For Nick Saban and Alabama Football it’s still lonely at the top

(Photo by Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images)
(Photo by Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images) /

Alabama Football is still at the top? Yes, but not in the way being on top is usually measured. After the loss to Texas, the Crimson Tide is not at the top of any current season ranking. It is also not on any list of the four most likely CFB Playoff teams.

Many in the national media who cover college football immediately seized on ‘this is the end’ themes about Saban and the Crimson Tide. One day, in a future no one can predict, the premature epitaphs for Nick Saban will prove true. That time is not now and as such stories about a Saban retirement being imminent are just sleazy journalism.

Hate of Nick Saban has always been largely driven by jealousy. The hate bubbles up quickly whenever Saban and Alabama Football look vulnerable.

The way Alabama lost to Texas shows an increasing level of vulnerability that has been growing since Alabama lost a 4th quarter lead and a National Championship to Georgia 20 months ago.

Alabama Football did not end that January night at the top of the CFB world. However, the expectations for the Alabama football program did not change with that loss. And they did not change when Alabama missed the Playoff and Georgia won the National Championship again last season.

Saban and Alabama Football Top All Expectations

Alabama Football and Nick Saban are still at the top of what is demanded of a program year after year. Only at Alabama does a failure to win a National Championship define a season as a bust. Not even Georgia carries that weight. If the Bulldogs do not achieve a three-peat this season, the Georgia season will not be considered a bust. Instead, the story will be that winning three in a row is practically impossible.

What has happened to Alabama since the January night in Indianapolis, is the Crimson Tide has lost three football games. Two of them were lost on last plays and the combined point deficit in those games was four points.

Did Alabama look vulnerable rather than invincible against Tennessee and LSU last season? Absolutely. Was Alabama outplayed by a Texas team that in one game was clearly better than the Crimson Tide? Again the answer is unequivocally yes.

The reality of the sport is sometimes teams lose badly. But in Tuscaloosa, losing badly is a sin. The possibility of going three football seasons without a national championship is considered tantamount to the end of life as we know it. Such insanity causes many to pay attention to the self-serving attackers of college football’s greatest coach of all time – and college football’s greatest all-time program.

So be it. The 2023 Alabama football team will improve. It could go to Atlanta 11-1, and it is too far out to predict what would come next.

Next. Reading the tea leaves. dark

Another way to measure Nick Saban’s success is the rejuvenation of Steve Sarkisian’s career. Before and after Saturday night’s game Sark stated without Saban and Alabama, his life would not be what it is today.