All he was asking is for was a little respect.
Wednesday night around 6 pm Central Standard Time, there was an explosion on Twitter as University of Alabama head coach Nick Saban spoke to the media. The session didn’t last but 6 minutes, however the Crimson Tide coach had plenty to say about the perception of Saturday’s home opener with the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers.
It was the second time in as many months that Saban spoke so sternly, voicing his frustrations before a reporter could ask a single question. As I’ve mentioned before, this is normally a telltale sign that he is speaking to his team.
In a week where Alabama is coming off a 41-14 win over the Michigan Wolverines, receiving the number one ranking, the move is genius. Instead of hearing compliments every time they turn on the TV or hop on the internet, his team will be reminded of what coach Saban had to say Wednesday night.
“What makes the really good players good? What makes the really good teams good? They have those intangibles that make them good. It’s been work every day around here to keep our guys on track to play with humility and confidence.” Saban exclaimed.
“We win one game and I can’t believe what gets written. We did play two teams in these neutral site games before then played horrible in the next week because a lot of the same stuff happened.”
While Alabama fans remember winning national championships, Saban remembers something different.
He remembers 2008 when his team destroyed the Clemson Tigers on national TV 34-10, only to struggle to beat Tulane the following week. He remembers the way his team didn’t play the way they were supposed to against Florida Atlantic in 2009 after a week one victory against Virginia Tech. He remembers the 2010 season when his team felt they could beat any team in the country just by showing up. He also knows he can’t afford to have the same slip up this week against Western Kentucky.
The Hilltoppers are a team that has a chip on their shoulder. They finished 7-5 in 2011 and were left out of the post season bowl picture. Winning 8 of their last 9 games Western Kentucky is riding a wave of disrespect and momentum into Tuscaloosa, believing that they could do the impossible and trip up the Crimson Tide if Alabama doesn’t come ready to play.
Alabama fans will read this and believe there is no way Alabama could slip this weekend. However, they are probably the same fans that thought there was no way Alabama would ever loose to UL-Monroe.
Don’t get me wrong, if Alabama plays the way they are capable of, I don’t think there is a team in the country that can touch them. However, if they don’t play the way they’re capable of, that’s another story.
It all starts with a little respect.