Saban: Bama Doesn't Need Advantage on Defense

Published on 5-Mar-2014 by Stacey Mickles

Football - NCAA    NCAA Football Daily Update

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Saban: Bama Doesn't Need Advantage on Defense

Nick Saban has fired back at critics who said he wanted the '10-second rule' to pass due to his defense struggling against up-tempo, no-huddle offenses.

He's got mucho firing to do, though, as the attempt will forever be known as the 'Saban rule.'

"Everybody seems to know what I'm thinking. Everybody seems to know all kinds of stuff about me without ever talking to me, without know the circumstances about what happened," Saban claimed. "I'm not trying to create an advantage for the defense. I don't even think we need an advantage. Why do we need an advantage? If you look at the statistics, we've been playing better than most."

Yes, you have, coach. But other statistics show there's no data yet to support the theory that up-tempo offenses are the cause of more defensive injuries.

"Look, I had nothing to do with the 10-second rule. I was asked by the rules committee and the officials to come and speak to [them] relative to pace of play. Were there safety issues involved in that and is there a game administrative problem with that? So I went and did that. I didn't vote on the committee. I didn't offer any solutions to the problems. I just not just gave my opinion, but presented a lot statistical data that would support the fact that pace of play is creating a lot longer games and a lot more plays in games."

If those statistics are there, it's time to share.

The Crimson Tide coach is usually much more coy than he's been in this controversy. He was front and center on the issue as early as 2012, when the specter of playing Oregon's rapid-fire attack was a very real possibility. Is it any wonder he's got skeptics on his involvement here?

But if you look at where Saban's defenses have ranked over the years, you can't argue with what he was saying. The Tide defense has been at or near the top statistically since he's been at Alabama. 

It just makes him look bad that he supported a rule to slow down an offense that his defenses sometimes had trouble with. 

A rule by the way, that was shot down Wednesday by the NCAA. Now, we're going to see what kind of defensive genius Nick Saban really is. 

Hey Coach, if you can't beat 'em join 'em.

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