Alabama football head coach Nick Saban sent birthday flowers to a player's mother who is battling cancer.
Football coaches typically aren't revered for their empathy and compassion. They have to maintain an image of grit and toughness to attract respect from their players, and more importantly, their opponents. Nick Saban is famous for his icy approach to the game and for never, ever smiling.
But it turns out, Saban isn't an unfeeling robot-coach after all.
Enter Mike Bernier, a transfer from Eastern Illinois to whom Saban offered a preferred walk-on spot. Bernier wanted to be closer to his mother who had been diagnosed with breast cancer.
This week, Bernier's mother celebrated her birthday, and she was in for quite a surprise.
For a guy who has likely seen hundreds of athletes pass through his program, it's awesome to see that Saban personally cares about his players and their families. Kudos to the Sabans.