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Thread: Saban leaving Dolphins, going to Bama

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    Member Frank Slade's Avatar
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    Default Saban leaving Dolphins, going to Bama

    Updated: Jan. 3, 2007, 10:59 AM ET

    After repeated denials, Saban takes Bama job
    ESPN.com news services


    Nick Saban has accepted an offer from Alabama to coach the Crimson Tide and left the Miami Dolphins on Wednesday, two weeks after declaring "I'm not going to be the Alabama coach."


    Jeff Zelevansky/Icon SMI

    Saban will return to the SEC, where he won a national championship with LSU .Saban told team owner Wayne Huizenga of his intentions via telephone and then informed all of his coaches by speakerphone that he was leaving to accept the Alabama position, a source told the South Florida Sun-Sentinel.



    Alabama made its formal offer to Saban on Monday after rumors swirled for weeks that the Crimson Tide were pursuing the former LSU coach. The offer, believed to run from eight to 10 years, is worth $35 million to $40 million, and includes many variables, ESPN's Chris Mortensen reported Monday.


    Saban had issued repeated denials that he was interested in coaching at Alabama, one of the most high-profile and high-pressure college coaching jobs in the country. He leaves the Dolphins with three years left on a deal worth approximately $4.5 million a year.


    Alabama began looking for a coach after firing Mike Shula on Nov. 27. The Tide finished the season 6-7, losing to Oklahoma State in the Independence Bowl.


    On Tuesday, Saban asked for and recevied more time from Dolphins owner Wayne Huizenga to make a decision.


    Huizenga remained optimistic Tuesday that Saban would return to Miami, and gave him until 10 a.m. Wednesday to make a decision.


    "I'm hoping he's leaning on staying," Huizenga was quoted as saying in the South Florida Sun-Sentinel. "I like Nick a lot and hope he's going to stay. I'm not upset. You just have to play this thing through."


    Huizenga has said he received repeated assurances from Saban late in the season that he would return in 2007. And Saban issued frequent public denials of interest in moving to Tuscaloosa, such as on Dec. 21, when he said: "I'm not going to be the Alabama coach."


    ESPN.com's Mark Schlabach and Len Pasquarelli contributed to this story

    ESPN

    So this make 3 openings already with a very possible fourth in Pittsburgh, and fifth if the Giants crash and burn in the playoffs.

    Why Not Us ?


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    Default Re: Saban leaving Dolphins, going to Bama

    That was pretty low of Saban, lying to everyone for two weeks and then not even having the balls to tell his boss or assistant coaches in person when he made his decision official.

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    Default Re: Saban leaving Dolphins, going to Bama

    Ummmm what?

    Mort on ESPN said the owner of the Dolphins was at Saban's home when the decision was made, and the owner pretty much made the decision for him. Saban said his heart was at the college level, but he would continue to coach for Miami and give it his all if the owner wanted him too. He was told to follow his heart and go back to coaching college.

    Too bad he lied two weeks ago, but saying he doesn't have balls because he didn't tell them in person is pretty far from the truth. Huizenga was a pretty major factor in the decision.

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    Default Re: Saban leaving Dolphins, going to Bama

    Quote Originally Posted by Since86 View Post
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    Ummmm what?

    Mort on ESPN said the owner of the Dolphins was at Saban's home when the decision was made, and the owner pretty much made the decision for him. Saban said his heart was at the college level, but he would continue to coach for Miami and give it his all if the owner wanted him too. He was told to follow his heart and go back to coaching college.

    Too bad he lied two weeks ago, but saying he doesn't have balls because he didn't tell them in person is pretty far from the truth. Huizenga was a pretty major factor in the decision.
    I'm going by the posted article, which says the owner and his coaches were informed via telephone.

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    Default Re: Saban leaving Dolphins, going to Bama

    After repeated denials, Saban takes Bama job

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    ESPN.com news services

    Nick Saban has accepted an offer from Alabama, leaving the Miami Dolphins two weeks after declaring "I'm not going to be the Alabama coach."
    Saban's agreement with Alabama is for eight years and a guaranteed $32 million, according to ESPN.com's Len Pasquarelli. Saban can earn an additional $700,000 to $800,000 annually in bowl-game bonuses.


