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AJ McCarron: Saban ‘told me he’s not leaving’

AJ McCarron Nick Saban Getty Images

Well, that settles that.

Amidst rampant speculation that, when Mack Brown steps down/is forced out at Texas, Nick Saban would leave Tuscaloosa for Austin, the Alabama head coach’s starting quarterback took part in a televised interview as part of the postseason awards circuit.  Of course, the subject of Saban and the rumors connecting him to the Texas job came up.

Just as expected, AJ McCarron said he doesn’t foresee Saban leaving the Tide… if for nothing more than that’s not what the coach’s better half would want.  Oh, and that the coach has never lied to him before.

“I messed with Coach, [saying] he’s getting too old to start up again somewhere else,” McCarron said on ESPN’s “College Football Daily” from Walt Disney World. “He told me he’s not leaving. And I know Miss Terry [Saban’s wife] well enough; she runs that house. And she’s not allowing Coach to leave either. I think he’ll be at the University of Alabama for a little while.”

Saban has not addressed this latest round of speculation, which centers both on Texas making a push for the four-time title-winning coach and Saban’s agent using that interest as leverage in contract talks.  School officials are reportedly “getting nervous about the lack of response” on the contract front and that “the longer it goes unsigned the more uncomfortable UA officials grow.”

UA athletic director Bill Battle was asked Wednesday about the rumors, but would only say that both he and the coach are focused on recruiting and the Sugar Bowl matchup with Oklahoma.

Connecting Saban’s name to a potential opening with the Longhorns simply won’t go away, though, as evidenced by this tweet from Geoff Ketchum of Orangebloods.com late Thursday morning:

For those growing weary of the Brown/Saban/Texas ménage à trois, you should probably hunker down as I get the feeling this thing is about to kick into overdrive sooner rather than later…

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44 Responses to “AJ McCarron: Saban ‘told me he’s not leaving’”
  1. erockfox says: Dec 12, 2013 3:55 PM

    Dear AJ,
    In exactly 22 days, Nick Saban won’t give a rats ass about you.

    Sincerely,
    Life

  2. jtinnon2009 says: Dec 12, 2013 3:55 PM

    Interesting. Sounds like he might have lied to AJ and Matt Elam and a whole bunch of others, that is, of course, if the coach-vetting story has legs…

  3. louhudson23 says: Dec 12, 2013 3:55 PM

    Texas?.You step up when you leave…not two steps back….HE is home. First Playoff National Champion. HC Nick Saban Alabama Crimson Tide….after the Auburn debacle,there is unfinished business to attend to….had they won again,perhaps a new challenge vs unrealistic expectations might have come into play…not any more….

  4. harleyspoon says: Dec 12, 2013 4:02 PM

    However, Saban ought to leave while the gettin’ is good…If he doesn’t win the NC next year, those sorry Bamians will be backing up the moving van muy pronto!!

  5. 8to80texansblog says: Dec 12, 2013 4:06 PM

    Well technically Texas hasn’t made an offer yet so… he’s not quite lying… yet.

    But if the reports of a 10 yr $100mm contract are true… he’s gone…

  6. Deb says: Dec 12, 2013 4:21 PM

    Dear erockfox …

    Nick Saban has continued to look out for former Bama players long after they’ve left his program. When Rolando McClain ran into trouble with the Oakland Raiders, was cut from the program and woound up leaving the NFL, Saban arranged for him to return to Alabama as a student to work on his degree and get his head straight. The hope is that he’ll straighten out his life and eventually be able to return to the NFL.

    But by all means, continue pulling nonsense out of your backside if it makes you feel like the BMOC.

    Signed,

    Someone who actually pays attention to the way Saban treats his players

  7. vols84 says: Dec 12, 2013 4:22 PM

    I think he will stay, but why would he confide in his players about this situation? He wouldn’t so I don’t even buy into what Mr. Katherine Webb is saying here.

