Columnist: Spurrier jab on Saban could be precursor of December matchup

GoGamecocks staff reportsJune 25, 2014 

Alabama coach Nick Saban, right, chats with South Carolina coach Steve Spurrier before the start of an NCAA college football game Saturday, Oct. 9, 2010, at Williams Brice Stadium in Columbia, S.C.

MARY ANN CHASTAIN — AP

Steve Spurrier getting in a dig on Alabama's Nick Saban is a sign that South Carolina's coach feels good about his Gamecocks heading into the 2014 season, according to a columnist at AL.com.

Spurrier spoke with GoGamecocks' Josh Kendall in an article published over the weekend about his work-smart approach to coaching.

“I have read stories that people who last a long time have outside interests. I can’t grind on football 11 months a year maybe the way some of these coaches do. They can grind now,” Spurrier said. “I mean, they will go 6:30 a.m. to 7:30, 8:00 at night in the offseason. Did you know that? I don’t know what they do. They say they are working.”

Spurrier specifically mentioned telling Saban he would be just as successful at Alabama if he put in fewer hours.

“He said, ‘If I could do it the way you do it, I would, but I don’t feel comfortable unless I try to cover every base, every angle, be totally prepared.’ I said, ‘Well, that’s probably why you do it.’ When I come out there, I feel comfortable we are ready to play. We have our game plan in, going to call this, call that and so forth. Everybody is different as far as when they feel they are totally prepared.”

AL.com's Kevin Scarbinsky wrote of Spurrier that "the better his teams, the sharper his tongue."

"... him jabbing Saban in June just increases the likelihood that they’ll face off in the SEC Championship Game in December for the first time. It’s a summit meeting that has to happen for so many reasons. It would be the perfect opportunity for Spurrier to put up or shut up about Saban once and for all."

Click here to read Scarbinsky's full article.

Spurrier is 77-39-0 in nine seasons at South Carolina and 219-79-2 in 24 years as a collegiate head coach. The Gamecocks have won a school-record 11 games in each of the past three seasons.

If he worked longer hours “would we be 12-1 instead of 11-2? Oh, you’re kidding,” Spurrier said. “I haven’t heard anybody say that really, but if you wanted to, you can find faults with anybody if they don’t win them all. How many SECs has (Saban) won there in eight years? He’s won two. He’s won three nationals, but he’s only won two SECs in eight years. Now, if you had the No. 1 recruiting class every year and so forth, I don’t know if he has maxed out potentially as well as he could.”

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