    Saban told team owner Wayne Huizenga of his decision in a face-to-face meeting Wednesday morning. Saban then informed all of his coaches by speakerphone that he was leaving the franchise to coach Alabama. In a news conference at the Dolphins' facility, Huizenga told reporters he was not upset by Saban's departure.


    "It is what it is. We have to move forward," Huizenga said. "We want the best for Nick and [his wife] Terry. I like Nick a lot and think he could have won here. I'm a Nick Saban fan."
    As of late Wednesday morning, Saban was not yet headed to Tuscaloosa for a formal introduction.

    "All indications are that he's coming, but I know they're not in the air yet," an Alabama athletic department official told ESPN.com's Mark Schlabach.

    Saban repeatedly had issued denials that he was interested in coaching Alabama, one of the most high-profile and high-pressure college coaching jobs in the country. After he turned down the Tide in early December, the school offered the job to Rich Rodriguez, but he decided to stay at West Virginia.

    Alabama made a formal offer to Saban on Monday after rumors swirled for weeks that the Crimson Tide were continuing their pursuit of the former LSU coach. Saban, who spent five seasons in Baton Rouge before leaving for the NFL, was 48-16 at LSU and won the 2003 BCS national championship.

    He walks away from the Dolphins with three years left on a deal worth approximately $4.5 million a season.


    In the past, Huizenga has been persuasive when dealing with coaches. He talked Don Shula into retirement in 1996, talked Jimmy Johnson out of retiring three years later -- Johnson lasted one more season -- and was able to lure Saban to the pros in 2004 after other NFL teams had failed.

    But this time, Huizenga couldn't change Saban's mind.


    "First of all this was never about money," Huizenga said. "It's never been about money. Nick never talked to me about money. Nick never talked to me about an extension. I honestly believe this was not about money."

    Saban was 15-17 without a playoff appearance in his two seasons as Dolphins coach.

    "In my opinion, the Dolphins have always been about winning. I just want everyone to know that it's really all about winning now," Huizenga said. "I don't care what it takes or what it costs, we're going to make this a winning franchise -- sooner rather than later."

    Alabama began looking for a coach after firing Mike Shula on Nov. 27. The Tide finished the season 6-7, losing to Oklahoma State in the Independence Bowl.



    On Tuesday, Saban asked for and received more time from Huizenga to make a decision, yet Huizenga remained optimistic that Saban would remain with the Dolphins. Saban was given until 10 a.m. Wednesday to make a decision.
    Huizenga said his team's front office began the process of examining a search for a new coach, but he did not provide further details.


    Possible candidates to replace Saban include Chicago Bears defensive coordinator Ron Rivera, former Green Bay head coach Mike Sherman, San Diego Chargers offensive coordinator Cam Cameron, Indianapolis assistant head coach Jim Caldwell, Tennessee Titans offensive coordinator Norm Chow and Pittsburgh Steelers assistants Russ Grimm and Ken Whisenhut.

    The Arizona Cardinals and Atlanta Falcons are also seeking a new coach.


    The Dolphins' next coach will be their fourth in nine seasons, a big change for a franchise that had the same coach -- Don Shula -- for 26 years. Miami has failed to make the playoffs the past five seasons, the worst stretch in franchise history.

    The Dolphins are coming off their third losing season since 1969 and face a likely roster overhaul. With Daunte Culpepper still struggling to recover from reconstructive knee surgery in 2005, Miami remains unsettled at quarterback, a troublesome position since Dan Marino retired seven years ago. The team needs upgrades in almost every other area for a feeble offense and aging defense.

    Saban leaves behind the NFL's largest staff of assistants and general manager Randy Mueller, who might be given more responsibility under a new coaching regime.

    ESPN.com college football writer Mark Schlabach and NFL senior writer Len Pasquarelli contributed to this story. Information from The Associated Press also was used.
    http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/print...488&type=story
    They have it updated.

    BTW, I know you were going by the article, just saying the article wasn't correct.

  6. #6
    year of the black rainbow obnoxiousmodesty's Avatar
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    Default Re: Saban leaving Dolphins, going to Bama

    I caught part of the press conference this morning, and the Dolphins owner stated that Saban did in fact inform Huizenga in person of his intention to leave Miami. So part of the original article is bogus.