  8. coolhorn46 says: Dec 12, 2013 4:23 PM

    I’ve been a UT fan for decades, and make no mistake, like most of my fellow ‘Horn fans, I’d be really happy if Saban makes the move to Austin when Mack steps down this week.

    That being said, it’s a little off-putting for people to think that the University of Texas is putting all of its’ eggs in one basket. If the new head football coach is Nick Saban, great. However, I can think of well over a dozen head coaches out there at other schools who would do a great job with the Horns.

    I’m convinced that UT will have a fine new head football coach in a day or two. That coach’s last name may be Saban, but if it’s not, I’m okay with that too. The job in Austin is just too good not to pull a very attractive pool of candidates.

  9. harleyspoon says: Dec 12, 2013 4:26 PM

    Bill Battle knows all about that van backing up to the front door before he even knows he’s fired. it happened to him at U of Tennessee..I believe it was in 1976…Spoiled fans are mean motha hunchers when they go without for a minute or two…

  10. lbroberts123 says: Dec 12, 2013 4:26 PM

    Why should we believe McCarron? He’s done at Alabama anyway.

  11. suprmous says: Dec 12, 2013 4:32 PM

    A.J., he’s the same fellow who told many he wouldn’t leave for other places as well and need I go any further? He can tell you: the Easter Bunny has short ears but does that make it so, he can tell you that he isn’t a Type A Personality but does that make it so, he can tell you he knows of the exact time of the 2nd Comin but does that make it so; etc? When all’s said and done his track record speaks volumes. You and the rest of the Bama Faithful are spoiled on the fact that you expect him to deliver every year and that’s just not possible. Once he’s gone and fallen from grace you’ll survive. Should it come to pass that he not leave fine but just remember a leapord can’t change his spots for stripes.

  12. Deb says: Dec 12, 2013 4:41 PM

    Yes, suprmous, we’ll survive if Saban leaves Alabama. But will you survive if he doesn’t? You’re sooo invested in him leaving, I can’t imagine how heartbroken you’ll be if he stays LOL

  13. sparty0n says: Dec 12, 2013 4:52 PM

    Doesn’t mean a thing….

    Saban has been quoted before and it didn’t matter. Dude has NO loyalty.

  14. bamafan10 says: Dec 12, 2013 4:57 PM

    In all my years of watching football .. I have never in my life seen so many fans afraid of one coach .. This is amazing .. how the fear is sweeping the nation .. Saban is so far ahead of anything in the football world that it just scares the hell out of everyone to compete with him .. I don’t think anyone is going to ever rest while this man is coaching .. Nick my hat is off to you .. you have accomplished something that if a few years ago someone had said would happen .. everyone would have said its impossible .. I don’t know why .. Everyone is procrastinating .. The History Books need to reflect the greatest coach that ever lived .. You should be able to enjoy your fame not your controversy .. smiles .. congrats ..

  15. harleyspoon says: Dec 12, 2013 5:02 PM

    As I said, Battle knows about moving vans backing up to his front door before he even knows he’s fired…It happened to him in 1976 when he was at Tennessee…Saban needs to know how the Bamians can also be when they don’t get that fix every year…They’re spoiled rotten and way too arrogant for their own good…Take note, Coach Saban. UT fans are a little more patient…Mack has only won one NC is 16 years…

  16. jdbaker01 says: Dec 12, 2013 5:10 PM

    Whew, that’s a relief. Now that Saban says he’s not leaving I feel a lot better.

  17. lsuzilla says: Dec 12, 2013 5:11 PM

    And he said he wasn’t leaving LSU…..and he said he wasn’t leaving Miami….

  18. 8to80texansblog says: Dec 12, 2013 5:13 PM

    I have to say… when I first heard this rumor months ago… I NEVER thought Saban would leave for Texas….

    I am rapidly realizing I may be dead wrong….

