Texas A&M beseeched the SEC to consider fining and suspending Alabama coach Nick Saban for publicly stating that the Aggies “bought every player” through NIL deals, On3 reported Monday.
The website says it obtained communications between Texas A&M and the SEC on May 19 through an open records request. Texas A&M sent an email and had multiple phone conversations with SEC commissioner Greg Sankey the morning after Saban’s infamous comments, On3 reported.
“We expect the league to take strong, public action against Coach Saban and the University of Alabama to demonstrate that such unprofessionalism and disrespect for Texas A&M’s student-athletes, coaches, and the university as a whole, will not be tolerated,” read the email sent by A&M athletics director Ross Bjork and co-signed by university president Katherine Banks.
“A public apology from Coach Saban to Coach Fisher, Aggie Football, and Texas A&M University is a good starting point, but the league should also consider monetary and participation penalties against Coach Saban,” the email stated, per On3.
Sankey was working on a reprimand of Saban but added A&M coach Jimbo Fisher to it after the latter’s press conference, when he said “somebody should have slapped” Saban, among other jabs.
Saban’s incendiary comments came May 18 during an event with more than 100 business leaders in Birmingham, Ala. Saban made the initial comments to point out that the wild-west nature of NIL deals for players is not sustainable. And he took aim at Texas A&M’s recruiting class, ranked No. 1 in the country.
“I know the consequence is going to be difficult for the people who are spending tons of money to get players,” 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.
Saban has since apologized multiple times for singling out A&M — as well as Jackson State and Miami — during his speech.