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Ole Miss head coach Lane Kiffin weighs in on Saban-Fisher NIL Drama, supports “the GOAT”

Ole Miss head coach Lane Kiffin weighs in on Saban-Fisher NIL Drama, supports “the GOAT”

While Nick Saban and Jimbo Fisher are at the center of the latest college football drama, Ole Miss head coach Lane Kiffin is on the sidelines and appears to be weighing in on the side of his former boss, Coach Saban.

Saban made comments during an event in Birmingham Wednesday night regarding the improper use of name, image and likeness (NIL), stating that Texas A&M, specifically, had paid for its entire recruiting class this past year.

“You read about it, you know who they are,” Saban said.

We were second in recruiting last year. A&M was first. A&M bought every player on their team. Made a deal for name, image and likeness. We didn’t buy one player. Aight? But I don’t know if we’re going to be able to sustain that in the future, because more and more people are doing it. It’s tough.”

Nick Saban on A&M’s recruiting

Coach Kiffin, in his own inimitable style, responded last night to Saban’s comments.

Kiffin on A&M and NIL

If you’ll recall, Coach Kiffin already weighed in on NIL — and A&M’s use of the system — back in February, 2022, joking about the amount of money the Aggies “paid” for their recent class.

“Somehow, they’re going to have to control NIL,” said Kiffin back in February. “You’ve got these salary caps. (Schools) giving players millions to sign before they play and other places not able to do that. What would the NFL look like if two or three teams could pay 10 times more in salary cap?”

Saban calls out Jackson State

At Wednesday’s event, Saban didn’t stop at throwing shade Jimbo’s way. He also added Jackson State head coach Deion Sanders into the fray.

In this past recruiting cycle, Sanders snagged the No. 1 player in the 2022 class, Travis Hunter, for his school and attributed it to the benefit of having NIL. 

“We have a rule right now that said you cannot use name, image and likeness to entice a player to come to your school,” Saban said Wednesday night.

Hell, read about it in the paper. I mean, Jackson State paid a guy a million dollars last year that was a really good Division I player to come to school. it was in the paper, and they bragged about it. Nobody did anything about it.

Not surprisingly, Deion Sanders replied to Coach Saban’s comments, saying they were “a lie.”

Coach Kiffin then weighed in again — telling Sanders to “lay off the GOAT.”

Jimbo fights back

Things got even more heated when Jimbo Fisher held a press conference on Thursday morning, specifically to address Coach Saban’s comments.

First of all, I’ll say it’s a shame that we have to do this,” Fisher said. “It’s really despicable. It’s despicable that somebody can say things about 17-year-old kids and their families that they broke state laws. We never bought anybody. No rules were broken. 

 

“It’s despicable that a reparable head coach can come out and say this when things go his way. The narcissist in him doesn’t allow this to happen. The parity in college football he’s been talking about, go talk to coaches who coached for him. Go dig in to wherever he’s been. You can find out anything.”

Jimbo Fisher in response to Nick Saban’s comments

Kiffin “Speechless” at the Fiasco

As for the Rebels’ head coach, he was “speechless” after Fisher’s comments. 

With each side firing shots, current A&M Athletics Director Ross Bjork has now apparently taken it a step further–contacting the SEC office about Saban’s comments.

Stay tuned for more on all the action in the wild, wild SEC west!

Hotty Toddy!

Evelyn Van Pelt
Evelyn Van Pelt

Evelyn has covered sports for over two decades, beginning her journalism career as a sports writer for a newspaper in Austin, Texas. She attended Texas A&M and majored in English. Evelyn’s love for Ole Miss began when her daughter Katie attended the university on a volleyball scholarship. Evelyn created the Rebel Walk in 2013 and has served as publisher and managing editor since its inception.

About The Author

Evelyn Van Pelt

Evelyn has covered sports for over two decades, beginning her journalism career as a sports writer for a newspaper in Austin, Texas. She attended Texas A&M and majored in English. Evelyn's love for Ole Miss began when her daughter Katie attended the university on a volleyball scholarship. Evelyn created the Rebel Walk in 2013 and has served as publisher and managing editor since its inception.

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