Texas tried to lure Saban to Austin in January



A few days after Alabama won the 2013 national championship, a University of Texas regent and a former regent talked with Nick Saban’s agent about the possibility of the Crimson Tide coach replacing Longhorns coach Mack Brown, The Associated Press has learned.

Regent Wallace Hall of Dallas told the AP he spoke by telephone with agent Jimmy Sexton a few days after the Jan. 7 game. Tom Hicks, a former regent who is the brother of current Regent Steve Hicks, also was on the call.

Tom Hicks, the former owner of the Texas Rangers, the Dallas Stars and the English professional soccer team Liverpool, was a regent in 1997 when Brown came to Texas and was instrumental in hiring him away from North Carolina.

Two days after the call with Sexton, Tom Hicks met with Brown over lunch and told him about the call, according to several people who spoke with the AP. He asked Brown if he was ready to retire.

Brown, who had just finished his 15th season at Texas, said he wanted to keep coaching and the matter was dropped.

Brown is under fire from fans upset about a 1-2 start this year after consecutive lopsided losses to BYU and Mississippi.


AGENTS: Southeastern Conference Commissioner Mike Slive is critical of the NCAA’s rules governing agents, saying they “are part of the problem” and not the solution.

The commissioner told The Associated Press Thursday his hopes for total revamping of “the rules and regulations as they relate to agents” never materialized. It’s an issue that continues to plague the powerhouse SEC, which had 63 players chosen in this year’s NFL Draft.

A recent Yahoo report said that agents’ runners provided improper benefits to football players at Alabama, Tennessee and Mississippi State. Slive says leagues like the SEC should be allowed to create their own rules to curb such problems.


GEORGIA: Georgia’s athletic association has implemented a new ticketing system at Sanford Stadium.

Each reserved seat ticket can be scanned at all entry gates due to the addition of a bar code on each one. One advantage of the new system is that season and single-game ticket holders will have the opportunity to transfer tickets electronically to fellow fans online without being charged.

This is intended to make the experience better for fans by eliminating the hassles of will-call lines and the inconveniences of picking up or dropping off tickets to others.