Blog Entry

Saban says Tide will offer four-year scholarships

Posted on: February 29, 2012 12:45 pm

Posted by Jerry Hinnen

Alabama was one of 30 BCS conference schools to recently vote against NCAA legislation that would allow -- though not mandate -- schools to offer multiple-year scholarships over the previous system of annual scholarship renewals. And the Tide football program had declined to offer them this past February, with Nick Saban citing lawsuits issued during the previous era of multiple-year scholarships as reason for the program's opposition.

Despite that stance, Saban told the Tuscaloosa News in a Tuesday story that the Tide would join Auburn and Florida (and, with the legislation's survival of the override vote, likely the rest of the SEC) in offering four-year scholarships starting with the 2013 class.

"We're going to offer four-year scholarships," Saban said. "Our whole conference is going to do it, all the schools, I think. And we're happy to do it."

Though we're skeptical a program truly "happy" to offer four-year scholarships would instead vote to prevent anyone from offering those scholarships, themselves included, Saban again referred to the legal ramifications when explaining the opposition of "some of the schools."

"We had the (four-year) rule years ago, and there were legal challenges to it," Saban said. "So we changed to the one-year scholarship then. I think that was why some of the schools had concerns." 

A four-year scholarship would conceivably make it more difficult for Saban to oversign in February and then "cut" players afterwards -- the Tide have seen widespread departures between spring practice and the start of fall camp each of the last several years under Saban -- but he forcefully denied either cutting players or that the new scholarships would have any impact on that issue at any school.

"We don't cut players," Saban said. "I don't know anyone who does. So I don't think that's an issue ... The player will still have to be academically eligible. He will still have to obey team rules and regulations. And the player is still going to have the same rights and the same appeals process that he has now."

Saban is entirely correct that just because School X has committed its four-year promise in writing doesn't mean Player Y is going to be able to skate through four years of school without worrying about the consequences. (He's also right that this could conceivably lead to some legal appeals here and there.) But given the ease with which schools have dismissed players on one-year scholarships in the past -- it's surprising to hear Saban say he "doesn't know anyone" who cuts players, given that SEC West rival Bobby Petrino declined to renew the scholarships of five different players just last year -- we disagree that nothing has changed.

Even if having a promise of four years' worth of education in writing is still just a promise, that's more commitment from their new schools than those players have gotten before.

Keep up with the latest college football news from around the country. From the opening kick of the year all the way through the offseason, has you covered with this daily newsletter. View a preview.

Get College Football updates on Facebook   


Since: Jan 3, 2007
Posted on: March 5, 2012 12:49 am

Saban says Tide will offer four-year scholarships

Where is Alabama ranked on the US News & World Report list of college rankings? I haven't seen the recent ranking.
75th.  Probably higher than your high school.
Next stupid question?

Since: Apr 25, 2011
Posted on: March 4, 2012 4:25 pm

Saban says Tide will offer four-year scholarships

You continue to think that the entire rest of the world is going to march to the beat of the "no bending" drum you preach, when in reality the majority of the world does bend rules that dont suit their needs or wants. I imagine you yourself have done so and not even realized it. The majority of all coaches are getting away with a bend here or there, hence the secondary violations that get reported, and for every one reported you can bet there is probably 2 or 3 that dont. These are rules that get bent, but not officially broken and dont really count towards out and out cheating, just a bending of the rules that can get you into deeper water if a true investigation ever happens and the punishement can be more severe if they choose to include the total number of them. Those with large amounts should be looked at as maybe having bigger issues. tOsu had alot of them, and come to find out a lot more to look at that went with those.

While these rule benders do cause a bit of new rules to be enforced, the overall look on those benders is that they are just skirting the edge, and they all do it to an extent. No one is asking you to applaud anything they do, but if you choose to follow anything in life, you will applaud someone that has bent the rules in one way or another as all sports figures do it in some way to get to the top of their game. No one at the top is worthy of sainthood, not even the Popes of the world according to the news out of the Catholic church, so just know that you cannot get to the top without breaking or bending a few rules somewhere.

