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Texas A&M Football

ESPN's Ryan McGee shares how portal & NIL rules led Saban to retire

January 19, 2024
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During Friday morning's edition of TexAgs Radio, writer and SEC Network personality Ryan McGee joined to offer his thoughts on the early returns of the Mike Elko era. McGee also discussed Nick Saban's retirement and why it's emblematic of the current CFB landscape.



Key notes from Ryan McGee interview

  • The challenge of the head coaching job is that the job never ends. That is why Nick Saban retired. We don't see guys coaching in their 60s and 70s anymore. Still, the job is not too hard for Mike Elko. He is a detailed guy. He understands the transfer portal. He is also just a good guy. I grew up in North Carolina. There are sad people there because he is no longer at Duke.
     
  • The thing about Jimbo Fisher is he was all in on being a Texan but not doing the things of college football in Texas. Elko is a master at that. I like Ross Bjork. I last saw him on Texas A&M's campus during football season. With him moving on, it felt like a good move for everyone.
     
  • There has to be some sort of law with NIL and the transfer portal. There are no rules. You can't reel it all back in, but you can put bumpers on it. When the Sabans of the word are retiring or coaches leave for the NFL, it's because that’s easier. Those are words I never thought I would say.
     
  • They threw their hands up about NIL. There was not a plan. Now we are waiting on the government? We need to reel it. The reason Saban retired was that he didn't want to deal with this stuff. When you start running the biggest name coaches out of the sport, now you have a real problem.
     
  • The Alabama fanbase will cut Kalen DeBoer no slack. Bill Curry won the SEC, beat Auburn and got to the Sugar Bowl, and he still had a brick thrown through his window. A lot of people have said you don't want to be the guy who follows the guy. I did not know DeBoer well, but I got to know him at the National Championship. I am rooting for him.
     
  • I have been to College Station. I think the expectations will still be high. I don't think Elko would be fired after a transition year, but the kerosene may be poured on his feet.
     
  • I am a Tennessee alum. The coaching staff was ahead of schedule. The problem was people expected that this year. Brian Kelly got Notre Dame to a championship in year two or three. Those teams overachieved, and they still had work to do.
     
  • If the college football tooth fairy gave A&M nine wins this fall, they would take that in 2024 and expect more in 2025.
     
  • I worked in Minor League Baseball for one summer. I love MiLB. This book — "Welcome to the Circus on Baseball" — is a love letter to MiLB.
Discussion from...

ESPN's Ryan McGee shares how portal & NIL rules led Saban to retire

3,982 Views | 2 Replies | Last: 4 mo ago by TAMU74
Shoefly!
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AG
Saban was fine with the old way of paying players. Now Nil has caused a change in bidding for top players. He knows Bama can't keep up with Oil money. The analogy I read on another forum was Darrel Royal retired when the NCAA put a limit on scholarships.
TAMU74
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AG
Shoefly! said:

Saban was fine with the old way of paying players. Now Nil has caused a change in bidding for top players. He knows Bama can't keep up with Oil money. The analogy I read on another forum was Darrel Royal retired when the NCAA put a limit on scholarships.
This is true regarding Royal.
He could/would recruit the top HS players in Texas and many of them wouild never see the field.
Had they gone to another college they most likely would have played and had many memorable games.
Saban saw the writing on the wall and just didn't want to play the NIL/TP game at his age.
He made the correct move in getting out now.
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