Steve Spurrier says his recent, well-publicized remarks about Nick Saban weren’t actually a dig at all.
In an interview with SEC Country’s Zach Abolverdi on a Gainesville, Fla., radio show last month, Spurrier commented on the Alabama’s Saban winning a national coach of the year award.
“Obviously they must have voted before the final game,” Spurrier said.
Many in the media interpreted the comment as a shot at Saban after Alabama lost to Clemson in the national championship game. But Spurrier says that wasn’t the case at all.
“No. I wasn’t trying to be critical of Nick,” Spurrier told Gridiron Now’s Buddy Martin. “I was just making the statement that the vote had been taken before the national championship game, which Clemson won. And if they had waited until after it, they would have probably voted for Dabo Swinney.
“Just like the Heisman Trophy. Lamar Jackson probably wouldn’t have won it after the way Deshaun Watson played in the national championship.”
Spurrier is known for making jokes at the expense of rival coaches. So the fact that he went out of his way to clarify his comments shows a lot of respect for Saban. Spurrier went on to say that he has “always gotten along well” with the Alabama coach.
So if Saban is looking for more outside motivation for himself or his team, he’ll probably have to go elsewhere.