Skip to main content

Nick Saban's Idea To Get Players Up To Speed This Fall

Alabama coach Nick Saban raising both of his arms.

TUSCALOOSA, AL - NOVEMBER 24: Head coach Nick Saban of the Alabama Crimson Tide runs warmups prior to facing the Auburn Tigers at Bryant-Denny Stadium on November 24, 2018 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)

Rather than worry about the loss of preparation time for the 2020 Alabama football season, Nick Saban is adapting. Earlier, he discussed the Apple Watch-based workout system devised by his staff, and seems pretty happy with how thing have gone so far.

Saban understands that spring football of some sort is almost definitely out the window. The SEC hasn't officially ruled on that situation yet. Still, the likelihood of any kind of padded practice before the summer is extremely slim.

The Alabama head coach, who is notorious for having his teams well-prepared, has come up with an idea for how to get some extra work in, without doing anything extreme, given the current health crisis. Saban isn't looking to get the 15 spring practices back. That's unrealistic. He would like to see some extra teaching sessions allowed by the NCAA, before August practice.

"I’m not talking about having pads on or anything," Saban said in a media teleconference, according to "But just be able to teach system, teach scheme.” He thinks this would make a huge difference ahead of the season.

The SEC is allowing coaches two hours per week of virtual training, with players away from campus for the foreseeable future. Nick Saban thinks that will help. He also doesn't believe a flat expansion of full practice in the summer would be as beneficial as installation work, citing health concerns.

“I don’t personally think making fall camp longer is going to get anybody any more ready to play. If you look at statistics historically on concussions, injuries -- the most concentrated time that you practice and not play is in fall camp. You have more practices, you have to spend more time on the field.

"So I don’t know that increasing that is going to be beneficial in getting people ready to play. I think if you could do simulated training programs in the summertime that wouldn’t involve that much contact, or even any contact, that would be just as beneficial at that point.”

Of course, this is all predicated on players getting to campus sometime this summer. That obviously remains very up in the air.