Mr. Nick Saban
Head Football Coach
University of Alabama
Mal Moore Athletic Facility
Tuscaloosa, AL 35401
Dear Coach Saban,
I hope you are doing well in Tuscaloosa. While I know that you are busy preparing for what will be a close game against the Florida Gators (c'mon coach, you know I'm not one of those media dweebs who's predicting a blowout this weekend), I feel the need to write you and share a belief that has been gaining ground in social media circles (you really should try that Twitter thing).
You see, there is belief by many that you are responsible for taking all of the fun out of college football and the College Football Playoff rankings. The reason? Your team is just too good. The College Football Playoff Rankings were formed to create excitement and drama. The fine folks on the committee want media talking heads along with fans to argue the merits of their favorite teams. Truth be told, you've taken away all of the excitement.
If your team (which is ranked #1 in the nation in rushing defense allowing 78.9 yards a game) is fortunate enough to get past a Florida team that has an offense ranked 102nd in the nation (I'm not chuckling, I'm really not), you will be locked into the Final Four. And while I know you absolutely hate "what ifs," I think it's fair to play that game regardless:
What if you wind up playing Oklahoma in a national semi-final? Yes, the same Sooners team that lost to a seven-loss Texas team in 2015, a Texas team that in turn lost to Notre Dame this season 38-3 and lost to TCU 50-7. I'm thinking the Sooner Schooner (pre-game) will chalk up more yards than the Oklahoma running backs. The final will read Alabama 31, Oklahoma 17.
How about Iowa? Iowa? We're talking about Iowa! Look, you beat Wisconsin this season 35-17 while the Hawkeyes slipped past the Badgers 10-6. If Iowa could only score 10 points against the Wisconsin defense, what will that team do against your defense? The final will read Alabama 35, Iowa 10.
And Clemson? I know that Deshaun Watson kid is a player, but it's the Clemson defense I'm looking over. That "D" gave up 242 rushing yards...to Syracuse...Syracuse? Jim Boheim doesn't even know the school sports a football team. The Orangemen haven't run the ball effectively since Jim Brown, Ernie Davis and Larry Csonka suited up.
What will Derrick Henry run for against Clemson, 400? And with all due respect to a fine man named Dabo, I still can't get that 2012 Orange Bowl out of my head. You know, the game in which West Virginia beat Clemson 70-33 and set eight Orange Bowl records? The final in this one: Alabama 38, Clemson 24.
You see, your success as the Bama coach and the product you have put on the field has taken the drama out of not only the playoff rankings but any game in which you take part.
I mean, was there a single Bama fan who was worried about the Iron Bowl last weekend (yawn)? Is there any Bama fan who is losing sleep over this weekend's Florida game? Your occasional rants aside, I have to honest with you and say that your fan base is one of the most confident and comfortable in the nation, and it all starts with your domination of SEC western division opponents.
Take a look at these little factoids, coach:
Take away Cam Newton and Chris Davis and you have gone 8-0 vs Auburn over the last 8 years (I know 2010 and 2013 are still killing you).
- You have won 5 straight against LSU
- You have won 9 straight against Arkansas
- You have won 8 straight against Miss State
- You have won 3 straight against Texas A&M
- You have won 6 of the last 8 against Ole Miss
Some advice from a lowly media type? Continue to do what you do. I can't say what motivates you as I'm no Dr. Phil. Perhaps it's headlines like the one last August in the Montgomery Advertiser that read, "Is Alabama's Reign of Dominance Over?"
Man, I'm still getting a chuckle out of that one. Perhaps it's other media people like Colin Cowherd who love to rub you the wrong way. Perhaps it's a deep-seeded fear of failure that came from your childhood. Whatever the reason, the process is working.
So when I write to tell you that it's your fault that all the drama is being sucked from SEC football and the College Football Playoff, just go with it. Rise every morning with two Little Debbie's and a black coffee and do your thing (by the way, I'll do my best to get back those Little Debbie's that Finebaum took from your kitchen jar and stuffed down his shirt a few year back.)
Give my best to Miss Terry and the family, and don't feel bad that you are personally responsible for taking the fun out of college football. Keep your head up, as perhaps next season will be more exciting.