Alabama coach Nick Saban said a spring college football season likely would dilute the on-field product and resemble a “JV season.”
The coach of six national championship teams said Tuesday on ESPN’s “Get Up!” that his high-level upperclassmen probably would not play next spring to prepare to make the jump to the NFL.
“I think one of the real consequences of this is, if you’re a junior or a senior and you have an NFL grade, are you going to play in the spring?” Saban said. “Or is that going to become sort of a JV season with a lot of these juniors and seniors opting out?
“Everybody’s circumstances and situation is a little bit different. I actually hate it for the players who won’t get the opportunity to play and compete and create value for themselves.”
Alabama is a member of the Southeastern Conference, which has joined the Big 12 and Atlantic Coast Conference as the Power 5 leagues that so far have committed to playing the 2020 season.
Nick Saban pleads for students to be safe
Saban also cautioned that the campus community must take the threat of the spread of COVID-19 seriously. On Sunday, a photo of carefree, maskless college students in the bar district in Tuscaloosa went viral and drew criticism from both the mayor and Alabama’s athletic director.
AD Greg Byrne tweeted: “Who wants college sports this fall?? Obviously not these people!! We’ve got to do better than this for each other and our campus community. Please wear your masks!”
Who wants college sports this fall?? ?????????????????
Obviously not these people!! ???????
We’ve got to do better than this for each other and our campus community. Please wear your masks!?? pic.twitter.com/OAFocYZwin
— Greg Byrne (@Greg_Byrne) August 16, 2020
“The biggest opponent that we have this year is going to be (coronavirus),” Saban said. “Because if we can’t get people to have the personal discipline to manage their personal bubble in a way that they can stay safe, which I think is very possible, then we’re going to have guys testing positive, guys in quarantine, and this is going to create issues on any team.”
–Field Level Media (@FieldLevelMedia)