Home / College Football / COMMENTARY: Like It Or Not, Alabama Football Program Deserves Great Credit

COMMENTARY: Like It Or Not, Alabama Football Program Deserves Great Credit

As I was watching Alabama’s total dismantling of Notre Dame in the BCS title game last night, I just shook my head and wondered why so many people seem to be hating on that program.

Ok, Nick Saban isn’t exactly Mr. Personality and Alabama fans do seem to have a bit of an I’m better than you attitude, but don’t you have to admire what Saban has done with this program?

Three national titles in four years in this day and age of parity in sports is truly amazing and that’s what Alabama has accomplished.   If you count the title he won at LSU, Saban has now won four national titles; only Bear Bryant has more.   That’s pretty good company.

I had to laugh at the end of the game when the Alabama players were going to give Saban the traditional Gatorade shower; when they did it, they did not pour it directly over his head…they didn’t dare mess up his hair.   And when they did it, did you see Saban’s face?   He didn’t smile and in fact seemed to be annoyed by it, but I’m sure he would take a few more of those if his teams keep winning national titles.

But that snapshot of Saban in that moment is what makes Saban the winner he is; he is driven, he is demanding of himself, his coaches and his players, he is single minded in his purpose and most importantly of all, his teams have bought in to his philosophy.   I’m sure they don’t always like it but you can’t argue with its success.   Even after the win, Saban invoked his “two day” rule; you enjoy the win for a couple of days and go right to work for next year.

Yet it was interesting to hear quarterback A.J. McCarron say they called a team meeting to “refocus” because of the distractions presented to the team with being in Miami with all its night life and things to do that could get a player or a team in trouble.   Even with all of Saban’s discipline, these are after all, young people playing the game, and it took the team leaders to get back their focus, but that too, is a sign of discipline, that comes from Saban.

I have always admired athletic excellence, whether from a team or an individual and what Alabama has accomplished deserves, even if grudgingly, at least respect if not admiration.   It is HARD to win nowadays in college athletics and to win three championships in four years is bordering on a word Saban does not like to use…dynasty.

But wait, we can only talk about that for one more day.

Saban wouldn’t want me talking about last year; he will already be focusing on next year.

About Steve Russell

Check Also

Jan 23, 2016; Tuscaloosa, AL, USA; Southeastern conference commissioner Greg Sankey holds the College Football Playoff trophy with Alabama running back Derrick Henry (2) and head coach Nick Saban during a presentation to celebrate the victory in the CFP National Championship game at Bryant-Denny Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Butch Dill-USA TODAY Sports

College Football Playoff Shakes Up Schedule

The College Football Playoff was a success in its first year. Yet, that doesn’t stop …

Apr 4, 2016; Houston, TX, USA; NBA former player Michael Jordan looks on during the first half between the Villanova Wildcats and the North Carolina Tar Heels in the championship game of the 2016 NCAA Men's Final Four at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

Michael Jordan Speaks out about Shootings, Police Officers

NBA great Michael Jordan opened up about his thoughts about shootings of African-Americans and the …


Treon Harris to Transfer

With the college football season approaching, the Florida Gators have announced that former starting QB …

July 24, 2016; Los Angeles, CA, USA; USA guard Kevin Durant shoots against China in the first half during an exhibition basketball game at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

USA Basketball Wins Second Exhibition Game

Just a few short days after their big win over Argentina, team USA won its …


Charlotte Is No Longer The Home Of The 2017 NBA All-Star Game

The House Bill 2 came between Charlotte, North Carolina and the 2017 All-Star Game. The …

USA; Tampa Bay Rays right fielder Steven Souza Jr. (20) and catcher Luke Maile (46) and third baseman Evan Longoria (3) and second baseman Logan Forsythe (11) and second baseman Tim Beckham (1) Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Tampa Bay Rays Continue Series Against Oakland

The Tampa Bay Rays are continuing their three-game winning streak. The Rays defeated the Oakland …

Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

MLB Preview Tonight

It’s summer time—the best time to go to a baseball game and experience the atmosphere. …

