Jimbo Fisher woke up this morning ready for war against Nick Saban, who last night accused the Texas A&M head football coach of “buying every player on their team” in recruiting this past year.
Fisher’s press conference (skip to 9:45 mark of video) began at 10 a.m. CT and the Aggies’ coach produced 10 minutes of absolute flames, strongly defending his own program while calling out Saban for his claims.
“It’s a shame that we have to do this. It’s really despicable. You’re taking shots at 17-year-old kids and their families,” Fisher said. “You can call me anything you wanna call me, [but] you ain’t calling me a cheat. I don’t cheat and I don’t lie. I learned that when I was a kid, if you did, your old man slapped your side of the head. Maybe somebody should have slapped him.
“We never bought anybody. No rules were broken. Nothing was done wrong. The way we do things, the ethics in which we do things … I promise you this: There are no violations, there is nothing [we did] wrong … There’s no by-laws of anything we’ve ever broken. We never promised or done anything that goes against the laws of the State of Texas. And it’s insulting to say a 17-year-old and his family broke laws … I’m not defending anybody, I’m just giving the truth. I have nothing to hide and this program has nothing to hide. It would be interesting if everybody could say that.”
“Some People Think They’re God”
Fisher went in even further on the seven-time national champion coach, calling him a “narcissist” while actually reversing the accusations:
“It’s really despicable that a reputable head coach can come out and say this when he doesn’t get his way and things don’t go his way,” Fisher said. “The narcissist in him doesn’t allow things to happen when he’s not on top. The parity in college football he’s been talking about? Go talk to coaches who coached for him, you’ll find out all the parity. Like we said, never has been parity. Certain people never followed the rules anyway. Go dig into wherever he’s been. You can find out anything.
“Some people think they’re God. Go dig into how God did his deal, you may find out about the guy a lot of things you don’t wanna know. You build him up to be the czar of football, go dig into his past. You can find out anything about what he does and how he does it … I know the guy, know him really well. It’s amazing that we’re allowed to do those things, it’s really despicable. When you walk on water, I guess, it don’t matter.”
“I Don’t Want to Be Associated with Him”
Fisher said Saban has tried to call him multiple times over the past 12 hours but he has not taken the calls, saying “we’re done” when asked about any kind of professional relationship continuing. Fisher said in the past he has had opportunities to work with Saban but never has, saying: “There’s a reason I never went back and worked with him. I don’t want to be associated with him.”
Alabama and Texas A&M – both teams being in the SEC West division – face off every year on the gridiron. This season’s edition of the rivalry will be played in Tuscaloosa on Saturday, October 8. It is 142 days away and Fisher is already looking forward to the clash against Saban.
“It’ll be fun, won’t it? I don’t mind confrontation, been with it my whole life, kind of like it myself. Backing away from it wasn’t the way I was raised,” Fisher said.
It This Beef Just Getting Started?
We do not know if this conversation will continue with Fisher and Saban in the coming days with any more back-and-forth. Either way, all eyes will be on SEC Football media days from July 18-21 in Atlanta, where the two coaches will likely meet in person for the first time since the feud began.
Next up to reply to Saban’s claims will be Jackson State head football coach Deion Sanders, who made an announcement late last night that promised his Twitter followers that he would “address the lies.”
Things might just be heating up.