Nick Saban Still Tossing Out Excuses for Losing to Utah

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That was the final of the 2009 Sugar Bowl and if Nick Saban, Alabama players, or fans wish to relive this game well you can if you go to Hulu.com and watch the beat down Utah put on Alabama.  Reason for Sugar Bowl news is that a reporter asked Nick Saban about the Sugar Bowl and had this to say:

“There’s very little interest from our fans, our players or anybody else to play in the Sugar Bowl, which to me is a tremendous opportunity,” Saban said. “I tried to tell everyone, you’re only going to remember one thing about this game and that’s the outcome. So there’s no interest, there’s no passion and everybody is embarrassed because of how we played. Well, it’s because you didn’t have any passion for it, you didn’t have any interest in it, you didn’t have any enthusiasm to do it, and that’s across the board. And that’s not right. We go to a BCS bowl game, everybody ought to be positive and enthusiastic about what we’re doing.”

Kind of hard to believe that a team that had not been to a major bowl since their 1992 National Championship team who played in the Sugar Bowl against Miami, FL.  Alabama’s excuse for not being into the game holds no value, because in 2007 this team was only 7-6 and went to the Independence Bowl and during the year they were 6-2 before losing four of their last five.   Adding insult to injury was the home loss to Louisana-Monroe.

The prior Sugar Bowl when Georgia smoke Hawai’i 41-10, and they probably not psyched about playing Hawai’i, but they showed up.  The fact that Saban does not or will not give Utah credit for a win, but instead tries to hold onto some type of sense of superiority by saying the team, the fans, and the staff were not into the game.

If you just look at the coin toss for the game when one of the Alabama players says ‘I’m gonna kill ya’ or something along those lines while trying to intimated the Utes.  That did not work, but it points out that the Crimson Tide were ready to play because once the game starts no one wants to lose, or in this case get embarrassed.

This reflects poorly on Nick Saban who is supposed to be some master coach who makes four million dollars a year, and can not motivate his team in their biggest bowl game in 16 seasons.  Wonder what the athletic director said after hearing the comments that the team was not ready to play in this game.

The fact of the matter that Nick Saban is never going to give Utah credit that they were the better team that day.  Also, for some humor Saban somewhat blames the fans for not being ‘into’ the game.  That is also false, because knowing people who were down there the Alabama fans were pumped and talking trash about how they would beat Utah.

I doubt that many people would travel to a game that they were disappointed in attending, and here is a quote about Saban bashing the fans:

When we didn’t have the same enthusiasm, the same energy, as a team, as an organization, as a group of fans — which was the Sugar Bowl — same people, same team, but played at a completely different level,” Saban concluded. “That’s a great lesson for all of us, in terms of, we know what we want to accomplish, everybody has a positive attitude and positive energy and knows what their role is.

So, it was the fans that who did not have the energy to cheer on a team that was down 21-0 before any one finished their first beverage or plate of nachos.  Saban can not let this go about not the entire organization being pumped for the game, but that game came down to coaching and the players which were outperformed by Utah.

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6 Responses

  1. I’m a TCU man with secondary loyalties to Bama (I won’t bother explaining). I was at the Sugar Bowl rooting for the Tide but wasn’t at all sad to see Utah fly the flag for the MWC so well.

    I don’t have an unrealistic view of Nick Saban – I know the guy is not always the most appealing character – but I’ll defend him here and say that the above comment should not be read as an excuse.

    Alabama’s whole season depended on the left side of that offensive line. Every Bama knew all year that if Andre Smith and Mike Johnson went down there was nothing behind them and Bama couldn’t move the ball on JP’s arm alone. Within 5 minutes of kickoff, for the first time all year, both of those guys were out of the picture. Without that line Utah was simply a better team. No doubt the Utes were the winners and Bama has no excuses.

    One of the things that cannot be excused is Bama’s visibly deficient attitude. And that’s what Nick is doing in his comments here. That team played with fire and heart all year – I know because I watched every game they played. In New Orleans they didn’t. Yes it’s stupid. Yes they hadn’t been to the Sugar Bowl since 1993 etc etc. They SHOULD have been excited. But they weren’t.

    They are kids, not Bama fans or historians of the game. They are kids who were bummed that they lost to Florida after leading at the start of the 4th. Utah in New Orleans, as it turns out, is no laughing matter. But the team was less than 15 minutes from a title shot. It’s hard to motivate a team heavily populated with inexperienced underclassmen in a circumstance like that. That’s what NS is trying to do – instill his guys with a professional attitude where they don’t live on emotion but go out and just et it done whoever they play.

    • I understand injuries happen, but he has never given Utah credit for just beating them as bad as they do. Also, I have said before what does it say about your team when your best player is an offensive lineman. Plus, they do not play defense and it showed that Alabama was not in shape as players were needing subs when Utah ran their 2 minute drill, or that they had trouble tackling from their DB’s,

      All I am saying is give Utah credit for a good win, and yes players can be disappointed for not going to the BCS title, but once they hit the field that should not matter and they want to win.

  2. I give Utah credit for the win. That was a great team with the right game plan. Johnson got the ball out faster than anyone Bama saw all year and it killed them on D.

    There’s no guarentee that a better attitude would have meant a Bama win, but it would have helped.

    As for what it says about a team that the best player is on O-line… Who doesn’t want their best talent up front? The 2008 Tide/Fighting Irish proved by contrasts (if anyone had any doubts) that a great O-line that moves opponents back off the ball will always be the difference maker in college ball.

    Bama had no right being 12-0, except for that line. Is that something to be ashamed of? It’s old school and I love it. Tricks are for clowns, magicians and Mike Leach. Real college ball is played up front.

  3. No excuses period. Utah was the better team on that day.

    The Utah defense would have still given Andre Smith fits. If you haven’t seen Utah in previous bowl games this decade you wouldn’t know what I am talking about.

    Ask Palmer, Almond, Palko, and now JPW how Utah’s bleep tastes.

    The game plan on offense was executed to perfection by Utah, and they punched the Tide in the mouth early. Alabama didn’t know what hit them, and even as a Utah fan I was cheering while picking my jaw off the floor.

    Motivation as an excuse my but. They flat out got worked by Utah. Out coached, and out played you bet. Utah just wins bowl games.

    GO UTES!!!

  4. Way to sound like a Boise fan.

    You guys had a great team. You have a fine program and a coaching staff that clearly knows what they’re doing. The implication that Utah cannot possibly lose a bowl game is silly.

    You might try being more reasonable and acknowledging a little reality. There are a lot of variables in this game. Utah was better. I already said that. But you must know how much psychology matters in CFB. That’s what sets it apart from every other sport. It’s fascinating because it’s unpredictable. If TCU’s kicker had some stones you woouldn’t have even been in New Orleans. But, as I said at the time. If I wanted to watch kickers who only miss from over 55 yards i’d watch the pros. CFB is interesting because sometimes kickers blow seasons on 25 yard chips, and sometimes mighty Bama doesn’t show up against a Utah that plays like the legions of Hades on a revenge tour.

    Do you already have a six touchdown victory penciled in to your calander for the Ute’s trip to FW in November? I sure hope you do. You might learn an important life lesson.

  5. The reason Nick Saban is making excuses is because his team didnt care about that bowl game thats the only reason they lost that game

    http://www.fredjsmilek.com

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