Alabama Football: Ranking Best and Worst ‘Saban Tree’ Head Coaches

Bama Saban And Kiffin 2016
Bama Saban And Kiffin 2016 /
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Alabama Football
Ivan Pierre Aguirre-USA TODAY Sports /

The ‘Saban Tree’ of coaches has so many branches, ranking all the coaches would be nearly impossible. What is manageable is a ranking of 18 college head coaches who have worked for Saban. Most, but not all, have been Alabama football staff members.

The different conferences and in one case a different level where the coaches have worked make any ranking problematic. The categories used in these rankings are National Championships; Conference Championships; Overall Winning Percentage and Best Winning Percentage at a single school.

The 18, former or current head coaches have led or lead teams at 29 different schools. The competition in the respective conferences and the wide range of program resources factor significantly in coaching success or failure. The rankings make no attempt at weighting the measurement based on those differences.

Former  Alabama Football or Nick Saban Assistants and National Championships

Only two coaches have reached this level of achievement. Kirby Smart (2021) and Jimbo Fisher (2013) have coached teams to National Championships. Two more of the coaches have led CFB Playoff and FCS Playoff teams. They are Mark Dantonio at Michigan State and Curt Cignetti at (FCS) James Madison.

Conference Championships

  • Curt Cignetti (4); two at Indiana University of Pennslyvania (IUP) and two at James Madison
  • Mark Dantonio (3) at Michigan State
  • Jimbo Fisher (3) at Florida State
  • Mario Cristobal (3); one at Florida International and two at Oregon
  • Butch Jones (2) at Central Michigan
  • Lane Kiffin (2) at Florida Atlantic
  • Billy Napier (2) at Louisiana
  • Kirby Smart (1) at Georgia