Bret Bielema came under fire a few weeks ago when he used a deceased football player to lobby for his agenda against the no-huddle offense, and now Nick Saban, also hoping to slow up-tempo teams, has injected cancer into the discussion.. Per ESPN’s Chris Low, Saban likened his support for the proposed 10-second rule, which will be voted on tomorrow, to curbing the risks embedded in chain-smoking:
“The fastball guys (up-tempo coaches) say there’s no data out there, and I guess you have to use some logic. What’s the logic? If you smoke one cigarette, do you have the same chances of getting cancer if you smoke 20? I guess there’s no study that specifically says that. But logically, we would say, ‘Yeah, there probably is.'”
It’s pretty transparent at this point that Saban and Bielema have established their own self-interest and are working backwards from there, but it bears repeating. That being said, while data suggests that faster-pace teams actually suffer fewer injuries, Saban’s logic in this analogy isn’t entirely off-base.
However, as Andy Staples points out, this argument is a pretty slippery slope towards the idea that the best way to avoid football injuries is to avoid football entirely.
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