KISSINGER INTERVENES IN BAMA SEARCH
With a crucial deadline approaching, former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger was engaged in intense shuttle diplomacy to try to resolve a conflict between the Miami Dolphins and the Alabama Crimson Tide over the services of coach Nick Saban.
"Ve believe ve may be able to complete negotiations before the deadline occurs," Kissinger told reporters as he shuttled between Mal Moore's plane and the Dolphins' complex. "Dis situation, though, is still dangerous, and ve vill vork diligently to zee vat can be done."
Kissinger and a bodyguard who could kill you dead.
The former secretary's plane was followed by posters on Alabama message boards, along with a balsa wood model believed to belong to Paul Bryant Jr.
Both sides remained confident, though, that they will win the battle over Saban in the end.
Alabama AD Mal Moore repeated his statement that the school was "seeking a proven head coach with a proven record of achievement who can reach the level of excellence that all of us desire.
"It might take us getting kicked in the teeth four or five times in a nationally embarassing fashion, but we will get that coach. Whomever he or she might be," Moore added.
Dolphins owner Wayne Huizenga also sounded confident.
"Coach asked if we could defer the decision until 10:00 tomorrow morning and then he went into several reasons as to why he wanted to do that," he said. "I agree 100 percent with his reasons. I understand now more about what he is thinking about and so I am happy to give him until 10:00 tomorrow morning. We agreed to meet here tomorrow morning at 10:00."
But local media outlets also reported an answer from Huizenga that seemed to fly in the face of his confidence.
"Asked if Saban's obvious interest upset or disappointed him, Huizenga answered, 'I don't know yet.'"
"A Miami team source told ESPN's Chris Mortensen that Saban informed the Dolphins' coaching staff earlier Tuesday that he was 'struggling with the decision,' but the staff got the distinct impression that Saban was likely to take the Alabama job."
But Kissinger urged patience.
"Things like dis take time," he said.