For the first time since 2013, Nick Saban and the Alabama Crimson Tide will not be contending for the national title. 2019 was ultimately a big disappointment after five straight years in the College Football Playoff, but ESPN’s Paul Finebaum thinks it’s a lot worse than that.
Appearing on ESPN’s First Take on Wednesday, Finebaum was asked by Molly Qerim-Rose if Nick Saban’s run of dominance with Alabama is now over.
Without missing a beat, Finebaum answered, “Yes.”
Finebaum went on to explain that while Alabama could win another national title, they won’t win them by the handful the way they won five in the last nine years.
“I think that window is closing. I’m not saying it’s shut tight, I’m not saying he can’t win another title – although I think it’s gonna be more difficult…”
Alabama finished the regular season with multiple losses for the first time since 2010. After being ranked outside of the top seven in the latest College Football Playoff poll, it’s clear that they would not be in the tournament.
Bear in mind, Alabama’s two losses came by a combined eight points to two top 10 teams. And in both of those games, superstar quarterback Tua Tagovailoa was either coming off an injury or not playing.
By contrast, Georgia’s one loss came at home to lowly South Carolina – a team Alabama beat by 24 points.
Just as 2013 ultimately wasn’t the end for Nick Saban’s run, it seems a little too early to assert that Alabama is done.
2020 will be a pivotal year for Saban. It’s a good thing he’s already assembled a stellar recruiting class to fill the voids.