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Bowden On Bama’s Saban: “He Doesn’t Let Up”

gfx - they said itTucked into an interesting feature in GQ Magazine on Alabama coach Nick Saban, former Florida State coach Bobby Bowden praises the uber-successful Crimson Tide coach… while also admitting that successful coaches have a tendency to get a little fat and happy:


“The thing that amazes me about him is that he doesn’t let up.  People start winning, they slack off.  But he just keeps jumping on ‘complacency, complacency, complacency.’  Most coaches don’t think like that.”


The piece — titled “Nick Saban: Sympathy for the Devil” — a good read.  But the Bowden quote stands out as it shows two things.  First, that Saban is different from most other coaches.  (Steve Spurrier can probably be put in that same category.)  Second, that even a legendary coach like Bowden can admit that sometimes winning coaches do grow complacent.

That idea has long been kicked around with regards to numerous SEC coaches who’ve won big only to start winning small.  This writer has found it hard to believe that people geared toward winning ever lose the desire to win.  Instead, I’ve stated — and I still believe — that a bigger problem for successful coaches is the ability to adapt to changes in their environment.  If you’ve had success doing X, why change X?  Even if everyone else is now doing Y.

But Bowden’s comment is an interesting one.  Because it shows Saban’s strength.  And because it shows a potential weakness that successful coaches must fight to avoid.

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WOW Headlines – 1/3/13

Louisville upset Florida 33-23 in the Sugar Bowl Wednesday night
The SEC is now 3-3 in bowl games this season with Texas A&M, Ole Miss and Alabama yet to play
Alabama C Barrett Jones says he will play in Monday’s BCS Championship Game against Notre Dame
With a win on Monday, Alabama’s seniors will have won three national titles, more than Joe Paterno and Bobby Bowden combined for in their entire careers
Florida juniors Matt Elam and Sharrif Floyd will forego their senior season and entire the NFL draft
Butch Jones’ staff at Tennessee will be paid just over three million years this year
Memphis basketball coach Josh Pastner: “I know some media people are Tennessee fans. They disguise themselves Memphis fans.”
Tennessee and Memphis play Friday night – Pastner says he has no interest in continuing the series
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SEC Headlines – (Mostly) Expansion Edition

Looking at some of the SEC-centric writing from around the nation this morning, expansion continues to be the hottest topic out there.  But this is the SEC we’re talking about, so naturally there are new accusations, allegations and rumors surrounding the football programs at Auburn and Alabama.  We’ve thrown those in at the bottom.


1.  Ex-Florida State coach Bobby Bowden said this weekend that he would be “shocked” if FSU switched conferences.

2.  Some Georgia football assistants with ties to Florida State and Virginia Tech talked expansion this weekend.

3.’s Andy Staples reaffirms the belief that the SEC did not slam the door on A&M… it just slowed the process down.

4.’s Dennis Dodd says A&M should still be embarrassed this morning.

5.  Pete Fiutak of says fans should want superconferences.

6. — the Rivals site covering the University of Texas — claims that the SEC and A&M will announce a union with 21 days.

7. is still showing photos of Alabama football players dining with the owner of T-Town Menswear.

8. reports that USA Today oddsmaker Danny Sheridan claims he knows the name of the alleged bagman in the Auburn/Cam Newton scandal.  Naturally, Sheridan promises to reveal more on Paul Finebaum’s radio show this week.


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