Saban wants nine SEC games
Alabama has a Nov. 17 home game against Western Carolina, and the school still hasn’t sold all the tickets. But if Nick Saban had his way, the Crimson Tide wouldn’t play FCS teams such as the Catamounts. Or lower-level FBS teams such as Western Kentucky or Florida Atlantic.
During his weekly radio show Thursday night, the Alabama coach said he would like Southeastern Conference teams to play nine league games instead of the current eight. And for non-conference games, there would be 60 or 70 major teams, and they would be required to play each other.
“The most important goal is to keep people coming to games,” Saban said, adding that he understands when some people aren’t excited about some of the non-conference matchups.
He said that would result in more one- and two-loss teams, which means teams wouldn’t have to go unbeaten to have any shot at all at a title. He pointed to the popularity of the NFL, which had the seven-loss New York Giants as a champion.
“Not many coaches agree with me because they want to be able to win certain games,” Saban said. “Some teams that want to be bowl-eligible don’t agree with me, either.”
He voiced his dislike of conference realignment, too, “but nobody listens to what I say.”
Salad days for Tide: During Saban’s show, ESPN.com’s Mark Schlabach told the coach he thought it was good for college football for Notre Dame to be good.
“It’s good for college football when Notre Dame is good? To me, it’s good for college football when Alabama is good,” Saban answered.
Home lift: Saban said his team has played better on the road this year rather than at home.
Senior offensive lineman Barrett Jones said sometimes it’s more challenging to play on the road.
“I’ve said this before, the cheers don’t really do much for me any more, but I love the boos,” he said, adding with a smile that he wants to be clear he didn’t say “booze.”