pixel 1
Wednesday, July 15, 2020

Articles tagged: Paul Finebaum

Jim Harbaugh blasts Paul Finebaum over ‘cheating’ criticism

Jim Harbaugh

Paul Finebaum has been critical of Jim Harbaugh since the coach took over at Michigan, even going so far as to call some of his recruiting tactics “cheating.” On Thursday evening, Harbaugh responded.

The Wolverines head coach dropped the hammer on the ESPN SEC personality with this tweet, in which he (intentionally?) got Finebaum’s name wrong.

What had Harbaugh so heated against Finebaum, a longtime SEC talk show host?

On Wednesday, Finebaum questioned Harbaugh’s recruiting tactics during an appearance on ESPN’s “Outside the Lines.”

While Finebaum believes Harbaugh taking his team out of the country is “genius,” he calls Michigan hiring the father of a recruit for a coaching job”cheating.”

“This is wrong. It may not be illegal by NCAA standards and bylaws by this moment, but to me it’s cheating. It’s blatantly disregarding the spirit of the NCAA rules. We all know why he’s doing it,” Finebaum said on the show. “In my mind he’s cheating.”

Harbaugh has been one step of the NCAA every year since taking over at Michigan. First he organized satellite camps, forcing the NCAA to look into that. Then he took his team to Florida for spring practice, leading to a rule change. Now he’s going abroad and has many more of those trips planned. He is forcing the NCAA to close every loophole they have.

But hiring a recruit’s dad for a job in order to have a good shot at the recruit? It’s nothing new for coaches, but it does seem somewhat fishy.

Is that cheating or unethical? That’s up to everyone to decide. And maybe the NCAA will, too. But Harbaugh does have some good defenses to his hiring considering Mike Johnson does have a strong coaching background as a former 49ers offensive coordinator.

Nick Saban goes off on Paul Finebaum, defends not suspending players (Video)


Nick Saban and ESPN’s Paul Finebaum got into a heated discussion during SEC Media Days on Wednesday that got even more animated when the two were off the air.

It all started when Saban was asked about two of his players, All-Pro offensive lineman Cam Robinson and defensive back Hootie Jones, being arrested back in May on drug and weapons charges. The charges ended up being dropped, and Saban implied that neither player will be suspended for the season opener against USC as long as they continue with their community service efforts.

Finebaum wasn’t satisfied with the conversation ending there, noting that people are going to be critical of Saban if he doesn’t suspend two players who were riding in a car with drugs and weapons. Saban began to lose his cool. Here’s a video:

“I don’t really care to answer the critics, because I’m gonna do what’s right for the players,” Saban told Finebaum. “If the players really did anything that wrong, they would have gotten charged with something. There were four people in the car. Why did the two football players get arrested and the other guys not get arrested? There’s no law about concealed weapons in Louisiana. Why did they search the car just because there was a gun on someone?

“There are reasons why there weren’t charges brought against these guys. Do we condone the behavior? No, but you’re innocent until proven guilty in this country regardless of whether you get convicted in the media or not, which is what you’re doing to these players.”

Saban said that was the “end of the conversation,” but he was still fuming when the cameras stopped rolling. AL.com captured some footage of Saban ripping into Finebaum off the air:

AL.com’s Michael Casagrande shared some details of what Saban said to Finebaum during the commercial break.

Within earshot of media, Saban launched into a four-letter tirade directed at Finebaum. In it, he used his fingers to note the small amount of marijuana found in the car and insinuated the arresting officers were disgruntled LSU fans.

Saban typically has very little patience with the media, and you can see a great example of that in this video. While Finebaum is a known agitator, he has a point in this situation. Even if there wasn’t enough to prosecute Robinson and Jones, that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t face more than a slap on the wrist for riding around with guns and drugs — no matter how small the amount.

Paul Finebaum: Jim McElwain will be next Urban Meyer at Florida

Jim McElwain

No pressure, Jim McElwain. No pressure at all.

As if Florida paying a record amount to buy McElwain out of his current contract with Colorado State weren’t already enough, McElwain now is being hailed as the next Urban Meyer.

The praise came from none other than king of SEC media, Paul Finebaum:

Finebaum also went on ESPN to talk about the move and said, “I think it’s a home run hire.”

Finebaum also credited McElwain for elevating the Alabama program.

McElwain had tremendous success as the Tide’s offensive coordinator, and he was doing phenomenal work with the Colorado State program, but calling someone the next Urban Meyer is as lofty as it gets. Outside of Nick Saban, who is a better college football coach than Urb? Those are the two guys, and Finebaum is putting McElwain in that class.

Like I said, no pressure, Jim.

Steve Spurrier jabs Paul Finebaum over prediction (Video)

Steve SpurrerSteve Spurrier can talk trash with the best of them. He can also coach with the best of them. And after coaching South Carolina to a 38-35 win over Georgia Saturday, Spurrier decided to take a little jab at respected SEC media personality Paul Finebaum.

“I knew we had a good chance to beat ’em when I heard Finebaum picked ’em to win by about 25 points. He picked Alabama to beat Oklahoma by 25 too, so I said we got a chance tonight,” Spurrier said.

“I like Paul Finebaum. I’m just kidding him a little bit. He has a tendency to miss a lot.”

Awesome. Love Spurrier. But was he actually mistaken?

C’mon, Paul. Don’t ruin a good storyline!

Audio: ‘Smokey’ Calls into Paul Finebaum Radio Show Despite Having Heart Attack

We have a section here at LBS called “crazy fans” where we write about people so passionate about their teams that they lose perspective of normalcy. For instance, there was that Arizona Cardinals fan who got a tattoo on his butt for tickets to the NFC Championship Game. Or there was this Packers fan who let his toes freeze off to watch Green Bay play. Most of these incidents center around fans of a team, but I believe we have our first example of someone so passionate about a radio show that he ended up in this category.

On Thursday, a caller named “Smokey” called Paul Finebaum’s radio show despite having a heart attack. I was alerted to this insanity by SI reporter Andy Staples who tweeted out the news via Dennis Dodd, and of course I had to check into the show to hear it myself. Sure enough, Smokey put a nurse on to confirm he was in the hospital. Worst part of all, Finebaum kept the guy on hold for 15 minutes because he had no idea the guy was actually having a heart attack. Listen to this classic audio:


That’s how you know you’ve truly arrived as a radio program. You don’t have a following until your callers dial you up from the ER, you know?