Kliff Kingsbury jabs Nick Saban over 10-second proposal


Nick Saban is becoming the face and fall guy of the NCAA’s newest proposal that would allow defenses 10 seconds to substitute before offenses can snap the football. In theory, the rule would slow down hurry-up offenses, and Saban and Bret Bielema are arguing for the rule under the umbrella of player safety.

Related: UNC coach takes five-star jab at Nick Saban

We’ve heard from several SEC coaches on the matter, and Steve Spurrier was the first coach in the country to single out Nick Saban by name, calling it the ‘Saban Rule’ and saying it’s ridiculous.

ESPN Outside the Lines asked Texas Tech head coach Kliff Kingsbury directly what Saban’s influence is over the rule.

Q: “How much of Nick Saban’s self-interest do you think is at work here? And how much is honest consideration of player safety?”

A: [Laughs] “I mean he showed up to the meeting and made it be known, and I know that the last three losses he’s had have been against, you know, some up-tempo teams. So, I’ll just kinda leave it at that.

“I was surprised that it got that far to be honest,” he continued. “And to put it under the guise of player safety when like everybody said there is no empirical data to back anything even close to that.”

Saban’s last three losses came against Oklahoma and Auburn during the 2013 season and 2012 Texas A&M; Kingsbury was the Aggies’ offensive coordinator that season.

The Playing Rules Oversight Panel votes on the rule March 6, and if passed, the rule would be taken into the affect this coming season.

Photo Credit: John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports



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  • The reason these types of comments keep coming out is because Saban has been silent on the topic He just needs to come out and talk about it, how the meeting in Indy happened, who initiated it, etc. This is the same reason the Texas job kept coming up earlier this year, because he never addressed it and put it to rest. I think that once he speaks about it, the actual rule will be continue to be discussed, but it being tied back to him and the supposed jabs will stop.

    • He put the Texas job to rest like 3 or 4 times but I get what you mean and agree. But it still won’t stop the media or other coaches from saying the same exact things.

      • He never really addressed it over the week period where it generated the most talk (at least from what I remember). He had a new contract offer from Alabama that was not signed and people were starting to worry, and never made a public statement until after news was out that Strong was offered the job. He then said he had been busy recruiting and that he wasn’t aware of everything going on. I find that highly suspect. I never thought he was going to take it, but rather that he was using it as leverage for more money. His agent botched that one as
        far as public perception goes.

  • Make no mistake: everything Saban does or says is for the end goal of improving his team’s chances of winning. Whether it’s using safety as a facade for this 10-second rule, oversigning and then processing players to get under the magic 85, etc., he just wants his team to win games. You gotta hand it to him, he has dedication to winning that is almost unmatched, if at all.

    • This is certainly true, and it is his job to do anything within his power (& within the rules) to win games for Alabama. I don’t so much mind that he wants this rule passed, it is his dishonest guise of “player safety” as his reason for it. If he would just come out & say that the up-tempo offenses frustrate him, & he wants a rule to slow them down, I’d respect it more. And then, of course, there’s Big Bert whose offending just about everyone…..

      • Big Bert is just an idiot. I’ve never liked him. He used to bash the SEC religiously when he was at Wisconsin

      • I would respect him more, too, if he said “the HUNH gives offenses an unfair advantage and should be outlawed.” Of course, the respect would be for his honesty. I’d lose respect at the same time because he’d be just a whiny baby if he actually said that and nobody would consider changing the rule. By hiding behind player safety, he tries to make himself appear to be standing up for a noble cause all while trying to trick the rules committee. Slimy, IYAM.

    • Just like Pinkel and Sumlin are against the rule. Strictly self interest. Muscahamp’s comments are the most valid on the topic…

      • Muschamps comments: 1. He did a study (anyone can claim they studied, but who can defend their conclusions?, that where science is, not in the studying) His conclusions don’t equal justification for taking control of the pace of the game away from the team in possession. If Muschamp wants to control the pace of the game he already has a time honored method, 4 plays in a row with no first down.

  • We were all wondering what KK was thinking??!! Not so much.

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