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Are You Serious?! You Mad Edition

Recruiting is strong at the University of Alabama. Over the years, Alabama has racked up some amazing players and since 1892, the Tide has had a total of 47 consensus All-America selections. Alabama is a hub for fantastic players and has a rich tradition of snagging guys that would later become All-Americans. However, if you are going to be a hater, at least get the facts right. To imply that Saban can only win with 10-15 All-Americans:

Are you serious?!

First of all, let’s get one thing straight. For one to be considered an All-American, there is a process one has to go through. Because Alabama is in Division I of the NCAA, they can participate in the All-America selections. Basically they are individual recognitions for players after a number of publications release their lists of who would make up their ideal team.

The NCAA recognizes the Associated Press, American Football Coaches Association, the Football Writers Association of America, Sporting News and the Walter Camp Football Foundation. Numerous players can be up for this award, but in order for them to receive a consensus selection, they must be selected as first team in three of the five lists. There are also unanimous selections (Alabama has had 18 unanimous selections in its history), who must be selected as first team in all five lists.

Now that the rules are out of the way, I should note that Nick Saban has only coached for the University since 2007, and from that point until now, has coached a total of 5 consensus All-Americans and 6 unanimous All-Americans. That’s over the course of 5 seasons. While that is impressive, it certainly does not mean that he has 10-15 All-Americans each year to help him win. In fact, for the 2011 season, there were only four All-Americans. The All-Americans he has coached at Alabama: Antoine Caldwell, Terrence Cody, Andre Smith, Javier Arenas, Mark Ingram, Mike Johnson, Rolando McClain, Mark Barron, Dont’a Hightower, Barrett Jones and Trent Richardson have been amazing, but they weren’t all there at one time.

Nick Saban is one of the best for many reasons. Certainly, one of the key factors to his success is the players he chooses. I should ask though; would some of those players be where they are today without his coaching ability? It’s possible. However, his disciplinary tactics, motivational speeches, recruiting genius, football knowledge and coaching ability make a world of difference in the lives of his players. Many of them have stated this publicly. Let’s also not forget that Saban has been the coach of several teams, and is known for bringing them from the bottom to the top. There aren’t many All-Americans at the bottom. Bringing programs out of the gutter is sort of his specialty.

So, does Alabama have a stout record of All-Americans? Sure. Were there 10-15 on the roster this season? No. Are his successful players the only reason Nick Saban should be considered a great coach? Please, you already know the answer to this one.

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