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Sitting behind the microphone after winning another national championship, coach Nick Saban appeared in front of the media on Monday night and looked a little bored.
It’s getting a little old – six titles in 12 years for his Alabama football team. What else does she have to tell him?
True: This time it was harder than normal. The Crimson Tide (13-0) had to play in a pandemic and win 11 games against opponents in the Southeast Conference, plus two playoff games against Notre Dame and Ohio.
This was probably Saban’s best coaching performance to date, at 69 years old.
But this cannot continue. Or at least it shouldn’t go on if college football wants to avoid becoming as boring as Crimson Tide’s 52-24 win over the Buckeyes for the national title.
“This team has scored for almost every team,” Saban said afterwards in Miami Gardens, Florida. “There is no disrespect to other teams we have had or to teams from the championship.”
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Saban’s quarterback went even further.
“I think we’re the best team to ever play,” said Mc Jones. “There is no team that will ever play the SEC schedule again.”
They may both be right: It was a devilish team that deserved everything, including the third Heisman Trophy winner in 2009. But that’s the problem. Saban will probably be better as a 70-year-old than he was at the age of 50, when he had not yet won a single national title.
This thing is not slowing down. In the world of corporate business, this can be called a monopoly. The federal government even has laws and resources to break up companies that are getting too big and powerful. It’s called “breaking trust” – a way to promote competition in the market and protect consumers by dismantling monstrous monopolies.
This does not happen in college football. Still, it’s time to think about whether we should.
“Is this what we want football to be?” Saban asked in 2012.
He was then talking about non-brawling crimes that irritated his defense.
Today the question can be returned to him: is this what we want to be college football – Saban wins it all at least every two years, mixed with a random title for Clemson or Ohio, and with half the state west of Kansas there is no reason to tune in?
Something must be done for the greater good. Here are some ways to split it:
►Redistribute recruitment talent: Unlike the NFL, college football does not have a player project in which the worst teams choose the best players first, while the best teams choose last. The NFL does this to promote parity. In contrast, Alabama and Clemson landed four of the top 22 players in the recruiting class in 2020, according to 247 sports rankings. One of them is the quarterback from California, Bryce Young, who is expected to replace Jones next season and is already considered a candidate for the Heisman Trophy.
It is also known that Saban began to accumulate players before they started playing in high school.
“He meant everything to me,” Alabama backback Dylan Moses said after Monday’s game. “How he changed my life. I don’t know if you remember, but he offered me an eighth-grade scholarship. I’ve known him since I was 14, personally. “
In the absence of a player project, college football can reduce the team’s scholarship limits from 85 to 75. This would prevent elite teams from accumulating the best players, distributing talent more evenly.
The problem is that it will reduce the overall opportunities for scholarships for players, and some powerful schools (Alabama) would not like it.
►Expand Playoff for Football College: Increasing the field from four to eight teams would put four additional teams on a higher platform at the end of the year, increasing their exposure and attractiveness to recruits. Alabama is likely to dominate the added quarterfinals even more than this year’s semifinals and finals. But that would increase the danger of the Purple Tide, forcing her to take an extra step with a sudden death to the title. Adding some extra teams to the mix could also give rookies like Young the idea that national championships are at least possible in schools west of the Mississippi River.
►Arrange retirement: With his victory on Monday, Saban won a $ 200,000 bonus and is scheduled to win more than $ 10 million this contract year, according to his contract. He already has a statue in front of Bryant-Denny Stadium in Tuscaloosa. He is probably the best coach ever. What more does this man want?
If he retires, there is a good chance the Alabama dynasty will level off in a few years. None of his former assistants have managed to get close to his level of head coach. The cycle may finally end.
In his final season before Saban, Alabama finished 6-7. It was 2006, the end of a 10-year period in which a different team won at least part of the national title each year, including Florida, Texas, Southern California, Oklahoma, Michigan, Ohio and Tennessee.
Wasn’t that a little more interesting for fans outside of Alabama?
Or is this what we want football to be?
Follow sports reporter Brent Schrotenboer @Schrotenboer. Email: email@example.com