I try to live my life by a certain set of rules that i was taught and it has failed me at times being the kind of person that would not intentionally screw over another person. I have been left out of promotions due to not having that killer instinct that comes with skirting the rules at times to get ahead.  My philosophy changed a few years back when I got tired of being the nice guy "who always finishes last" and i developed a sense of killer in myself that would attain me the things i had worked hard for all my life, but never been able to acheive. I now employ several of my old bosses and live a lifestyle that i so richly deserve, due to not letting something like breaking a few eggs get in my way of acheiving my goals in life. I dont think I am a bad person for doing the things that i did to get ahead and have lots of employees who look to me for guidance and support daily. Without me they would be out of a job and looking at possibly one of the worst times in the history of this country, so do i feel bad for bending a few rules to get here.....NO in fact i would do it all over again and never look back because at the end of the day i am effecting good things on others lives by keeping them in a job.

Since: Mar 18, 2009
Posted on: March 4, 2012 11:11 am

Saban says Tide will offer four-year scholarships

Yes, I do know that "Ricky Bobby" is a fictional and pathetically comical character, but some of our more passionate associates act as though his "character" descended from heaven, and they cling to his "If you ain't first, you're last" credo as if it were the 11th Commandment (possibly the 1st).

And though I feel certain you are a good man, father, brother, son, neighbor or friend, your insistence on defining yourself by associating with a championship sports program requires that you attempt to equate "bending the rules" to the path of several mega successful folks in our culture.  You gain no integrity by trying to justify people's actions that ignore everyone else's guidelines. 

Whether they are "cheating" or just squeezing the lemon dry is pretty much a matter of semantics.  Both of us know the INTENT is to force more room for themselves than the specified (agreed to) dimensions call for.  Would you buy a house, where each room is built by a different contractor, and all of them want to impress you by making their room bigger than the specs call for?  Sooner or later, the inspector (rules book) shows up with the actual dimensions of the house and lot as somebody gets screwed out of their space and somebody else gets fined or loses their license.  "Aww shucks, Judge, I just wanted to build the nicest and biggest possible room for my customer." 

If Bill Gates and Warren Buffet have been cheaters or just immoral or unethical, does the fact that they have tons of money mean we should applaud their wrongdoings as an integral part of the plan for success?  Just because lots of people cheat on their taxes and exceed the speed limit and rarely follow their doctor's advice to the letter, doesn't mean they are to be admired or even accepted.  All it means is that they/we ignore rules.  BUT, to excuse that is to applaud and reward bad behavior.  It is really that simple.

Sadly, some influences in our culture encourage us to believe that living on the edge and always pushing posted limits is where all the "cool" people hang out.  We are bored by those of us who do things the right way, and entertained by those of us who don't.  Sometimes the ones, who don't follow the rules, don't because they are just too dumb to learn or remember rules.  They are clowns and entertain us with their stupidity and the damge they cause to themselves and to others as they bumble through each scene.  Others who don't follow rules, do so because they are "smartly" looking for an easier or quicker route to their goal or any advantages (that may go unnoticed) over their associates or competitors.  They are "cool," because they are controversial and entertain us by thumbing their noses at accepted practices or traditional values.

They do cause rules to be written or edited to address their bent ways.  And as you agree, rules are written for folks that find a way to skirt existing rules (loopholes).  And to really believe that anything is alright as long as you don't get caught is just stupidly pitiful. So, do we end up with more and more rules and extra teams of lawyers, or do we nip bad behavior and bad intentions in the bud by more effectively pusnishing those of us who insist on buggering the rest of us?

My vote is obviously that we make it hurt, when folks continuously refuse to go along with the spirit of the system they serve.  Blackballing a few HC's would get the attention of the rest of them.  But, as long as us fans remain the stupidest creatures on the planet, we will continue to be reinforced with being entertained and fed as the only requirements for lifelong happiness our feeble minds can imagine.  Here's to us!  Great work, guys!

Since: Feb 11, 2009
Posted on: March 4, 2012 6:27 am

Saban says Tide will offer four-year scholarships

If Alabama, Florida, and Auburn are going to do it, you can pretty well bet that the rest of the SEC is going to do it.  There were always be abuses of the system, be it four-year or one-year scholarships.  I went to school myself during the era of four-year scholarships, and while they offered certain protections for players, they also offered players the opportunity for abuse.  Some guys definitely got the idea that a four-year dealm gave them the chance to push the envelope on academics and comportment.  My own son had to grapple with the scholarship system when he was an athletic coach at the collegiate level.  I think if I were to ask him which is better overall, he would just shrug his shoulders.  I would agree that if four-year deals will end the oversigning, then maybe it's time has come again.

Since: Apr 25, 2011
Posted on: March 3, 2012 11:28 pm

Saban says Tide will offer four-year scholarships

And Ricky Bobby is not a god.

