Nick Saban is arguably the best coach in college football history, but even he has to learn from other coaches every now and then.
In a conversation with reporters, the Alabama head coach discussed how SEC offenses and defenses have changed over the past few years. His comments came after Alabama out-dueled Ole Miss by a final score of 63-48.
Saban gave credit to one former SEC coach who seemed to change the game. The six-time national champion said former Ole Miss coach Hugh Freeze shaped how he transformed his offense.
According to college football insider Bruce Feldman, Saban said Freeze’s tempo and run-pass options forced him to make a change. “When you can beat em, join em,” Saban said.
Nick Saban credits Hugh Freeze and how many problems his #OleMiss offenses caused with tempo and RPOs for changing his mindset at Alabama when it came to re-shaping his own approach to offensive football: “When you can’t beat em, you join em.”
— Bruce Feldman (@BruceFeldmanCFB) October 14, 2020
It’s difficult enough to beat Nick Saban once, but Hugh Freeze and his Ole Miss Rebels took down the Tide twice. Freeze became one of only a handful of coaches to beat Saban more than once.
Freeze took down the Tide in back-to-back years in 2014 and 2015 and nearly did for a third time in 2016.
Clearly that had a lasting impact on Saban, who transformed how his team played on offense. Over the past few years, Alabama has had one of the highest-scoring offenses in college football.
Even without star quarterback Tua Tagovailoa, the Crimson Tide’s offense is firing on all cylinders yet again this season.
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