Goshen News, Goshen, IN

Sports

January 6, 2013

NOTRE DAME FOOTBALL: The media horde

Stories abound at SunLife Stadium on Saturday

(Continued)

MIAMI — Star treatment

Alabama quarterback AJ McCarron and his All-American center, Barrett Jones, were sitting next to each other on separate podiums. But only McCarron’s spot came with speakers, which made it a little tough for Jones to stay focused.

“Sorry, it’s hard to concentrate when he’s talking about me over there,” Jones said. “The skill players get all the love. AJ got speakers, and I’ve got sit over here and listen to him.”

Gunner

Notre Dame freshman Gunner Kiel, from Columbus, Ind., was one of the most heralded quarterback recruits in the country last year. He had a hard time deciding where he wanted to go to school — to say the least.

First he verbally committed to Indiana. Then he de-committed. Then he verbally committed to LSU. Then at the last moment, he decided to go to Notre Dame.

As far as recruiting news goes, Kiel’s indecision was big news and his choosing Notre Dame was considered a huge score for coach Brian Kelly.

“I think I put more pressure on myself because I overanalyzed a lot of things,” Kiel said. “If I could do it all over again I would probably go back and enjoy the recruiting process and enjoy my senior year and enjoy the people around me and just have a fun with it instead of making it seem like a job. And putting so much stress, so much on myself it buried me.

“I wanted to please everyone. I wanted to make everyone happy. I also couldn’t make up my mind either. That’s why I committed so many places and de-committed to so many places.”

SABAN STARS IN NBA

Nick Saban is not tall.

By his own admission, not fast, either.

Yet somehow, he’s found a way to be a successful pickup basketball player. Then again, it’s easy to win at pickup ball when you can manipulate everything from rules to rosters.

In between recruiting season and spring-football season at Alabama, it’s basketball season for Saban and his staff. Saban was asked at the BCS title game media day on Saturday what he does to stay in shape, and Saban revealed that he enjoys getting on the court.

With certain conditions, of course.

“I’m the commissioner of the league,” Saban said. “It’s a noontime basketball league, NBA. I pick the teams so I have the best players on my team. I also pick the guy that can guard me and there’s only two guys in the whole organization who are shorter and slower that I would pick to guard me. And then I call the fouls. So if you call that working out, I guess that’s my workout.”

Saban, who checks in at around 5-foot-8, said he doesn’t keep stats, and no, he doesn’t break down those game films, either.

“No one would want to see that,” Saban said.

Does Saban call fouls on himself? He said it happens — but only sometimes.

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