  19. brianincbus says: Dec 12, 2013 5:18 PM

    Yep, because Nick Saban has never lied. Not when he said he wouldn’t be the coach at Alabama while coach of the Dol… well, I mean he didn’t do it when he was to coach at MSU and went to LS… well, gosh AJ, I guess you were lied to.

  20. crisper57 says: Dec 12, 2013 5:32 PM

    Wouldn’t be the first time he was lied to and dumped…this week.

  21. jjsooner says: Dec 12, 2013 5:36 PM

    First and foremost, why in the eff would Saban leave the gig he has now for Texa$$. Really???? What a bunch of horsecrap. Saban is 63-13 in 7 years with Bama with 3 titles and makes a boatload of money. His southern culture is due to his good fit in this region.

    Texas needs to get over itself which we all know will never happen.

    Oh and by the way, McCarron is the most deserving player in college football for the Heisman. Absolutely no one can even come close to his body of work for the the last 3 years or even this year.

  22. wisconsinhillfolk says: Dec 12, 2013 5:42 PM

    AJ closed the interview by shouting “SKRILLA!!!!” at the top of his lungs.

  23. thefiesty1 says: Dec 12, 2013 5:42 PM

    If Saban is vetting the staff at Texas, he is already familiar with OC Major Applewhite, having previously been on his staff at Bama in the same capacity. This is getting more interesting every day. Let’s all calm down until after the Texas football banquet tomorrow night.

  24. Deb says: Dec 12, 2013 5:48 PM

    harleyspoon says:

    As I said, Battle knows about moving vans backing up to his front door before he even knows he’s fired…It happened to him in 1976 when he was at Tennessee…Saban needs to know how the Bamians can also be when they don’t get that fix every year…They’re spoiled rotten and way too arrogant for their own good…Take note, Coach Saban. UT fans are a little more patient…Mack has only won one NC is 16 years…
    ————————————————
    We went 13 years between Bear’s last championship and the one Gene Stallings earned. And we went 17 years between the Stallings championship and the first with Saban.

    A lot of people hear are posting complete BS about how Nick treats players and how Alabama fans handle life between championships without having a clue what they’re talking about.

    But it’s a football blog. What else is new?

  25. justsumguy says: Dec 12, 2013 5:51 PM

    It’s not rocket science. Once Brown has “stepped down” on “his own accord” Texas will send Saban an offer with dollar signs and lots of zeros. Saban then attaches that to the unsigned Bama offer sitting on his desk right now and forwards it to the AD Bill Battle. Battle does a little copy and paste and everybody is happy. Saban stays and Texas will deny rumors they’re contacting Gruden.

  26. crisper57 says: Dec 12, 2013 5:57 PM

    It’s not rocket science. Once Brown has “stepped down” on “his own accord” Texas will send Saban an offer with dollar signs and lots of zeros. Saban then attaches that to the unsigned Bama offer sitting on his desk right now and forwards it to the AD Bill Battle. Battle does a little copy and paste and everybody is happy. Saban stays and Texas will deny rumors they’re contacting Gruden.

    Or Battle goes fetal at the sheer number of zeroes and then the inevitable happens.

  27. vols84 says: Dec 12, 2013 6:01 PM

    What has Gruden ever done that warrants so much excitement? Win with Dungys players….and what else?

  28. jjsooner says: Dec 12, 2013 6:03 PM

    harleyspoon – Really??????? I’m guessing you’re a UT fan? Arrogance?? The damn word got its birth in Austin!! UT has managed to run off Nebraska, Texas A&M, Missouri and Colorado with its power-happy, money bullying BS. They nearly destroyed the Big 12. Texas needs to stfu about how “patient” and “humble” they are. Deloss Dodds is UT’s version of Dick Cheney.

