NBA reporter whose employer makes him cover NCAAF: Alabama should've hired Coach Prime away from Colorado football

Colorado v UCLA
Colorado v UCLA / Ryan Kang/GettyImages

ESPN radio host Stephen A. Smith -- who is first and foremost an NBA reporter but gets paid so much by the World Wide Leader that he overextends and covers sports like college football as well -- believes that Alabama should've hired Coach Prime away from Colorado football.

“The reason why I feel that way is because I’m thinking of today’s generation of players, catching the pulse of the players,” Smith said (h/t Montgomery Advertiser). “I’m thinking about NIL. I’m thinking about the transfer portal, which are obviously things that Nick Saban had some degree of a problem with.

"And then I'm thinking about Deion Sanders. He's got the top-ranked transfer class right now. This is the second year that he's pulled that off. So if you look at it from that perspective, the ability to recruit talent, I think if you're going to replace the greatness of a Nick Saban, it starts and ends first and foremost with being able to recruit. And you can't tell me if a big-time program like Alabama, somebody like 'Primetime' goes there, that you ain't going to have athletes that will not follow him."

Alabama hires Kalen DeBoer, would've never considered Colorado football head coach Deion Sanders

Alabama went with Washington's Kalen DeBoer as Nick Saban's replacement following his shocking retirement, and in reality, were never going to consider a coach who's coming off a losing season and has one year of experience at the Power Five level.

DeBoer may underwhelm Tide fans who've gotten used to the famed "Bama Standard" Saban established in Tuscaloosa after leading Washington to a Pac-12 title, a Sugar Bowl win over Texas, and a College Football Playoff Championship appearance. The potential reception to Sanders would've been like an atom bomb to college football Twitter.

Perhaps a successful 2024 season could have Sanders considered for these jobs, but he may not even want to consider them back. Coach Prime and his agent have repeatedly preached loyalty to CU, meaning an Alabama jump was likely never in the cards this offseason; especially with Shedeur and Shilo Sanders, and Travis Hunter, no longer having the chance to transfer before spring ball.