When it comes to covering the Southeastern Conference, Paul Finebaum is king.
Already the author of a 2014 New York Times best-selling book, “My Conference Can Beat Your Conference: Why the SEC Still Rules College Football,” Finebaum is looking at a release date of September 2023 for a new book.
Finebaum is set to write a book covering Alabama head coach Nick Saban and his offseason feud with Texas A&M’s Jimbo Fisher. Georgia’s Kirby Smart will be a central figure in the publication as well.
Teaming up with John Talty of AL.com, the book will focus mainly on the rivalry that came to a boiling point this offseason between Saban and Fisher. The feud was centered around A&M’s usage of name, image and likeness to attract top recruits and the back-and-forth that followed after Saban called out the Aggies’ head coach.
The ESPN analyst is stepping away from the mic (figuratively, of course) and dusting off the writing utensils to collaborate with AL.com’s John Talty in an account of the rivalry between Alabama’s head football coach and two of his coaching proteges, Texas A&M’s Fisher and Georgia’s Kirby Smart, in the context of college football supremacy and with new rules that allow amateur athletes to be paid by businesses for use of their name, image and likeness.
Finebaum will cover the relationship between Saban and another one of his former coaches in Smart. Smart and the Bulldogs topped the Crimson Tide in January’s national championship after multiple failed efforts in recent years.
Regarding the focus of Smart and Saban, AL.com wrote:
Finebaum said what transpired between Saban and Smart leading up to the championship game was “genuine,” but he thinks “the relationship with Saban is completely different, though.” He contends Saban views Smart completely different than Fisher.
“I think they are both complicated relationships,” Finebaum said. “To me, the scope of all of this is Shakespearian. You have Saban and his two prime courtiers. One is, at least publicly, playing the game of worship and deference in spite of winning a championship against him. The other has simply broken the cord and has gone scorched Earth. To me, it is a fascinating dichotomy between Saban and these two individuals. I think it screams for more. It has Hollywood mini-series written all over it.”