Nick Saban has learned a lot about public relations since unceremonious exits from LSU and the Miami Dolphins made him one of the most despised coaches in sports, with an enemies list longer than Nixon's.
He now says all the right things post-game, giving a litany of carefully worded, pitch perfect (if robotically monotone) responses that make the game's greatest competitor seem almost bored with winning -- as he did last night after collecting, oh, only his fourth national championship:
"I don't think words like 'dynasty' are really words that I'm much interested in...I think it's really special. And one of these days, when I'm sitting on the side of a hill watching the stream go by, I'll probably figure it out even more. But what about next year's team? You've got to think about that, too."
Come on. Even Nick Saban isn't fooled by Nick Saban's 'one practice, one game, one season at a time' act: while downplaying dynasty talk Saban can't help thinking about "next year's team." Saban not only has dynastic dreams, he has the coaching talent and track record to end his career as the single greatest college football coach in history -- yes, even passing that other Alabama great Bear Bryant.
Arguably, one proud Southern university can now boast the two best coaches ever. Amazing.
Some would argue that Bama's loss to Texas A&M and its Heisman-winning freshman quarterback prodigy John "Johnny Football" Manziel means Alabama was not nearly as good as they looked.
Nope. Sportswriters said the same things last year, when Bama entered the title game ranked #2, as they did this year, and with one loss, as they did this year. Except in last year's title game, they were playing again the team to which they'd lost to a month before: #1 ranked LSU.
Looking like a brand new team, Alabama stunned the sports media by shutting out LSU 21-0. At least Notre Dame managed to score twice, though the Irish defense -- billed as the best in the land before being exposed last nights -- gave up over twice as many points. Oops.
The computer and human voters got caught up in Notre Dame's historical sheen. They forgot that nobody better prepares for big games than Saban, nor can make his players better with just a few weeks instruction. If Texas A&M -- or any other team -- played Alabama last night they would have lost and it would have been just as authoritative.
Observers would be foolish to ever again bet against a Saban-coached Alabama team.