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Nick Saban interviewing Patrick Surtain for DB coach is tad shady

Ari Russell



Photo by Icon Sportswire

The recruiting game in major college sports isn’t exactly a process that is riddled in integrity. Let’s not pretend it’s a clean ordeal. One of the most sought after recruits in the country is five star DB Patrick Surtain Jr. of American Heritage in south Florida. His father is former Miami Dolphin and current American Heritage head coach Patrick Surtain. Well Surtain apparently has just be interviewed to join Nick Saban’s staff at Alabama. If this isn’t a tad shady I don’t know what is.

According to the Alabama Rivals site Surtain did indeed interview for the DB coaches gig:

“I met with all the people in the office, I met with Coach Saban and his staff. It was actually a great experience for him to even consider me,” Surtain told “To be a DB coach at Alabama would be a tremendous honor. Eventually it may happen, but I guess it wasn’t the right time.”

“That was the first thing I mentioned to Coach Saban,” the older Surtain said. “I told him I didn’t want it contingent on where Pat [Surtain Jr.] comes there or not. That wouldn’t be fair to him. [Saban] assured me that it wasn’t. He interviewed me because he thought I’d be a great defensive backs coach.”

Now you have to give Surtain credit for this as he wasn’t the one looking for a quid quo pro. Knowing the recruiting game in college football, Saban has to be looking for a quid quo pro. Not saying Surtain isn’t a strong DB coach, it just so happens he interviews the year his son is one of the top recruits in the country. You have to be born last night to believe Saban isn’t looking for something here.

This hire would have everything do with Surtain Jr. American Heritage has become a football powerhouse and getting a south Florida pipeline via Surtain would be a nice little get for Saban.

None of this is illegal of course, but it points to a larger issue with major college recruiting and it’s a heck of a loophole. It is against NCAA regulations to provide jobs for parents of star athletes. However offering jobs on the staff is allowed.

At the end of the day, this is about the adults gaming the system under the fraud that is amateur athletics. Saban is just trying to use all the advantages he can find to keep being a dominant force in the sport. Let me clear this speaks more on system itself and it’s exploitive nature than it does say anything bad about Surtain the senior.

Right now he’s a successful high school football coach with an insanely talented son.  Really, he’s just a pawn, but it just shows the shadiness of the whole ordeal.

Born in the Nation’s Capital, Washington D.C., Ari Russell watched the rise of the 1980’s Miami Hurricanes and knew that he had to be part of the “U” someday. After graduating from Coral Gables, Ari rose through the ranks of the former XM Satellite Radio and then Sirius/XM as college football executive producer. He later spent 2 seasons as the publisher of the website “Beyond U Sports” focusing on major college football/basketball. Ari brings a great perspective on everything Miami, including the Dolphins to F.F.I.

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