Schultz also goes after Saban for a lack of success with the Dolphins, but Saban's work in 2005 in getting a really bad team to 9-7 was universally praised in the NFL (one game worse than the 10-6 that Eric Mangini put up this year in similar circumstances and now Mike Francesa and other ignorant yankees are proclaiming that Saban is leaving because he's scared of Mangini). The Dolphins were a disappointment this year, but they finished the season on their third quarterback, so what do you expect? Furthermore, I have it on good authority (from the one Dolphins fan I know and he's a Yale Law grad, so there!) that Saban made the decision for Culpepper over Brees based on medical advice that Culpepper's injury posed less of an issue than Brees's did. So, by all means, Jeff, criticize Saban for not having a medical degree.
And this gem from Schultz is especially weak:
There are at least five schools in the SEC with more strength, stability and promise: Georgia, Florida, LSU, Tennessee, Auburn. (Alabama gets the edge over South Carolina only because of the alphabet.)
Auburn? The school that was trying to fire its coach after the 2003 season because the booster who runs the school decided that the season was disappointing? The school that typically gets out-recruited in-state by Alabama even when the Tide are struggling. (Auburn does have strong ties to western Georgia that helps to compensate for this fact.) Auburn is only a better job if your memory extends no farther than back to 2004.
And as usual, the Auburn camp has stepped forward to claim that Alabama has goofed again. Where to begin?
After all the blown smoke clears, all the UAT "brain trust" has done today is overpay by about double for a football coach.
Yes, they overpaid, but as the baseball free agent market illustrates, it's better to overpay for something close to a sure thing than it is to overpay slightly less money for a variable. Saban is as close to a sure thing as there is in the coaching market. Moreover, if coaching salaries continue to skyrocket, then the $4M per year will be less and less objectionable.
As Ivan Maisel notes this evening, going out and bribing a coach out of the NFL is a classic desperation ploy. It's an admission that the Alabama job just isn't attractive to anybody who values his job security or sanity.
If the Alabama job isn't attractive, then why did the highly-compensated Nick Saban take it? And Saban has coached in the SEC before, so you can't even claim that he doesn't know what he's getting into. Only an Auburn fan can look at his rival hiring one of the most attractive coaches on the market and then decide that this means that the Alabama job isn't an attractive one. In related news, Will will be posting this off-season on how the '92 Bama defense was a sieve, Bear Bryant wasn't as successful as Shug Jordan, and crimson is actually blue.
And they've done it because being cemented in the wake of a successful Auburn is driving them completely crazy.
No shit, Sherlock. Bama is hiring the best coach available because they haven't been successful in recent years and that's included losing five in a row to their arch-rival. If the shoe was on the other foot and Auburn had lost five in a row to Alabama while posting mostly mediocre results, wouldn't Auburn want to go out and hire the best coach available? Maybe even one who swears he won't leave his current job other than in a pine box?