Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Everyone's Pinata...

Look, no one should feel sorry for Nick Saban. He's the highest paid college coach in the land, at one of the highest profile jobs in the country, and he got there after saying he wasn't going there. And if you want to hold his feet to the fire for not having his team ready against Mississippi St. and something called Louisiana-Monroe, then have at it. To the victor goes the spoils, to the loser, the ire of SportsNation...fair enough. But this firestorm over Saban's use of historical events to make a point is a bit much.

Saban NEVER said his teams pitiful loss to La-Monroe was LIKE 9/11 or Pearl Harbour. He used those events to illustrate galvanizing events. He spoke of his team hitting rock bottom. It was the same speech he gave the team in the locker room. They got it. Just like they, and every other football team, get the analogies that coaches often use. These men study history, war and the great Generals of all time. It is something that is passed down from the coaching tree. Learn how to lead men from the greatest leaders of men. But this is not even that! This is Saban making a historical reference to how people rally from tough times. More than 15,000 people have responded to a national poll asking if the comments were offensive. 61% have said no. But media blowhards like Dan LeBatard, he of the MIAMI radio show and MIAMI newspaper column couldn't wait to use his bully pulpit to push his pathetic, pandering efforts in his hometown.

The great irony in all of this is that Saban has provided cover for Charlie Wies, who has single handily brought Notre Dame to it's knees. And who do these guys count as there mentor and former boss? Bill Bellichick....good thing he hasn't done anything controversial this year!

(Dawgnote: In the interest of full disclosure, I note that my son does work in the Alabama Football office as a Sophomore student assistant. However, this is not a pathetic, pandering attempt to improve his lot there...Facts are stubborn things!)

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Either way, it was a dumb thing for a person in his position to say. This was something he scripted too. He actually thought about it before he said it. Saint Nick would be better off keeping quiet.

Anonymous said...

He was actually repeating what he had told the team in the locker room; thats why it sounded so canned...

Anonymous said...

I am just sick of hearing the media spinning everything against him. It has gotten to the point that I am sick of listening to it. As someone who knows a little about the communications world, these so called "Sports Reporters" sicken me lately. They have a responsibility to not only the public, but the coaches and players as well. Who even said Nick had to give an interview to you? If you aren't going to respect him as a man. As a person. As a leader of many very successful young men... Why should he respect you as a member of the media? And as for me, I don't want to listen to your agenda. I don't even really care for your opinion. I care what is going on with sports.
Any coach knows that the biggest problem you have to deal after losing a game like the LSU one is losing you team for the rest of the season. The team quit after the LSU game. They threw in the towel on the season. The coaches however have done a great job turning this program around. It has not shown necessarily in the Win/Loss column, yet, but that will come. This team is struggling to find a new identity. Actually, to forge a new identity. The team we saw in the last year of the Shula era is gone, but not dead. The fourth quarter blues are gone, and we have seen a team that seemingly controls its own destiny in games. When they play good and execute, they win or compete with THE bet team in the country (LSU). When they fail to prepare during the week, the results show (See FSU, MSU, ULM). The team quit on the coaches after LSU. But I agree, as will coach Saban that it is part of his responsibility to get them ready and motivated to play. However, this does not happen overnight. A great example is the suspensions. Even the best tide players often forget to put the team before the me. That comes back to character though, and as we have seen, that is less of a factor on the field.
Finally, Saban is a hard ass, and we all know the saying, if your gonna dish it, ya better be ready to take it. I was not at all offended by them. The game is a war. It is everything these men fight for. Coaches and players alike. Blood, sweat and tears is not just a saying, it is a way of life. If you were in that locker room after that ULM game, you would know. If you had to walk into that office on Sunday morning after letting that many people down, you would know... I am a proud supporter of the war in Iraq and all of our troops around the world. I would never compare the element of loss in war (lives) to the element of loss in a game (The L). It's not the same. I will say though that unless you know through experience what these men go through on a daily basis, don't judge them. If the man wants to use talk of real heroes to motivate men to become the heroes you expect to win that SEC championship, let him. If you can't understand what he is getting at, than keep your mouth shut because you are either A) Someone who doesn't know real passion, pain, and the game. Or 2) You are working towards an agenda.
I would just like the sports reporters to take responsibility and report the news. Most listeners and fans of shows have never and will never meet the man for their selves. Introduce them to the man. The team. The truth.

Anonymous said...

"A great example is the suspensions. Even the best tide players often forget to put the team before the me. That comes back to character though, and as we have seen, that is less of a factor on the field"... Gimme a break crimson coolaid drinker. Nice half game suspension for Hall and the great Castille got zip punishment for being a jailbird. Oh well, his punishment will be that he can tell everyone that he never beat Auburn.