Jul 16, 2016; Atlanta, GA, USA; Atlanta Braves starting pitcher Mike Foltynewicz (26) throws a pitch against the Colorado Rockies in the fourth inning at Turner Field. Mandatory Credit: Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Braves Begin Series With Rockies

The Atlanta Braves (33-62) open up a four-game road series with the Rockies (43-51) tonight …

Jul 19, 2016; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Miami Marlins relief pitcher A.J. Ramos (44) and catcher J.T. Realmuto (11) celebrate a win against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. The Marlins defeated the Phillies 2-1 in 10 innings. Mandatory Credit: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

Marlins To Close Out Series With The Phillies

The Miami Marlins are in the middle of a crucial ten game span against NL East …

Jul 20, 2016; Denver, CO, USA; Tampa Bay Rays second baseman Tim Beckham (1) doubles in the ninth inning against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field. The Rays defeated the Rockies 11-3. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Rays Crush Rockies 11-3, Face A’s Next

In the midst of a terrible season that has seen the Tampa Bay Rays (37-57) …

Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

American League Second Half Outlook

The second half of the baseball season is in full swing which translates to? Pennant races. Teams …

Jul 19, 2016; Boston, MA, USA; San Francisco Giants relief pitcher George Kontos (70) hangs onto the ball after tagging out Boston Red Sox right fielder Mookie Betts (50) during the eighth inning at Fenway Park. Mandatory Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports

National League Evening Preview

Tonight is a busy night for the National League in the MLB. Starting with the …

Dec 31, 2015; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; Oklahoma Sooners quarterback Baker Mayfield (6) throws against Clemson Tigers linebacker Ben Boulware (10) during the second quarter of the 2015 CFP semifinal at the Orange Bowl at Sun Life Stadium.  Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Big 12 Looks To Expand

Following a Tuesday meeting between Big 12 presidents, Oklahoma president David Boren announced that the …

Dec 29, 2015; Houston, TX, USA; LSU Tigers running back Leonard Fournette (7) holds the MVP Texas Bowl trophy after defeating the Texas Tech Red Raiders 56-27 at NRG Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Thomas B. Shea-USA TODAY Sports

LSU Looks To Capitalize On Its Opportunity

The Louisiana State University Tigers will enter the 2016 college football season with high expectations, …

Jul 14, 2016; Hoover, AL, USA; South Carolina head coach Will Muschamp speaks to media during SEC media day at Hyatt Regency Birmingham-The Wynfrey Hotel. Mandatory Credit: Butch Dill-USA TODAY Sports

Muschamp Helps Close Out SEC Media Days 2016

It wasn’t Will Muschamps first SEC Media Days experience, but 2016 marked the first time …

Jul 14, 2016; Ayrshire,  SCT;Phil Mickelson (USA) hits his second shot from the 18th fairway  during the first round round of the 145th Open Championship golf tournament at Royal Troon Golf Club - Old Course. Mandatory Credit: Thomas J. Russo-USA TODAY Sports

Phil Mickelson Leads British Open After First Day

The 145th annual 2016 British Open is underway at Royal Troon Golf Club in Scotland. The …


Missouri’s Football Crisis: Rebuilding A Program

On the final day of SEC Media Days, Barry Odom took the stand as Missouri’s head …

Jul 10, 2016; Boston, MA, USA; Tampa Bay Rays shortstop Brad Miller (13) bats during the sixth inning against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park. Mandatory Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

Second Half Of MLB Season Begins

The All-Star Break is a good time for teams to rest up and reform themselves …

Jul 12, 2016; Ayrshire, SCT; Jason Day plays from the 3rd tee during a practice round for the 145th Open Championship golf tournament at Royal Troon Golf Club - Old Course. Mandatory Credit: Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports

British Open Underway

The 145th Open Championship is already underway at the Royal Troon Golf Club in Scotland. Welcome …

Oct 18, 2016; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Chicago Cubs starting pitcher Jake Arrieta (49) pitches during the second inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers in game three of the 2016 NLCS playoff baseball series at Dodger Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kelvin Kuo-USA TODAY Sports

Cubs Rely On Jake Arrieta To Even Up World Series

The Indians notched a Game 1 World Series win against Chicago and the Cavaliers received …