  29. thermanmerman99 says: Dec 12, 2013 6:05 PM

    saban would be a perfect fit in texas. they all have little man complexes over in texas, driving big monster trucks to try and compensate for their little manhood and 5’3″ height. dwarfboy saban the napoleon complex king would blend right in there. and on a sidenote, bandwagon queen deb should be banned from posting while on menopause. she mentioned how great saban is with players? guess you forgot the incident in miami when he stepped over a convulsing player on the field and could care less about the man’s health. the guy is a pure scumbag but saban worshipping buffoons in alabama are too stupid to try and explain reality to.

  30. thermanmerman99 says: Dec 12, 2013 6:10 PM

    harleyspoon – Really??????? I’m guessing you’re a UT fan? Arrogance?? The damn word got its birth in Austin!! UT has managed to run off Nebraska, Texas A&M, Missouri and Colorado with its power-happy, money bullying BS. They nearly destroyed the Big 12. Texas needs to stfu about how “patient” and “humble” they are. Deloss Dodds is UT’s version of Dick Cheney.

    you just described saban with that paragraph

  31. 1990tiger says: Dec 12, 2013 6:28 PM

    AJ, what he didn’t tell you was how long he was staying…….could be a day, could be a week, etc. BTW, I’m sure your head coach appreciates you telling the world that his wife wears the pants in the Saban household.

  32. normtide says: Dec 12, 2013 6:34 PM

    The story is also the fact that Texas has it’s fans all in for Saban. If he stays at Bama, the UT fan base will be crushed.

  33. jjsooner says: Dec 12, 2013 6:52 PM

    thermanmerman99 – Ummm no. Saban has better sense than to go to the Ego-Maniacal capital of the world. You a LSWho fan??

  34. amosalanzostagg says: Dec 12, 2013 7:03 PM

    I’ll admit I do have a dog in this hunt. That being said, this hire for texas is extremely critical with the dawn of the super conferences. Make the wrong hire, and texas could be eating dust from OU, OSU and Baylor for a long, long time in conference. Make the
    right decision and texas could have a long run of National Championships in football.

    My question to texas supporters, why exchange one 62 year old for another? Granted, Saban has the hardware and the resume. However takes the texas job is going to have to be a master politician (which Mack is.), split time with the LHN (which split Mack’s focus and Saban would come to loathe), and meet rising expectations of the Monied alums at texas. I know texas like the back of my hand and whoever takes the texas job will have a one year “honeymoon”, but then you had better start having major results in the second year. Monied alums will demand it. By year four, you had better be playing in the National Championship Game given the financial resources allocated.

    Point is, texas better have a back plan in the event Saban does stay at Alabama. The money bandied about as if it was candy will come back and bite texas big time. Say you approach David Shaw, You think he is going to accept a mere $5 million coaching contract? Nope, he is going to want the same consideration of a substantial
    increase in the $ 7 million dollar range AND the same increases for his staff.

    Texas ends up paying more for an unproven commodity in a younger coach.

    Should Saban go to texas, I’ll thank him for the National Championships and making
    Alabama the premier football program again.

    RTR

  35. harleyspoon says: Dec 12, 2013 7:10 PM

    Austin is a much better town than Tuscaloosa…Texas is a better state than Alabama…

  36. coolhorn46 says: Dec 12, 2013 7:44 PM

    I wouldn’t pretend to speak for the rest of the UT fans, but I’m very sure UT has contingency plans if Nick Saban decides to stay at ‘Bama. The people calling the shots in Austin didn’t get there by being stupid, and what seems obvious on the outside usually has very little to do with what’s really going on. Remember a few weeks ago when Oliver Luck was a lock to be the new UT athletics director?

    SOME UT fans might be disappointed badly if Saban stays in the confederacy, but most of us know that there are a dozen or more head coaches out there that can win, and win big in Austin. If UT hires a younger coach who is good at x’s and o’s, develops his players’ talent, and can recruit well…and most importantly, has a “fire in his belly” to win, we will be happy.

