continue our history, but he does not have enough years left in life to bring Texas up the level of BAMA.

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