In his seven years at the Capstone, Alabama head coach Nick Saban has put his stamp on the SEC, to say the least. More like a branding iron, Saban has made the league a 1 + 13 affair as every other school in the league rises and rests on the thoughts of Alabama football.
Heck, Auburn even branded a meeting room in their football complex with the Tide’s name.
If the Southeastern Conference were an overpass, you’d see “Saban Wuz Here” on every concrete pole as you drove by…on every overpass…for a hundred miles.
The result of this Crimson sledgehammer Saban has delivered to the faces of every other team in the conference is an SEC Media Days that revolves around his Crimson Tide.
Sure, beat writers will still make sure readers from their team’s following get a healthy dose of meaningless blather about the team that will end up 3rd in their division, 5th overall. We’ll hear all about Jay Prosch, Kaleb Eulls, and Andrew Wilson, as well as other players you couldn’t match with their respective team if there were a gun to your head. That is, as long as their team’s day isn’t on the same one as Alabama’s.
There will be a few head turners in the group. Johnny Manziel will take a break from his relentless immaturity to show up in a suit. As will the dominant Jadeveon Clowney. Les Miles will be good for a quip or two, as will Steve Spurrier.
But the week starts and stops on the arrival of Nick Saban, and everybody there with media credentials or their team’s colors on knows it. The man who brought dignity and dominance back to Tuscaloosa will once again stop the show when his helicopter lands and he steps behind the lectern.
There have been some interesting moments in the past, like when Phil Fulmer refused to come, taking a $10,000 hit on account of fear of being served with a subpoena. There was the year Clay Travis defied all lows, taking his doucheness to a new level in asking Tim Tebow if he was a virgin. And then there was the truth Saban himself spoke of himself, calling some agents “pimps” for their handling of the young men they don’t give a rip about outside of the profit margin. Or the stir he caused in chastising a fan for wearing an “I Hate Auburn” shirt to the gathering.
So what will happen this year? We don’t have to wait long to see, as 2013’s SEC Media Days get underway Tuesday at the Hyatt Regency Birmingham (The Wynfrey Hotel). One thing is for sure. In this game of Saban, Alabama and everybody else, the world will be waiting to see what Bama’s rock star head coach has to say.