2013 record: 11-2 overall, 7-1 in SEC (T-1st in SEC West) 2013 postseason: Sugar Bowl vs. Oklahoma (45-31 loss) 2013 final AP/coaches’ ranking: No. 7/No. 8 Head coach: Nick Saban (165-57 overall; 78-16 in seven years at Alabama) Offensive coordinator: Lane Kiffin (first season) 2013 offensive rankings: 25th rushing offense (205.6 ypg); 49th passing offense (248.5 ypg); 33rd total offense (454.1 ypg); 17th scoring offense (38.2 ppg) Returning offensive starters: Eight…
The football team held its second, and final, scrimmage of fall training camp on Saturday afternoon in Bryant-Denny Stadium.
TUSCALOOSA, Alabama – Kirk Herbstreit never flinched, no matter how strong the rumors surrounding Nick Saban’s future grew.
A longtime friend of the Alabama coach, the ESPN college football analyst read all about the Cleveland Browns’ interest in Saban in 2012 during and after the Crimson Tide’s run to a second consecutive BCS National Championship. And when the sports world waited to see whether Saban would entertain the longtime interest Texas had in him, Herbstreit simply waited for the coach to announce he was staying at Alabama.
Herbstreit doesn’t pretend to know when Saban will call it quits at Alabama, but he has a fairly good sense of what the coach might do next.
“Nick Saban will be on the set with us before he’s a coach in the NFL,” said Herbstreit, who broke the news of Saban’s agreement on a new contract with Alabama in December. “I really believe that after he’s done at Alabama, whenever that time is, whether it’s a year, five years, whatever it is, I really believe there’s an itch there about becoming an analyst.”
Those behind the scenes at ESPN would be thrilled to see Saban scratch that itch — whenever it may be. Though the sample size of Saban’s extended TV appearances is relatively minimal, most believe he’ll be strong in the role.
“On camera, he’s a magnet,” said Lee Fitting, who produces the Worldwide Leader’s wildly famous College GameDay pre-game show. “He’s got a great way of expressing the game of football that hits both the hardcore fan and the casual fan by the way in which he explains it.”
His status as one of the most successful coaches in college football history is certainly part of the draw. How comfortable he looks in front of a camera — after years of glaring into them during some of his more heated press conference moments — is what makes him so appealing to the Worldwide Leader.
“He’s camera savvy, which is something that is very unusual for someone that hasn’t done as much TV as Coach has,” Fitting said. “He’s sort of got it all, which is crazy.”
Saban will have many more opportunities to grow even more comfortable before ESPN’s cameras with Thursday’s launch of the SEC Network. Already over the past month, Saban went through his annual “Car Wash” in Bristol, Connecticut, with ESPN and recorded an analysis segment with former Alabama quarterback Greg McElroy. A film crew from the network spent days with Saban during the first week of preseason camp for an upcoming “All-Access” segment and the GameDay bus was on campus today.
Follow the link to read the rest of the story: ESPN’s Kirk Herbstreit says Nick Saban’s next stop won’t be the NFL. But where? | AL.com.