    That's a lot of money for Saban to turn down. I'm not surprised he took the job, even if he could have handled the whole situation much, much better.
    Take me out to the black, tell 'em I ain't coming back. Burn the land and boil the sea, you can't take the sky from me.

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    Default Re: Saban leaving Dolphins, going to Bama

    What do you want him to do, pull a Larry Brown and tell everyone which other team he'd rather coach in the middle of a season?

    There's "lying", and there's "denying something to the press because it isn't anyone's business right now."
    Why do the things that we treasure most, slip away in time
    Till to the music we grow deaf, to God's beauty blind
    Why do the things that connect us slowly pull us apart?
    Till we fall away in our own darkness, a stranger to our own hearts
    And life itself, rushing over me
    Life itself, the wind in black elms,
    Life itself in your heart and in your eyes, I can't make it without you


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    Default Re: Saban leaving Dolphins, going to Bama

    I agree with you Jay. What are coaches supposed to do when they are asked about another coaching prospect. There are only three things they can do.

    1) Say they are not interested all - say they are not taking the job. Of course this is fine if it's true. If it turns out to be false everyone cries bloody murder

    2) Simply say no comment - I refuse to answer any questions about other jobs. This sounds like the best approach in theory - but you know the media won't stop (I've seen press conferences where the media will ask 6 and 7 times in a 30 minute pressser) and they often interpret no comments to mean that yes they are interested in another job. Then of course you get the media starts asking the players, assistant coaches.

    3) the third approach is to be open and honest sorta like Larry Brown - the media loves this at first but then they turn it around. The fans hate this and the players are distracted by it.


    So you tell me the best approach. Because I don't know.

    Kinda like a couple of years ago, by boss asked me if I was interviewing for another job. I said no even though I had an interview the day before. I felt bad when I gave my two weeks notice a few days after denying I was interviewing.

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    Default Re: Saban leaving Dolphins, going to Bama

    Quote Originally Posted by Unclebuck View Post
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    I agree with you Jay. What are coaches supposed to do when they are asked about another coaching prospect. There are only three things they can do.

    1) Say they are not interested all - say they are not taking the job. Of course this is fine if it's true. If it turns out to be false everyone cries bloody murder

    2) Simply say no comment - I refuse to answer any questions about other jobs. This sounds like the best approach in theory - but you know the media won't stop (I've seen press conferences where the media will ask 6 and 7 times in a 30 minute pressser) and they often interpret no comments to mean that yes they are interested in another job. Then of course you get the media starts asking the players, assistant coaches.

    3) the third approach is to be open and honest sorta like Larry Brown - the media loves this at first but then they turn it around. The fans hate this and the players are distracted by it.


    So you tell me the best approach. Because I don't know.

    Kinda like a couple of years ago, by boss asked me if I was interviewing for another job. I said no even though I had an interview the day before. I felt bad when I gave my two weeks notice a few days after denying I was interviewing.
    I agree with what Saban did. He looked at his long term plans, his family, and his passion for the game before making a decision. Moving to Alabama was better then staying in Miami in every aspect in Saban's eyes. He'll make more money, get to coach college again (which he prefers over the NFL), and his decision is also based around his family.

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    Default Re: Saban leaving Dolphins, going to Bama

    http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/colum...pat&id=2718798

    Interesting read in reference to this.

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    Default Re: Saban leaving Dolphins, going to Bama

    I think that when you sign a contract, you should honor that contract. There would have been excellent opportunities 3 years from now if Saban really wanted to return to college football. What will he get from Alabama? Would someone really be too upset having $20 million or whatever he would have earned over 5 years with Miami vs. $30 million or whatever with Alabama? Oh, sorry, you can't buy that Hummer, sir! If you only made $10 million more, you might have been able to afford it! Come on! With the money he would have made at Miami with his current contract alone, he and his family would have been set for life.

    Admitedly, I am a Dolphins fan and I didn't like the Saban hire in the first place. The Dolphins would have been a playoff team if not for a bad decision with sticking with Culpepper so long, and would have been legitimate AFC title contenders had they picked up Brees instead. Still, they had potential going into next season. Now they will hire a new coach with a new playbook, and will be lucky to finish at .500. The re-building starts all over again, in part because someone decided not to honor their contract.

    It is better to offer a "no comment" than lie about your situation. I don't like how things were handled at all. Not fair to anyone that way.

