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Alabama Coach Nick Saban Provides His Thoughts on State of NIL in College Football

On the eve of yet another national championship appearance, Alabama coach Nick Saban was asked about how recent name, image and likeness legislation has changed his management of the Crimson Tide this season.

"Well, name, image and likeness is a positive thing for players. They have an opportunity to earn money, which they've always had the opportunity to do. This gives them an opportunity to do it by using their name, image and likeness, which I don't think is a bad thing," Saban told reporters. 

More than a dozen Alabama football players inked NIL deals this past summer, including Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Bryce Young, who inked a deal with CAA for his NIL representation. 

Despite acknowledging how NIL was a positive for players, Saban also expressed some hesitation regarding its impact.

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"I think what is a little concerning is how is that used to get players to decide where they go to school, because I don't think that was the intention," Saban said. "I don't think that would be the NCAA's intention. I think we probably need some kind of national legislation to sort of control that to some degree, because I think there will be an imbalance relative to who can dominate college football if that's not regulated in some form or fashion."

Georgia coach Kirby Smart also provided his thoughts on the topic, saying, "You're going to have the haves and have-nots and the separations that's already there is going to grow larger.

"And the schools that have the capacity and the ability and are more competitive in the NIL market are going to be schools that step ahead on top of other schools."

The national championship is Monday, Jan. 10, with kickoff set for 8 p.m. ET.

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