Alabama Coach Nick Saban has been one of the loudest voices in pressing for a name, image and example reform even though the ability for student-athletes to tap into their backs has only been around for 11 months. He was an advocate of simplifying the process tightly governed by individual state laws, and he engaged in a war of words with Texas A&M Coach Jimbo Fisher said so earlier this month The best category in the history of 247 sports.
Saban was asked about this little dust Tuesday at the SEC’s spring meetings in Destin, Florida, and also apologized for mentioning Texas A&M by name.
“I didn’t really say anyone did anything wrong,” Saban said. “I didn’t say nobody did anything wrong, well, I said all I’m going to say about this. I didn’t have to mention any individual institution, and I said it before.”
He followed Fisher on the podium on Wednesday and declined to answer any questions about the public altercation with Saban. Fisher said he and Saban spoke briefly at the start of the meeting, but they talked tough about business.
“It’s over with” Fisher said. “We’re done talking about it. We’re moving into the future and trying to fix what needs to be done in college football. We have more pressing needs than our argument.”
It’s the second time Saban has apologized since Fisher’s 10-minute talk in which he described, among other things, Saban as a narcissist.
‘We never bought one’advance this month. “No rules were broken, nothing was done wrong. These families, it is despicable for a reputable head coach to come out and say this when he doesn’t get what he wants or things don’t go his way. The narcissist inside doesn’t do that” to allow it to happen. these things. It’s absurd.”
The war of words may have seemed a bit childish, but it reinforced the idea that firewalls had to be put in place in order to make the NIL work the way it was intended. In a roundabout way, the Saban and Fisher dispute shed more light on the havoc caused by the absence of uniform regulations across the board.
“We need some kind of transparency in the name, image and likeness deals to verify that players are doing what they need to so they have the opportunity to make money by name, image and example,” Saban said. “And believe me, I’m all for players making everything they can do, okay. But I also think we have to have a standardized, transparent way of doing that. Our players did very well last year in name, image and likeness because they got agents, they had representation, and it was They have people who really want to endorse something for them, and they’ve done it very well. This is a public record, and you can see how successful they are.”
The NIL era also gave more voices to the people surrounding high school and college athletes. High school parents and coaches have always been prominent, but now agents, marketing firms, and processors have more seats at the table.
“Student-athletes need some protection from unfair representation or deals in name, image, and example,” Saban said. “You could have a player – and this has happened to us in the past – who thinks he signs one thing and signs another and gives up his freedom of choice in the future as to who he represents. We don’t have oversight at the moment on the players when it comes to that.”
The coaches are clearly resentful of how NIL is being implemented, and they are not afraid to push for change. It will be interesting to see how this is dealt with in the future. Securities and Exchange Commission Commissioner Greg Sankey and pac 12 commissioner George Kliavkov went to Washington, D.C. earlier this month to push the federal government to take action, which could end up if power brokers in college athletics can’t come together on the case.
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