The big topic coming out of SEC Media Days: Day 3 was the idea that NFL Draft grades possibly distracted Alabama’s preparations for Ohio State in the College Football Playoff. Saban offered this possibility to the national media today, and the national media immediately pounced on it.

Of course, Alabama lost to the underdog Ohio State team, and much of the national media took today’s comments as an excuse for the playoff loss back in January.

Dan Wolken, USA TODAY:

Here’s a hint for Alabama coach Nick Saban, who used part of his time with the news media Wednesday to theorize about what went so wrong for the Crimson Tide last season in the three weeks between their conference championship game victory and their College Football Playoff flop.

No Nick, it wasn’t because your underclassmen received NFL draft grades and the ones who got good news were no longer interested in playing hard or risking injury.

No Nick, it wasn’t because you played an up-tempo offense and your team ran out of gas.

Here’s what happened. Ohio State happened. Urban Meyer happened.

Jason McIntyre, The Big Lead:

In defense of Saban: Sure, some players probably see “2nd round” and think dollar signs and future and what shredding your Achilles or absorbing a knockout blow might do for the future. I remember seeing Collins have an rough game.

But how could Saban know? Was it something he specifically saw? Is he implying that players didn’t want to get in front of the tank that is Cardale Jones?

To me, it reeks of an excuse six months after getting beat up by the underdog Buckeyes.

John Taylor, College Football Talk:

The solution to that “problem,” per Saban, is for the NFL to not release the draft grades until the player has played his last game. That would mean the NFL would need to push back the deadline for declaring for the draft from Jan. 15 to a week to 10 days later.

One thought on this: didn’t Ohio State’s players also receive their NFL draft grades around that same time? Just thinking out loud. Spitballin’, if you will.

It’s probably an overreaction by the members of the media, but overreacting is basically what the media does on a daily basis today. Do you agree with the criticism?

UPDATE: Saban addressed the criticism during a sitdown with the SEC Network crew live on television: