In his first season, after a postgame scuffle with Georgia defensive coordinator Todd Grantham, Vanderbilt coach James Franklin vowed that the Commodores wouldn’t back down from anybody.
Apparently, Franklin isn’t afraid to pick fights with anyone either.
Speaking at Macon Central (Ga.) High School, Vanderbilt’s third-year coach took a jab at Alabama coach Nick Saban, referring to him as "Nicky Satan." And Macon news station WMAZ-13 caught it on tape.
“There is this guy at Alabama. I think his name is Nicky Satan,” Franklin said. “You guys have probably heard of him before. I am going to outwork him. I am going to outwork him and that is kind of our plan every single day.”
The Commodores were thumped by Alabama 34-0 in 2011, Franklin’s first year. Vanderbilt did not play the Crimson Tide last year and the two-time defending national champions aren’t on the 2013 schedule.
Franklin was a special guest at a fall sports banquet earlier this week at the high school. Macon Central senior linebacker and Vanderbilt commit Nigel Bowden endorsed Franklin, describing him as a passionate coach.
“This man right here has so much passion in what he do,” Bowden said. “I believe this is a man I can look up to for four years.”
Franklin was not made available for comment as national signing day looms next Wednesday.
Rivals.com has the 22-member recruiting class ranked 20th in the country. But Franklin and the Commodores recently lost prized recruit Johnathan Ford out of New Hope, Ala. The four-star running back de-committed from Vanderbilt on Monday after he took a weekend visit to Auburn.
The Commodores are in the running for three-star running back Matt Dayes. After narrowing his choices down to North Carolina State and Vanderbilt, the Weston, Fla., native was expected to make his decision on Wednesday morning. But as of late afternoon he still didn’t have an answer, writing on his Twitter account, “Not committed as yet. Just confused right now.”