15 Things That I Could Never Do and Say While in The Presence of Nick Saban
WHERE WERE YOU ON JANUARY 3, 2007?
January 3, 2007: The day that the earth turned Crimson. This was the day that all of the University of Alabama (Crimson Tide) fans will remember for when then-Athletic director, the late Mal Moore hired the elusive Nick Saban away from the NFL’s Miami Dolphins for a hefty contract and more-hefty bonus for doing one thing: Winning.
That’s it. Winning. Not tolerating a sub-average performance by the Tide who was fashioned by the legendary Paul “Bear” Bryant. Not just casually playing to be an average team, but the “best” in all of the SEC. Period. If there were any that doubted Mal Moore’s decision to hire Nick Saban, the number around the University of Alabama and the state as well, were very few. Moore, with the faith of a travelling faith-healer, along with Alabama President, Robert Witt, made one flight to Miami (during Bama head coach, Mike Shula’s last Iron Bowl) to meet with Nick Saban and offer him what “was” the wealthiest-contract for a college coach ever.
Nick Saban: His history
Nicholas Lou "Nick" Saban, Jr. (born October 31, 1951) is an American college football coach, and the current head football coach of the University of Alabama, a position he has held since the 2007 season. Saban previously served as head coach of the National Football League's Miami Dolphins and three other universities: Louisiana State University, Michigan State University, and the University of Toledo. His eight-year contract totaling US$32 million made him one of the highest paid football coaches, professional or college, in the United States at the time. He appeared on the September 1, 2008, cover of Forbes magazine as "The Most Powerful Coach in Sports". Saban's career record as a college head coach is 169–58-1.
Saban led the LSU Tigers to the BCS National Championship in 2003 and the Alabama Crimson Tide to BCS and AP national championships in the 2009, 2011 and 2012 seasons, making him the first coach in college football history to win a national championship with two different Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) schools. Saban and Bear Bryant are the only coaches to win an SEC championship at two different schools. In May 2013, he was inducted into the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame.
ALABAMA SURELY NEEDED NICK
Hardly anyone of football fandom, argued or disagreed with Moore, for they had followed Saban’s career, the hard-nose perfectionist who turned Michigan State into a Big 10 power house which was no surprise to fans of this “super-human” who considers a 12-hour workday an “easy” day.
No matter where Saban has coached, success has followed him. From Toledo to Michigan State, then to LSU where he won a National Championship, then Wayne Huizenga, the owner of Blockbuster movie rental, and the Miami Dolphins, sent his private plane to Saban from his Louisiana residence to fly him to South Miami Beach to assume control of the Dolphins.
Despite Saban’s on-air protests and denials about him going to Alabama to coach the Tide, he angered Huizenga and the Dolphin organization when it was said that Saban’s doting wife, Terry, said, “I am tired of living in South Beach, Florida and “we” need to look at Mr. Moore’s contract,” which husband, Nick, did not only look at Moore’s offer, but take it without any remorse. “It (the coaching move) will be in our family’s best interest,” Nick said in a press conference after the jet from the University of Alabama landed at the airport in Tuscaloosa.
In Nick Saban’s career as head coach of The Crimson Tide, he has won two National Championship’s, an SEC Championship, and major bowl appearances. Something in a short look backward, was something Bama fans were not used to: Winning—which did spoil the Bama fans as it would any fans who follow a particular sport.
But that was what Saban was hired for.
Do you Like Nick Saban?
(Don't know Nick Saban)
(Thanks for asking)
15 Things I Could Never Say or Do While in Nick Saban’s Presence
(Things that I cannot say):
- “Your wife, Terry, is certainly a hot-looking gal for her age.”
- “Where does your salary go, Nick?”
- “In your time as head coach, have you gotten any hot majorette action?”
- “You are known for your intense temper, Nick, but do you use angry outbursts at Terry?”
- “Have you ever thought about working for a sanitation department in some city rather than coaching?”
- “I think your grandson favors your rival, Gus Malzone of Auburn.”
- “I think I can call plays for your team as good as you can.”
- “Coach Saban, are you impressed with my confidence?”
(Things that I cannot do):
- Make faces (like a clown in the circus) while Saban is talking.
- Doze-off to sleep while we are eating.
- Start up a conversation with someone across the room while Nick is talking.
- Wave for a sharp-looking woman to come over to our table.
- Stand up and yell, “Hey, folks! This is my first cousin, Nick Saban, head coach of the Crimson Tide.”
- Wear the exact same clothes he does for our lunch appointment.
- Start doing animal impressions and draw attention to our table.
- If Nick’s wife, Terry, dines with us, start making inappropriate remarks to her.”
Note: as you well know, I usually write this type of lists for others so they can succeed in private and social circumstances. But this time I have hopefully helped myself, so I am going to need one of my valued-followers to write me a list of “How I Can Avoid Being Yelled-At by Nick Saban,” because I am terrible at following my own advice. (KA)
A chronology of comments about Nick Saban taking the head coaching job at Alabama:
Saban: "When I was in college it was always about coming to the pros. This is the challenge I wanted. I had a good college job. Why would I have left that if I was going to be interested in other college jobs?
"I took this as a challenge. We certainly haven't seen this through and gotten where we want to go and finished the job here, so why would I be interested in something else?"
Dolphins owner Wayne Huizenga (after giving Saban a vote of confidence): "I am completely sold on Nick Saban. I would admit we made a mistake if we did make a mistake, but I firmly believe in Nick Saban."
Saban: "I'm flattered that they may have been interested in me, but it never really progressed, because we just never let it progress."
Saban: "I guess I have to say it. I'm not going to be the Alabama coach. ... I don't control what people say. I don't control what people put on dot-com or anything else. So I'm just telling you there's no significance, in my opinion, about this, about me, about any interest that I have in anything other than being the coach here."
Saban: "I'm just making a rule to never comment on something like that again because every time you comment on it, it just makes for another story. So I'm not going to comment on it five years from now, and I'm not going to comment on it next week."
Saban: "What I realized in the last two years is that we love college coaching because of the ability that it gives you to affect people, young people. ... If I knew that my heart was someplace else in what I wanted to do, I don't think it would be fair to the [Dolphins] organization if I stayed."