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    Default Re: Saban leaving Dolphins, going to Bama

    Quote Originally Posted by joeyd View Post
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    I think that when you sign a contract, you should honor that contract.

    In theory that sounds great, but what about all the coahes who get fired before their contract is up. Fired for no other reason that they failed to win 10 games and a bowl game every year. Yes I know they get paid when they get fired but still. I don't have a real problem with coaching leaving prior to when their contract is up. Do you really want a coach who would rather be coaching some place else.

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    Default Re: Saban leaving Dolphins, going to Bama

    How exactly did he not honor the contract? I'm quite certain that if he were breaching the contract, Huizenga would've been all over that.

    Most likely, the contract had exit provisions that he, indeed, honored - I'm sure he wasn't allowed to leave for another NFL position, for example.

    These contracts are to stipulate the financial and other terms related to employment. The contract doesn't compell him to coach (e.g., make him a "slave" to the Dolphins for a certain number of years), but it does (most likely) restrict him from being employed by the competition. We are employed at will in this country, even if there is a contract. And of course, in this case if he chooses not to work for the Dolphins, they most likely won't be compelled to pay him.

    The contract may or may not have a provision that guarantees payment for the duration of the contract if the team terminates his employment, but even that can't be used to compel him to coach the team for a set number of years.

    Now to me, when a coach says they're going to coach someplace for a certain number of years and then they leave for greener pastures, I'm not happy with them for lying. They should honor their word. But from the contracts I've looked at in my career, they cover so many bizarre contingencies that I suspect that this entire scenario had a number of stipulations in the contract that Saban had to adhere to.

    One of the coaching clinics my dad and his coaching staff frequently attended had Lou Holtz at the keynote speaker one year. His speach was on loyalty. A year after that speach, Lou Holtz tore up his longterm contract with Minnesota to go to Notre Dame. It seemed his Minnesota contract had an "out clause" for one school - ND. Ah, the irony of it...
    Why do the things that we treasure most, slip away in time
    Till to the music we grow deaf, to God's beauty blind
    Why do the things that connect us slowly pull us apart?
    Till we fall away in our own darkness, a stranger to our own hearts
    And life itself, rushing over me
    Life itself, the wind in black elms,
    Life itself in your heart and in your eyes, I can't make it without you


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    Default Re: Saban leaving Dolphins, going to Bama

    Can Dolphin fans really be upset about this? It is not like his personnel and on field decisions were making them winners. Culpepper over Brees, staying with Culpepper when he was obviously hurting, relying on Harrington as your backup to a hurt quarterback, his best defensive player contemplating retirement. Not exactly a winning track record.

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    Default Re: Saban leaving Dolphins, going to Bama

    Quote Originally Posted by Jay@Section19 View Post
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    How exactly did he not honor the contract? I'm quite certain that if he were breaching the contract, Huizenga would've been all over that.

    Most likely, the contract had exit provisions that he, indeed, honored - I'm sure he wasn't allowed to leave for another NFL position, for example.

    These contracts are to stipulate the financial and other terms related to employment. The contract doesn't compell him to coach (e.g., make him a "slave" to the Dolphins for a certain number of years), but it does (most likely) restrict him from being employed by the competition. We are employed at will in this country, even if there is a contract. And of course, in this case if he chooses not to work for the Dolphins, they most likely won't be compelled to pay him.

    The contract may or may not have a provision that guarantees payment for the duration of the contract if the team terminates his employment, but even that can't be used to compel him to coach the team for a set number of years.

    Now to me, when a coach says they're going to coach someplace for a certain number of years and then they leave for greener pastures, I'm not happy with them for lying. They should honor their word. But from the contracts I've looked at in my career, they cover so many bizarre contingencies that I suspect that this entire scenario had a number of stipulations in the contract that Saban had to adhere to.

    One of the coaching clinics my dad and his coaching staff frequently attended had Lou Holtz at the keynote speaker one year. His speach was on loyalty. A year after that speach, Lou Holtz tore up his longterm contract with Minnesota to go to Notre Dame. It seemed his Minnesota contract had an "out clause" for one school - ND. Ah, the irony of it...
    I am missing the irony.

    I just finished his book, and what he has in the book is exactly what he has said every time I heard him speak. He loved his job but he always dreamed of coaching at ND, and he made sure his contract had a out clause for one school......Notre Dame.

