Nick Saban Appears on Truss Levelz Podcast
Former Crimson Tide running back, Mark Ingram, invited Nick Saban onto his and Cameron Jordan's podcast, Truss Levelz, in order to catch up with his former coach and gain some knowledge from the seven-time national champion.
Saban, though not typically known for his media availability, was eager to appear on the show, letting both players know his immense respect for them from the start.
"I always have respect for great competitors, and the two of you are great competitors," Saban continued with a smile, "I'm glad to do it, and maybe I'm gonna learn something today."
Opening the interview, Jordan asked the legendary coach about his knack to consistently develop players at a high level, to which Saban responded, "It's really a credit to all of the coaches we have here and the organization. We're always trying to get better and find a better way, so guys have to buy in and you have to have a culture in your organization where people want to have success."
Continuing the interview, Jordan mentioned Saban's experience in both the professional and collegiate ranks. Saban's NFL career, although mostly remembered now by his brief stint with the Dolphins, did see the coach become one of the league's top coordinators of the 1990s, helping the Browns field some of the most feared defensive units of the decade.
Adding a unique take on the transition between college and the NFL, Saban said, "I don't think the way you coach players is any different. In my experience, college is about getting to the NFL and guys in the NFL care about extending their careers," Saban continued, "The biggest difference is how you bring players to your team. Free agency really changed everything."
Diving into what solidified his choice of the Crimson Tide, Ingram shared a story on Saban's recruiting pitch that he delivered in 2008 to the then four-star running back.
"He sat in my living room and he told me, 'If you come to Alabama, we'll have a pretty good team your first year, but I think we'll win the national championship your second year,' and let me tell you he was verbatim." Ingram carried on, "Coach literally sat in my living room in Flint, MI and said that to my mom, my grandpa and me."
Saban, laughing, responded, "That was recruiting. I didn't know for sure, I just wanted you to come to Alabama," receiving a roar of laughter from Ingram and Jordan.
Further continuing the conversation, Saban previewed the 2021 season but was reluctant to make any predictions, saying, "I think every season is challenging because you lose about 25% of your team each year, and we lost a lot of good offensive players. I think we will have a different kind of team this year, in terms of explosiveness, but the way I look at it is that every year you take a new job. Sometimes they come together well and sometimes it's more difficult, but I think we have a lot of good players."
The trio closed out the conversation talking about everything from the decision of Tua over Jalen Hurts to coach's oft-discussed golf game. For a coach that is typically viewed as a fiery dictator over his team, seeing him interact with a former player in this setting is a breath of fresh air. The entire interview can be found here, and highlights can be found on Ingram's Twitter account.