Saban Shmaban

By - January 04, 2007

So I’m sitting here asking myself over and over again what I think about Nick Saban leaving the Dolphins, going back on his word, and taking the vacant head coaching position at Alabama. Saban is guaranteed to make $32 million over eight years even if he doesn’t last that long in Tuscaloosa. So what do I think about that? The truth is I don’t know what to think about it. I’m an opinionated person but these numbers are starting to throw me for a loop.

Last night-while sculpting myself into an Adonis at the gym-the evening news was on and one of the lead stories was about Home Depot’s CEO. Robert Nardelli resigned suddenly Wednesday after a near shareholder revolt triggered by falling market share and stock prices, I don’t know much about the business world but as near as I can tell from the story his six years in charge were more or less a disaster. If you’re worried that the belt sander you’ve been meaning to buy or that patio furniture you had your eye on might not be available with things going down the tubes at the mega-store don’t be, things are fine at home depot, as evidenced by the fact that Nardelli will be handed a severance package that could be worth over $210 million when all is said and done. What do I think about that? No idea, I can’t get past the $210 million part.

When the numbers are this astronomical getting my opinion on it becomes complicated, it’s sort of like asking a caveman what he thinks about electricity, the truth is he doesn’t think anything about it because he can’t even comprehend it and that’s sort of how I feel about Nick Saban making $32 million or Mr. Nardelli essentially being fired and then handed sacks of cash on his way out the door.

I find myself asking the question, do I live in the same world with these people? Of course, as far as I can tell, coach Saban and I and “The Nard” are all here together on planet earth but in a more real sense we’re living in different universes and it’s hard for me to comprehend how that kind of money must change your life and your priorities. On some level it seems to me that the more money you make the easier it must be to do the right thing. I often hear people refer to someone who is very wealthy as having “Go to hell” money (okay so the actual term isn’t “go to hell” but this is a family blog). The idea is that if you have a lot of money and someone asks you to do something you don’t want to do then you can just tell them to go to hell. I feel as though somebody giving me $32 million or the $22.5 million the Dolphins gave Saban two years ago, or the $6 million he got from LSU to leave Michigan State would make me one of the most morally unimpeachable people on the planet but apparently it doesn’t work that way but I guess I knew that. Apparently having all the money in the world just makes you less reliable, less honest, less considerate of others, less of everything that a coach and a teacher is supposed to be.

Posted by at 12:43 PM on January 04, 2007
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