Nick Saban

Pay bumps coming for Saban, staff?


During his five years at Alabama, Nick Saban and his ever-evolving coaching staff has led the Crimson Tide back to preeminent status on the national stage, cleaning up the squalor left by the decade-long Shula-Franchione-DuBose triad.  And the Mike Price embarrassment.

Since being officially named head coach Jan.3, 2007, Saban’s Tide has won 55 games — versus just four SEC losses the last four years — and two BcS titles.  And four No. 1 recruiting classes in the past five years, which has set the table for yet another season in which Saban’s squad will enter a year deep inside the preseason polls.

How much is all of that success worth?  In 2011, and before Saban’s third title as a college head coach, the number was pegged at just over $4.8 million.  In 2012?  Go north, old committee men.

According to the Birmingham News, the compensation arm of the University of Alabama Systems board of trustees will meet Monday to discuss the contracts of two newly-hired Saban assistants — offensive coordinator Doug Nussmeier and outside linebackers coach Lance Thompson.  Additionally — warning ! alliteration ahead!!! — the compensation committee’s conference call will consider, the News writes, “contract amendments for head coach Nick Saban and seven of his assistants.”

One of the “seven… assistants” is defensive coordinator Kirby Smart, who at $850,000 was one of the highest-paid assistants for his job title last season.  Smart also oversaw a title-winning defense that finished 2011 No. 1 in nearly every major statistical defensive category.  Based on the performance of “his” defense, Smart surely should get a salary bump.  As (rightly) will the other holdovers from the crystal-hoisting staff.

The question is, will — or, more to the point, should — Saban get the compensation committee bump?  In 2011, Mack Brown was the highest-paid coach in America at nearly $5.2 million.

Symbolic or not, and probably in spite of what he actually cares about, it’s time for the financials to match the reality that most don’t or won’t want to acknowledge: Nick Saban is the best college football coach in the country.

Check the numbers; the gag reflex will soon pass, after the biases are left at reality’s doorstep.  He is, you see, regardless of what you don’t want is to be.

(Editor’s note: Jimmy Sexton did not contribute in any way, shape or form to the creation of this post.)

In Baker Mayfield, Texas set to face yet another QB who wanted to be a Longhorn

Baker Mayfield
Associated Press

Jameis WinstonJohnny ManzielAndrew LuckRobert Griffin IIIJ.T. Barrett. Oh, don’t mind me. Just recounting the number of quarterbacks with ties to the Texas football program that never received a sniff from Bevo’s famous snout.

Add another to the list, perhaps the most inexplicable of all: Baker Mayfield.

Mayfield played at Lake Travis High School in Austin, a powerhouse program in a state that specializes in them. Lightly recruited out of high school (he reportedly held only an offer from Florida Atlantic), Mayfield and his family reached out to the nearby program to see if they’d take him as a walk-on.

They said no.

“They told us he had five scholarship quarterbacks, so there wasn’t any need of ‘Bake’ coming out there,” James Mayfield, Baker’s father, told George Schroeder of USA Today. “I popped off that they had five scholarship quarterbacks that couldn’t even play for Lake Travis. That’s where our relationship stalled out.”

On one hand, it utterly boggles the mind why Texas would decline a successful high school quarterback willing to pay his own way on to the team, especially considering the state of the position at the time. On the other, one would see why Mack Brown‘s staff would pass on a kid with only an offer from FAU who says UT’s quarterbacks couldn’t start for his high school team.

Instead, Texas signed Tyrone Swoopes and Mayfield enrolled at Texas Tech. He won the starting job as a true freshman, transferred to Oklahoma, walked on and then won the starting job there.

And now he’s set to face the hometown team he at one time wished he could play for.

Mayfield has completed 88-of-135 throws for 1,382 yards with 13 touchdowns and three interceptions – good for a 178.52 passer rating, which ranks fifth nationally – while adding 138 yards and four scores on the ground. His counterpart, redshirt freshman Jerrod Heard, has connected on 42-of-76 passes for 661 yards with two touchdowns and two interceptions (131.74 passer rating) to go with a team-leading 67 carries for 318 yards and three touchdowns.

“As perverse as all this has been, he’s where he wanted to be,” James Mayfield said. “He’s living his dream. If he had to do it all over again, he’d do it, with the same outcome.”

Appalachian State announces five-year extension for head coach Scott Satterfield

Scott Satterfield
Associated Press

One day after it was revealed its head coach was the second-lowest paid in college football, Appalachian State announced a five-year contract extension for head coach Scott Satterfield.

“We have the right coach leading our football program in Scott Satterfield,” Appalachian State AD Doug Gillin said in a statement. “In nearly three years as head coach, he has stayed true to his convictions, built the program the right way and set Appalachian State football up for sustainable success both in the Sun Belt Conference and at the national level.”

Satterfield had earned $375,000 annually, ahead of only Louisiana-Monroe’s Todd Berry at $360,000 a year.

Satterfield, 42, is 14-14 in his third season at the Boone, N.C., school. He led the Mountaineers to a 7-5 mark in their debut Sun Belt season, and has the club at 3-1 to start the 2015 campaign.

“It’s exciting for my family and me to know that we’re going to be at Appalachian for the foreseeable future,” Satterfield added. “I’m living a dream by being the head coach at my alma mater and can’t wait to continue to work hard to help this program reach heights that it has never reached before.”