Randy Smith: A Message To Peyton And Saban Haters

Thursday, January 17, 2013 - by Randy Smith
Randy Smith
Randy Smith


I have a message to all the Peyton Manning and Nick Saban “haters” on social websites the past few days. Are you kidding me? Are some of you such negative people that no matter what great things these two legends of football do you still have to point out some of their faults? Enough…..please.

Following the Denver Broncos upset loss to the Baltimore Ravens on Saturday of last week, facebook was ablaze with posts like, “King Peyton chokes again….” Or “At least Tim Tebow got a playoff win last year for Denver. Peyton can’t win the big one.” Or this one…..”Peyton’s legacy is still lacking that big signature win. He may go down as one of the big chokers of all time.” Unbelievable.

Here is one simple major fact; Peyton Manning’s legacy in intact. He has won more MVP awards (4) than anyone else in NFL history, and is the odds on favorite to win a fifth this season. He has guided two teams to Super Bowls, winning one (2007). His career stats are among the top three or four in every category, and he is still near the top of his game. That also includes missing the entire 2011 season with serious neck problems and four major surgeries. What I just mentioned also has nothing to do with the other basic fact that he is also one of the truly great gentlemen in sports today.

Did Peyton or “perfect Peyton” as he has been called in the media have a lot to do with the Broncos’ loss to the Ravens? Perhaps, but Denver still had thirty-five points on the board in the fourth quarter. His fourth quarter interception was a real killer, because of when and where it happened.  But teams win and lose as a team not individuals. Terrible pass coverage by the Broncos’  secondary had more to do with the loss than anything Peyton Manning did or didn’t do. Understandably though, quarterbacks still get more praise and criticism than players at other positions. The only thing I ask is, no matter how you feel about Peyton, consider the big picture.

I also ask the Nick Saban “haters’ out there to do the same thing; consider the big picture. Last week, also on facebook, there were discussions about the unusually high divorce rate among Sabans’ assistant coaches.  Why is that even being discussed? It has nothing at all to do with his coaching ability. Sure, he is a strict hard line disciplinarian. He demands a lot from his players and his staff, but I still can’t really see the relevance here. If there is too much heat in the kitchen, get out. I haven’t done any research on that particular topic, because I choose to look at the big picture. Again I can’t see the relevance.

Everything I have ever read or seen about Coach Saban has been pretty much on the money. He is not perfect. He is tough, tougher than most of his coaching counterparts. But he is also a winner, and to rebuild the Alabama program the way he has in such a short period of time, has forced him to do things his way. As tough as he has a reputation for being, I can’t believe he is any tougher or even as tough as Coach Paul “Bear” Bryant.

I do know one other thing; Coach Bryant would have loved Coach Saban and Peyton Manning. He would have loved them because he always looked at the big picture.


rsmithsports@comcast.net

---

Randy Smith has been covering sports in Tennessee for the last 43 years. After leaving WRCB-TV in 2009, he has continued his broadcasting career as a free-lance play-by-play announcer. He is also an author and is a media concepts teacher at Brainerd High School in Chattanooga. He is also the Head Softball Coach at Brainerd. Randy Smith's career has included a 17-year stint as scoreboard host and pre-game talk show host on the widely regarded "Vol Network". He has also done play by play of more than 500 college football, basketball, baseball and softball games on ESPN, ESPN2, Fox Sports, CSS and Tennessee Pay Per View telecasts. He was selected as "Tennessee's Best Sports Talk Show Host" in 1998 by the Associated Press. He has won other major awards including, "Best Sports Story" in Tennessee and his "Friday Night Football" shows on WRCB-TV twice won "Best Sports Talk Show In Tennessee" awards. He has also been the host of "Inside Lee University Basketball" on CSS for the past 11 years. He was the first television broadcaster to ever be elected to the "Greater Chattanooga Area Sports Hall of Fame", in 2003. Randy and his wife, Shelia, reside in Hixson. They have two married children (Christi and Chris Perry; Davey and Alison Smith). They also have three grandchildren (Coleman, Boone, and DellaMae).


PHOTOS: Dalton Swimmers Slip Past Stuart Heights

UTC Athletics Finish 61st In Capital One Cup Standings

The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga’s 2014-15 athletic season continues to stack up well against the rest of the nation, according to the recent release of the final Capital One Cup standings.  The Mocs men’s programs placed a collective 61st in all of NCAA Division I, outpacing 26 schools from the so-called ‘Power Five’ conferences.  The Capital One Cup is ... (click for more)

Bradley County Commission Rejects 10-Cent Tax Rise For Lake Forest MS; Firefighters Get $3,000 Raise

With a small crowd of demonstrators sitting in the back of the room with signs that read, “Vote no on property tax increase,” the Bradley County Commission on Monday night finally rejected a proposed 10-cent property tax increase that would have added funds to the construction of a new academic building at Lake Forest Middle School.   Funding for renovations at ... (click for more)

11 Attorneys Apply In 2nd Round For Replacing Judge Stern

Eleven attorneys have applied in the second round of applications to replace Rebecca Stern as judge of Criminal Court's Division II. The applicants are: Christian J. Coder Chattanooga Tracy Cox Signal Mountain Amanda B. Dunn Chattanooga Ardena Juanita Garth Chattanooga Thomas Clifton Greenholtz Ooltewah Andrea DeFay Hayduk ... (click for more)

Could The Marriage Decision Spark A New Independence Day?

I confess that this year I am having a hard time with the idea of celebrating the 4th of July Independence Day. It is not because I am not thankful to God for what was done on that day, what it represents, and the blessings I’ve experienced that flow from it. On the other hand, I want to think that maybe this year’s celebration will mark a period in our history in which a new movement ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Hay Fields Of July

Oh my goodness, July has just arrived and during my formative years, it was the most hated month of the year. When I was 12 years old, my wonderful grandfather decreed the days of begging for money to go to the picture show and burgers at the Krystal were over, that I was on the payroll for a dollar an hour and, in our family, folks worked for what they spent. Now my grandfather, ... (click for more)