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    Default Re: Saban leaving Dolphins, going to Bama

    Then she shouldn't make speaches about "loyalty" when his contract has an out clause like that. He only had loyalty to himself/ his dream job. Not his current school or team of players he'd recruited.

    He had neither loyalty nor integrity, but he made a lot of $$$ on the speaking circuit pretending to have both.
    Why do the things that we treasure most, slip away in time
    Till to the music we grow deaf, to God's beauty blind
    Why do the things that connect us slowly pull us apart?
    Till we fall away in our own darkness, a stranger to our own hearts
    And life itself, rushing over me
    Life itself, the wind in black elms,
    Life itself in your heart and in your eyes, I can't make it without you


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    Default Re: Saban leaving Dolphins, going to Bama

    Quote Originally Posted by Jay@Section19 View Post
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    Then she shouldn't make speaches about "loyalty" when his contract has an out clause like that. He only had loyalty to himself/ his dream job. Not his current school or team of players he'd recruited.

    He had neither loyalty nor integrity, but he made a lot of $$$ on the speaking circuit pretending to have both.


    Give me a freaking break.

    Coaches are shown no loyalty at all. A coach can win 9 or 10 games but the school decide they just plain dont like them (for whatever reason, legit or not) and they can breach the contract. Where is the loyalty in that?

    Try reading Holtz's book some time. The University of Minnesota knew that Lou would be commited there, the only exception being in the ND job opened up. BOTH parties agreed to this being included in the contract. It is not like he lied to them. They knew all along that was his dream job and he would leave and take it if it opened up.

    I love how you say he only only loyalty to himself, I expect to see a thread from youchastizing every program that fires their coach just because someone better comes along or because they just want to go in a "different direction". Clearly they only have loyalty to "themselves". I mean, they did have a contract with that coach, right?

    Lou Holtz had plenty of loyalty and integrity, and was a damn good football coach on top of that.

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    Default Re: Saban leaving Dolphins, going to Bama

    What part of him leaving, especially when he had such a clause, isn't being loyal?

    Being loyal means you fulfill your obligations/duties. Which he did. He didn't leave for another program, which would have been unloyal. He left for the only one they said he could leave for. He fulfilled the terms of his contract, and was loyal to that contract.

    If you're talking about him leaving a year later, then only a coach that has had one coaching position is truly loyal. How often does that happen? It doesn't make the rest unloyal, or untrustworthy.

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    Default Re: Saban leaving Dolphins, going to Bama

    Quote Originally Posted by Since86 View Post
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    What part of him leaving, especially when he had such a clause, isn't being loyal?

    Being loyal means you fulfill your obligations/duties. Which he did. He didn't leave for another program, which would have been unloyal. He left for the only one they said he could leave for. He fulfilled the terms of his contract, and was loyal to that contract.

    If you're talking about him leaving a year later, then only a coach that has had one coaching position is truly loyal. How often does that happen? It doesn't make the rest unloyal, or untrustworthy.
    QFT

    Just random trivia, but has there even been a coach (at the college or pro level) who only coaches one team?

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    Default Re: Saban leaving Dolphins, going to Bama

    I don't care if he left or not.

    He shouldn't have been talking money on the speaking circuit painting himself as a picture of loyalty.

    Pay attention.

    Man gets in front of a bunch of his colleagues and says, "You should be loyal to your players, and here's why I am... Blah, blah, blah.

    Then a few months later he says to those players that he recruited, "Sorry, boys, my dream job is now open. Good luck with the rest of your lives."

    I'm sure he did lots of great things in his career. But loyalty is not a virtue of his, except that he's loyal to only himself.
    Why do the things that we treasure most, slip away in time
    Till to the music we grow deaf, to God's beauty blind
    Why do the things that connect us slowly pull us apart?
    Till we fall away in our own darkness, a stranger to our own hearts
    And life itself, rushing over me
    Life itself, the wind in black elms,
    Life itself in your heart and in your eyes, I can't make it without you


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    Default Re: Saban leaving Dolphins, going to Bama

    Quote Originally Posted by Jay@Section19 View Post
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    I don't care if he left or not.

    He shouldn't have been talking money on the speaking circuit painting himself as a picture of loyalty.

    Pay attention.

