Saban-Fisher squabble over NIL highlights new college football era

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Jimbo Fisher

I have to giggle at all the current chatter about the supposed chaos in college football.

The Alabama coach says that Texas A&M bought all their players.

The A&M coach fires back, saying the Bama coach is narcissistic.

The SEC steps in and reprimands both for publicly criticizing fellow member institutions.

My guess is behind the scenes, the SEC is laughing … all the way to the bank.

In May, television networks are already speculating about what Nick Saban and Jimbo Fisher will say in July at SEC Media Days in Atlanta.

Texas A&M vs. Alabama in October? Mark your calendar and make sure you are watching on an SEC TV network near you.

The chaos in college football boils down to this: Coaches no longer control it.

Remember the days when schools could block a a player from transferring to another? Remember when a player had to sit out a year when transferring?


Players are not only transient; they are wealthy.

Just like the coaches. Just like Nick Saban.

He left Michigan State for more money and a better job at LSU. He left LSU for a ton of cash thrown his way by the Miami Dolphins. After two years, he was back in the college game at Alabama.

Saban said he was going to stay in Miami but left.

Oh well.

Welcome to America, the land of opportunity.

Nick Saban

And so it is for the players at an Historically Black College and University in Jackson, Mississippi.

Jackson State’s quarterback has a NIL deal with Gatorade. Their five star signee, Travis Hunter, signed a deal with African American coffee company J5 Caffe.

Isn’t this a great country?

What many college coaches want is the way it used to be. You know, when they make all the cash. They tell everybody else what to do.

The NCAA itself is having the same issues. They are irrelevant.

When yours truly was a kid (a long time ago), the NCAA used to control TV with an iron fist. Each week, there was one college game on the tube.

It was archaic.

But that was the mighty NCAA. They ran the show. A guy by the name of Walter Byers ran the world (at least we thought) with an iron first for 37 years.

For many years, the lead NCAA investigator was a guy named David Berst. If he was talking about your school, you shuddered.

It was the equivalent of having Jim Cantore in your town on Labor Day weekend. He was only there for one reason.

These days we hear from coaches that something must be done about NIL.

“It will destroy the game.”

“It will destroy the locker room.”

“Let’s get the federal government involved.”

That’s right. Washington DC solves problems…

In the meantime, everything about college football is changing, because everything about the world is changing.

So, you adapt and improvise.

Alabama’s coach has done it. In the transfer portal, the Crimson Tide signed Georgia Tech’s All-ACC running back, Georgia’s best wide receiver and Vanderbilt’s best offensive lineman.

The rich just got richer, and that’s the problem with NIL.

A place like Texas A&M, that hasn’t won a national championship since 1939 has visions of doing so. They’ve been rich with cash but not trophies.

Alabama doesn’t like it. The big red Elephant is threatened.

Oh well.

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Ed Daniels

WGNO Sports Director/106.1 FM

Ed is a New Orleans native, born at Baptist Hospital. He graduated Rummel High School, class of 1975, and subsequently graduated from Loyola University. Ed started in TV in 1977 as first sports intern at WVUE Channel 8. He became Sports Director at KPLC TV Channel 7 in Lake Charles in 1980. In 1982 he was hired as sports reporter…

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