Alabama Football: Nick Saban’s greatest coaching performance needed

Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports
Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports /

A disappointing Saturday will not magically transform into an optimistic Sunday for Alabama Football. The old age of feeling better after a good night’s rest will not provide much solace for many Crimson Tide fans.

In the harsh light of a Sunday morning, a reality stares Alabama fans in the face. The 2023 Alabama football team is in a hole and at this point, it has not stopped digging.

Nick Saban did not overreact after the game Saturday night. When he spoke to the media, he was subdued. He complimented his team for their effort in gutting out a win. He talked about problem areas needing to be fixed. As always, Saban will be resolute in striving to improve the performance of the team.

The Alabama football defense is not the dominating force Crimson Tide fans anticipated. It has improved over last season and shows signs it will continue to improve as this season progresses. A Lane Kiffin offense or an LSU offense might light up the 2023 Alabama defense, but game losses don’t loom because of potential defensive failures.

The Crimson Tide offense is something else entirely. How bad is the Alabama offense? A veteran of watching and writing about Alabama football teams, Chase Goodbread put it this way,

"If Alabama’s offense was a car, the engine died and the wheels fell off on Saturday …"

Most cars however can be repaired. There is justification to doubt the Crimson Tide offense is repairable. Alabama does not have a championship-level quarterback and that is not the worst problem. Alabama’s offensive line was billed by themselves and many others to be ‘All-Worldly’ this season. They are nowhere close to such status.

Disturbing Stats for Alabama Football Fans

  • Western Kentucky had a prolific offense last season, winning nine games. Though, the Hilltoppers managed only 17 points in a loss to Auburn. In this season’s week one WKU beat USF 41-24 while passing for 336 yards. Saturday afternoon the Crimson Tide passed for 107 yards against USF. WKU lost to Ohio State on Saturday, 63-10.
  • Another troubling stat is in week two, in its loss to USF, Florida A&M passed for 344 yards.
  • Roydell Williams was a savior for Alabama football against USF, rushing for 129 yards. The Tide’s offensive line deserves some credit for those yards, but Roydell’s production was also the result of tough, hard-nosed running. According to PFF, shared by Nick Kelly, 103 of Roydell’s yards came after contact. Without some balance from a passing attack, such a performance from Williams may not be possible against better defensive teams.

Message boards are filled with what Nick Saban and Alabama must do. Many of the must-dos apply to quarterback play. Obviously, Alabama must have better quarterback play, but ‘Bryce Young’ magic should not be needed for a roster loaded with talent.

Note: Game stats provided by Sports Reference and

Next. Retooling offensive line options. dark

Unless the Tide’s offensive line can show marked improvement, Nick Saban’s best-ever coaching performance may not be enough.