    Man gets in front of a bunch of his colleagues and says, "You should be loyal to your players, and here's why I am... Blah, blah, blah.

    Then a few months later he says to those players that he recruited, "Sorry, boys, my dream job is now open. Good luck with the rest of your lives."

    I'm sure he did lots of great things in his career. But loyalty is not a virtue of his, except that he's loyal to only himself.
    Pay attention.

    So is every other coach/GM/owner in all of sports.

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    Default Re: Saban leaving Dolphins, going to Bama

    If he left for another place other than ND, then there's a legit gripe, but he didn't. He left for the ONLY place they said he could leave for, so obviously they knew when hiring him that if he took go to ND, he was going to.

    He fullfilled his duties/obligations to his team and to the school. That's what loyalty is.

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    Default Re: Saban leaving Dolphins, going to Bama

    Quote Originally Posted by Since86 View Post
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    If he left for another place other than ND, then there's a legit gripe, but he didn't. He left for the ONLY place they said he could leave for, so obviously they knew when hiring him that if he took go to ND, he was going to.

    He fullfilled his duties/obligations to his team and to the school. That's what loyalty is.
    When Holtz took the job at Minnesota, he said he would spend the rest of his career there.

    Of course, he didn't tell anyone he had the "out" clause prior to leaving. The only people that knew were him and his agent, and probably the Minnesota AD. I think the "revisionist history" and publicity of his out-clause probably makes him look less slimy today.

    He did not come close to filling his obligation to the players he recruited. He did not tell them he would jump ship as soon as something better came along, even if "something better" was limited to just the ND job.

    I agree that almost all coaches are loyal only to themselves. That's why I was pointing this out in the first place. I am paying attention.
    Why do the things that we treasure most, slip away in time
    Till to the music we grow deaf, to God's beauty blind
    Why do the things that connect us slowly pull us apart?
    Till we fall away in our own darkness, a stranger to our own hearts
    And life itself, rushing over me
    Life itself, the wind in black elms,
    Life itself in your heart and in your eyes, I can't make it without you


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    Default Re: Saban leaving Dolphins, going to Bama

    Quote Originally Posted by Unclebuck View Post
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    I don't have a real problem with coaching leaving prior to when their contract is up. Do you really want a coach who would rather be coaching some place else.
    People don't realize that Saban was a guy who preached and expected integrity from his team. Now he wants to go and try to "shape" young men; presumably this means teaching them the same integrity that he displays. Maybe I'm old school, but a commitment should mean, well, that you are committed. I don't condone teams (or companies) from firing their employees unless they are grossly negligent or non-compliant in living up to their responsibilities. But the issue at hand is that this guy spent over a month basically lying to everyone, most importantly his players, when he could have taken the high road and at least offered no comment. This stuff about the press badgering him for an answer if he gave them a "no comment"...well...poor baby...I can't feel sorry for him, since handling the press is understood to be part of job. The bottom line is that he quit (after lying about not doing so).

    I can't say that I am crying up a storm that he is gone. I am a Dolphins fan but I have tried to look at this objectively. I was half-hoping he would stay to bring continuity to a team that could have turned the corner next season. Now that he is gone, I just hope old H. Wayne doesn't make a boneheaded decision. The best job is probably in Pittsburgh or Arizona now. He should get on his hands and knees and ask Don Shula to come back. The guy is still sharp. He was jettisoned after basically being forced to take on a bunch of prima donna free agents when H. Wayne tried to buy himself a Super Bowl. The team imploded and Shula got the blame. The game had not passed him by.

  25. #25
    Administrator/ The Real Jay ChicagoJ's Avatar
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    Default Re: Saban leaving Dolphins, going to Bama

    Joey, if it makes you feel any better, the Pittsburgh rumor mill has Cowher heading to Miami since you've basically already got his coaching staff in place and the Phins can afford to pay him and the Steelers.

    I don't think that will happen, but surely the Miami job is no lower than #2 in terms of desirability, if not a #1A/ #1B with the Pittsburgh job.
    Why do the things that we treasure most, slip away in time
    Till to the music we grow deaf, to God's beauty blind
    Why do the things that connect us slowly pull us apart?
    Till we fall away in our own darkness, a stranger to our own hearts
    And life itself, rushing over me
    Life itself, the wind in black elms,
    Life itself in your heart and in your eyes, I can't make it without you


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