Saban & assistant coaches

Ray Melick explores the relationship between Nick Saban and his assistant coaches in a column in Tuesday’s Birmingham News. Melick makes a few good points:

“The culture of Crimson Tide football would have you believe there is nothing more important than Alabama football, which is apparently the same attitude Saban has when it comes to coaching for him.”

Paul Finebaum has pointed out on his radio program several times that persons within the coaching business are critical of the staff Saban has assembled. He’s said there were a few bright spots, but some of the rest where unspectacular.

This is what makes Saban a great coach. He understands what is needed from subordinates is not the brightest minds in the world, but the most diligent and obedient.

Having talented subordinates helps, but often as talent increases insubordination and poor attitude also increase. Big ego in the possession of staff members can ruin morale and destroy the work environment, whether it be in sports or business.

Having managed a business staff, I can tell you the best employees are not the most talented, but the ones that do what they are supposed to do, when they are supposed to do it.

Good workers understand one person is the boss, and the rest must conform to his way of doing things.

“…that he is, above all, a control freak, who expects everyone to conform to his way, his moods, his methods.”

That’s the benefit of being in charge. You get to make the rules and set the expectations. People afraid of excellence are afraid of accountability to the best. If an assistant coach is frightened by this, then he shouldn’t be welcomed on the Alabama staff.