I forgot to address this one. He is fictional and not a real person, you do know that right? No one in Nascar is named Ricky Bobby, but there are plenty of morons like him in this world and all of them dont reside in the south or like Nascar.

Since: Apr 25, 2011
Posted on: March 3, 2012 11:25 pm

Saban says Tide will offer four-year scholarships

Cheating aka pushing the envelope aka skirting the rules does afford those who do it advantages.

Skirting the fine lines of rules and cheating are two very different ends of the spectrum. Oversigning is not against any rules written in the NCAA rulebook. Letting a kid  go from his scholarship due to rule A,B or C that has been broken is not cheating. Letting a kid walk on signing day due to the limit being set at 25 by the SEC and you have already taken the top kids in your recruiting class is not cheating wither, so not sure how you equate those as cheating, but maybe you should re-evaluate your thinking to a more truthful measure of the word.
The fact that new rules must be written to address these creative law breakers is proof their intent was/is not honorable.

This is why we have rules, so you think this is different from the rest of the world how? The world revolves around rules being broken and new rules put in place to stop those who would try to get around the rules we currently have, eventually all we will have is a rule for every rule that was a rule for every rule that has ever been broken and if you can follow that you will understand what I am trying to say. You think rules are in place because they wanted them to be there? nope, its because someone tried to get away with something and got caught, so they made a rule, but skirting the fine lines between breaking them and not breaking them is not cheating if you dont break them.

Nice role models for our young. Very nice. BTW, NASCAR is not a college game. And Ricky Bobby is not a god.

I would say they are, one is a 4 time Nascar Champion and 3rd in the wins column all-time, the other is a 3 time championship winner as a crew chief and was a team owner in Nascar for several years. What you perceive as wrong is the way of the world for successful people, those who have seen that in order to strive to be the best, you have to skirt the fine lines of right and wrong sometimes in order to gain a slight advantage. Ask Warren Buffett if he has done anything in his life that he felt might have been a bit risky or slightly dishonest and he will say yes, but yet he is one fo the worlds richest men. Bill Gates was dishonest to the core in his original endeavours starting Microsoft, but he is one of the worlds richest men today because he skirted the lines a bit the gain an advantage. Sometimes that is the difference between winners and job seekers. I can cite you examples of this all day long, so just know that its ok to be a rebel from time to time and play on the edge of right and wrong, as long as you dont go into the wrong territory you will be fine.

Since: Mar 18, 2009
Posted on: March 3, 2012 4:39 pm

Saban says Tide will offer four-year scholarships

We will just have to agree to disagree. Cheating aka pushing the envelope aka skirting the rules does afford those who do it advantages. The fact that new rules must be written to address these creative law breakers is proof their intent was/is not honorable. Nice role models for our young. Very nice. BTW, NASCAR is not a college game. And Ricky Bobby is not a god.

Since: Mar 7, 2008
Posted on: March 3, 2012 1:43 pm

Saban says Tide will offer four-year scholarships

Saban says Tide will offer 4 year scholarships....... to all of those kids that he knows he is cutting loose just hours before Tuscaloosa Oversigning Day...aka National Signing day.

Since: Feb 17, 2008
Posted on: March 3, 2012 11:51 am

Saban says Tide will offer four-year scholarships

I think this unspectactular (and quite defensive) response speaks volumes about your representation of the fine state of AL. 

"Have you ever heard of Condelisa Rice"....c'mon guy....who cares. You have a grad, from an AL institution, that has made something of her life? Nice reference, but no one really cares.

It'll never change......stereotypes exist for a reason, and that's because they are, by and large, accurate. If you let all the negativity affect your life, than I suggest moving somewhere else. Otherwise, accept the fact that you have a poor educational system, and your demographics are also on the lower end of the spectrum.

Where is Alabama ranked on the US News & World Report list of college rankings? I haven't seen the recent ranking.

Since: Dec 2, 2006
Posted on: March 3, 2012 10:14 am

Saban says Tide will offer four-year scholarships

You know nothing about Alabama, our class, or the education of our people.  It is sort of fun at the top because no matter what people say, they are saying it from below you.  Have you ever heard of Condelisa Rice?  Graduated from Alabama.  She sort of works in Washington D.C. doing.....I don't know, something....say....important, not really sure you know because I am from Alabama and all.  Heee Haww! LOL
Roll Tide!

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or