Finebaum: Texas Longhorns offered Nick Saban $100 million

Stacy Revere

Just when you thought the Saban-to-Texas stuff had faded into the past...

According to an advanced copy of noted SEC homer Paul Finebaum's new book, "My Conference Can Beat Your Conference: Why the SEC Still Rules College Football," Texas Longhorns boosters were willing to pay Alabama Crimson Tide head coach Nick Saban $100 million to coach the Horns.

Finebaum writes:

Texas was dead serious about trying to money-whip Saban. Depending on whom you talk to -- Bama big hitters or Texas big hitters -- the Longhorns were prepared to give Saban somewhere between a $12 and $15 million signing bonus and a salary package worth $100 million (plus performances).

The numbers from Finebaum are similar to those that emerged from some Texas media outlets last fall.

The boosters were part of a movement that wanted to oust former head coach Mack Brown during his final days in Austin and were likely working without the knowledge or permission of athletic director Steve Patterson, who took over in early December, and his predecessor, DeLoss Dodds.

The Associated Press had previously reported that contact between Saban's agent and members of the Texas Board of Regents had been made without the knowledge or permission of president Bill Powers back in early 2013.

Then, last fall, there were prevalent rumors around Austin that Saban's wife had been house hunting in the city, leading to speculation that Saban was seriously considering the move.

But Brown avoided a crucial meeting with Powers and Patterson by going on the recruiting trail after the season ended and then to New York, delaying a decision about his future. With his job status still in question, news emerged during the incredibly awkward Texas football banquet that Saban had finally accepted a new contract with Alabama. The timing of the announcement hardly seemed a coincidence.

Saban's contract extension with Alabama will pay him significantly less than Texas reportedly was ready to offer -- $6.9 million per year with performance incentives.

In all likelihood, Saban was probably being candid when he said that he was too old to start over somewhere new, but it's hard not to wonder what might would happened had Brown resigned following the season and given Texas the opportunity to speak with Saban's representatives when the coaching position was actually vacant.

Finding money for him was definitely not an issue, it seems.

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