    The new coach will get a long enough honeymoon to install his program and recruit enough of his players. As for the pressure to win quickly, of course it will be there. I’d hate to be a fan of a school that doesn’t expect to win that much. That’s just one reason why the UT job is one of the two or three best in the country…and plenty of talented coaches out there know that.

  37. erockfox says: Dec 12, 2013 7:56 PM

    Hey Deb,
    Tell me stories of all the MSU, LSU and Dolphins players Saban cares about right now. of course Saban is going to care about his players when he’s still the coach there. Get off your high horse and let people on here have their own opinions. Just because you’re probably some trashy southerner who spends all day listening to Finebaum and posting on here, doesn’t make you a higher authority. You give women sports fans a bad name, if you ever are a woman and not just some wierdo pretending to be a woman on a message board so people will treat them better.

  38. thermanmerman99 says: Dec 12, 2013 8:13 PM

    the only reason dwarfboy saban told aj mccrybaby that he was staying, was because aj wouldve broken down in tears and ran crying all over campus and set off red flags to everybody that dwarfboy really is leaving.

  39. Deb says: Dec 12, 2013 8:30 PM

    @erockfox …

    Yes, you’re entitled to both have and express your opinion. And I’m entitled to both have and express an alternate opinion. Welcome to the adult world, where sharing an opinion may result in disagreement. I know the concept of free and open exchange must be confusing for someone who–in one tiny paragraph–demonstrated himself to be a bigot by labeling Southerners trashy, a chauvinist by assuming women can’t possibly understand the game, and a fool by by blathering nonsense without facts to back it up.

    Since I write and research for a living–you know, working as opposed to spending my days listening to talk radio–I ran a check of sports stories on Saban from 2003 and 2004. Funny, but I couldn’t find a single on-the-record quote from Saban telling LSU that he planned to retired there or saying that he’d never leave Baton Rouge for the pros. I did find stories about how he turned down five other offers from NFL teams before finally accepting the job with the Dolphins.

    The only person on a high horse is the idiot who thinks his comments should go unchallenged. On a football blog? Good luck with that.

  40. Deb says: Dec 12, 2013 8:32 PM

    harleyspoon says:

    Austin is a much better town than Tuscaloosa…Texas is a better state than Alabama…

    ————————————————–
    Wow. I guess you’re just the biggest and bestest in all the land.

  41. irishdodger says: Dec 12, 2013 11:05 PM

    Saban isn’t leaving Bama for Texas or any other university. Jimmy Sexton is just doing his due diligence for his client. I could see the following scenario taking place:

    Saban gets a huuuuuge contract extension, Mack steps down in Austin, Jimbo Fisher (Sexton client) takes the Texas job, Kirby Smart (Sexton client) takes the FSU job. It’s a win-win-win for Sexton. Dey all fiddin ta git payd!

  42. wisconsinhillfolk says: Dec 12, 2013 11:17 PM

    You can’t possibly believe that.

  43. Deb says: Dec 12, 2013 11:47 PM

    @wisconsinhillfolk …

    Don’t know if you meant that to come out so funny, but it cracked me up.

    dodger, those Irish coffees are wicked. How many have you had? ;)

  44. normtide says: Dec 13, 2013 4:17 PM

    Texas fans are all in on the Saban hire. But it probably won’t happen. Then what? Shaw isn’t leaving Stanford. I doubt you get a successful NFL coach. Your looking at Freeze or Franklin. That’s a HUGE let down.

    Texas has painted themselves into a corner. You may have to massively overpay for a mid pack coach.

    If Saban does leave. You don’t pay ten million a year for anything less then championships. First season he may get a pass, second season is a pressure cooker. The one huge advantage Bama has is he gets total control. His assistants can’t give interviews. How does that play with the LHN? Freshmen can’t talk to media. These may be small things, but that’s what his process is all about. The little things, in all areas. You can’t ask a painter for a masterpiece and then box him in. Have you seen him with the media? Your going to build a network around that? Best of luck either way.

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