It’s a safe assumption that every time Steve Spurrier opens his mouth, college football’s Ultimate Troll Master is looking to gig someone. And that someone is usually Georgia.
Speaking to Paul Finebaum on Wednesday, the presently-retired head coach explained why he thought LSU and Georgia are the best jobs in the SEC.
“I think Georgia and LSU are basically the best two,” Spurrier said, via SEC Country. “Of course Nick Saban has made Alabama the best right now. As far as the recruiting advantages, LSU doesn’t have much competition in their state and Georgia pretty much should own their state there.”
Not that he’s wrong there. Spurrier has at least one peer who agrees with him on LSU being the SEC’s best job in Jimbo Fisher, who considered leaving his post at Florida State to return to Baton Rouge only to change his mind. And naming Georgia as the SEC East’s top job isn’t a controversial statement either.
But it’s also a hint-hint, nudge-nudge at his dominance of the hated Bulldogs as a head coach. Spurrier went an astounding 11-1 against Georgia during his dozen years at Florida (the Gators were 2-10 against UGA in the 12 years prior to Spurrier’s arrival) and 5-6 against the Dawgs at South Carolina (the ‘Cocks had beaten Georgia 13 times in 57 tries before the HBC got to Columbia).
If Georgia is the best job in the SEC East, it makes his six SEC championships and eight SEC East titles won while working at jobs worse than that one look all the more impressive. For the record, Georgia has won two SEC titles and five SEC East crowns over that same span.
An overly cynical view of Spurrier’s honest and entirely reasonable assessment? Perhaps. But I doubt it.
Spurrier also re-hashed the time he turned down the Alabama job while taking credit for the Nick Saban hire.
“I really get a thrill, Paul, out of trying to do things that have never been done before,” Spurrier said. “So I told Mal Moore, I said, ‘Listen you don’t want me there, I’m not going to come there. But hang with Coach Saban.’ He’d already turned it down and said ‘I’m staying at Miami (Dolphins)…’ I said, ‘Go back to him. I think he’d rather be at Alabama than at Miami.’
“I told him to go back and get Nick Saban and he went back and got him.”
For the record, Alabama has the SEC’s highest all-time winning percentage, nearly double the SEC titles of their next closest competitor and nearly three times the claimed national championships as the next closest foe.