Jimbo Fisher's Move to Texas A&M Begins College Football's Apocalypse
Welp, I really thought Jimbo Fisher and his agent Jimmy Sexton were using Texas A&M as leverage to get new facilities at Florida State.
I was wrong.
By now--most of you know Fisher--to quote The Steve Miller Band--"Took the money and Ran"....without so much as a Bobby Petrino abandoning the Atlanta Falcons form letter (look it up), meeting with his team or a saying nary a word to anyone in Tallahassee.
Though in hindsight, perhaps this should have been a sign:
And if there were not other indicators College Football will soon be imploding on the weight and financial burden of itself---this seals the deal.
Fisher not only left the perennially contending Seminoles for the 3rd best program in the SEC West---he left for a 10-year, $75 million dollar....guaranteed contract. Yes, guaranteed. Which means no matter what happens. He gets paid. And paid a LOT.....(ed.note: If Fisher hasn't conquered Nick Saban and won at least 10 games by season 2, the Aggie faithful will start questioning this decision. It doesn't matter--Fisher gets paid whether he stays 2 seasons or all 10)
Yeah, sure, Fisher is a good coach. He's won a National Title, something not everyone can say. But he'd lost the spark, the energy needed to keep FSU on top. It appeared at times during the 2017 season, the 'Noles had tuned him out. FSU still needs to beat Louisiana-Monroe on Saturday in a "Make us Bowl Eligible" game in order to finish 6-6 for the season.
He also pissed off his now former players---who were owed at the very least an explanation since he recruited them, by not saying a word to them. Players who unlike Fisher, can't just bail out of one contract to go somewhere else.
This from Deondre Francois, Fisher's now former star QB who was hurt in the season opener and began the Seminoles tumble down this season...
Without droning on and on about Fisher going heel on the team he led for the past 10-years, I''ll try and explain why this is a step in the wrong direction for College Football.
The system is fucked up. Seriously fucked up. Because conferences and schools are flush with ESPN's TV Money--the big programs are trading and cycling through coaches on an almost yearly basis.
Think about it. Texas A&M just paid former Coach Kevin Sumlin--a guy with an excellent reputation and solid, winning pedigree $10 million dollars to leave. Then paid for Fisher's FSU buyout. Finally to cap it, they throw $75 million at Fisher.
This is just one example of the absurdity. Fisher's $7.5 million a year isn't even the top salary in the NCAA, Nick Saban gets more from Alabama. Not much more--but more.
Heck--Arkansas just dropped $11.5 million to get rid of Bret Bielema. Arkansas!
These are insane amounts of money being thrown around for guys who get 5-years or less to be successful. Schools left and right are claiming they don't have the money to give players a living stipend---but then drop tens of millions of dollars on the next shiny new coach.
Eventually this is going to catch up and bite them all in the ass.
The TV money is already beginning to dry up. ESPN is hemorrhaging money because of buying the rights to the ACC, SEC, College Football Playoff and everything else College Football. Yes, the NFL is hurting them too, but the College Football money dwarfs the billions being paid to the NFL.
Boosters are making up some...okay most of this cost for this insane Coaching arms race being pursued by the richest of the rich schools. It's why the Aggies could afford to do what they did and get Fisher. Which is great for them. But it essentially makes the game a total and complete professional business run by obscenely rich people who move coaches around like pawns on a chessboard. There are zero schools outside the Power 5 and for that matter--not many inside the group who can afford to do something like this.
Think about it. Not just A&M, part of the Dumpster Fire (a.k.a) Tennessee coaching search has been pushed and botched due to the interference of the Haslam family (also Cleveland Browns owner).
College Football at its purest is by far more fun to watch and participate in than the NFL will ever be. But it is quickly heading towards professional status. When you have coaches making more than their professional brethren and millions upon millions being poured into facilities that benefit nobody other than the boosters and the athletes they are manipulating---you eventually have a recipe for disaster. It's essentially becoming an "Arms" race only a few can afford to compete in and even fewer who will have success.
It may not come today or tomorrow. It may not come next week, next month or next year....but it is coming and it is going to be bad. The "Power 5" conferences should be playing in their own league, not dragging those with more modest budgets and funding down with them. There is no world where the UCF's and Boise State's of the world can compete with schools paying $10 million-plus just to fire coaches not because they aren't winning but because they aren't winning enough to make the boosters happy.
But you and I both know the greed will somehow, someway eventually reign supreme and eventually like most other giant things built on an ever shifting and soft foundation---it will crumple upon its own weight.
Just remember this folks: Karma's a bitch...and eventually Karma always wins......always....