Nick Saban Taps Into Baseball Legend For Advice On How To Handle Players

Desperate to reclaim the college football throne from rival Georgia, Alabama Head Coach Nick Saban is leaving no stone unturned in preparing his players for upcoming 2023 season.

Interestingly, Saban has turned to the world of baseball for guidance on how to deal with different types of players and personalities. 

Speaking to reporters, Saban highlighted the importance of instilling a physical mindset within his team.

“We’ve got some guys who play pretty physical. We’ve got some guys who need to get more physical. I kind of like what Pete Rose said the other night,” Saban said.

He went on to share insights he gained from Sparky Anderson, a revered figure in baseball history.

“Sparky Anderson was a great manager, and he asked him one time, what’s the key to handling players? (Anderson) said ‘Well, you’ve got to know when to kick them in the ass, you’ve got to know when to pat them on the ass, and you’ve got to know when not to say anything,'” Saban recounted.

Saban’s approach to coaching is a delicate balance, and he acknowledged the challenge of finding the right moments for motivation and encouragement.

“So, we’re trying to figure that out. But I think I’ve been kicking them in the ass a little more than I’ve been patting them on the ass. So we’ll just keep on keeping on [laughs],” he jokingly added.

As the Crimson Tide continue their preparations for the quickly-approaching season, the team had a heated scrimmage over the weekend.

The intense session served as a litmus test for the players, providing valuable insights into their progress and readiness for the grueling road that lies ahead. 

Saban and the Tide will kick off the season on Saturday, September 2nd against Middle Tennessee State.

How do you think Alabama will do this season?

How many more national championships do you think Saban has up his sleeve, if any?

In the bigger picture, how much longer until he hangs up the whistle and retires for good?