Winning the national championship is every college football coach’s goal at the start of each season, whether realistic or not. But the guy who has won the last two national titles apparently doesn’t like how time consuming it can be.
Nick Saban has led Alabama to back-to-back national titles and hoisted three of the last four crystal balls in college football. But while Tide players could be seen celebrating their victory with “Dynasty” headlined newspapers in one hand and a cigar in the other, Saban may well have been off in the corner sulking.
An in-depth profile of Saban in this week’s issue of GQ portrays the genius head coach as relentless, insatiable and even human with anecdotes from friends, colleagues and fans alike. Among those stories is a tale from his confidant and golf buddy Steven Rumsey. Rumsey, who runs a trash-hauling company, is a golf addict and doesn’t give a lick about ‘Bama football, recalls congratulating Saban on winning the national title in 2011, which prompted an unexpected reaction from the head coach.
“That damn game cost me a week of recruiting,” Rumsey recalled Saban grumbling during a phone call.
At first, Rumsey thought maybe Saban had misheard his comment, but when he offered his congratulations again, Saban repeated himself. Rumsey tried to make sense of Saban’s concern, seeing as he’d just accomplished what every other coach in the country sought. He even noted during the conversation that Saban’s team had just won the title on national television in front of millions of people, including all of the top high school recruits. But Saban still wasn’t sold.
“I said, ‘I’m not sure, but I think that helped you,’” Rumsey reportedly added. “And [Saban] said, ‘I just don’t know. Maybe. Maybe that was good.’”
Even with his seemingly unnecessary concern, Saban still managed to land the nation’s No. 1 recruiting class in 2012, and again this year. As long as Alabama continues to win national titles, Saban should have no problem signing just about any recruit he wants.