Alabama football almost lost head coach Nick Saban to a stampede of players returning an interception during the spring game on Saturday.
The last thing any coach wants during a spring game is an injury, especially to himself.
Nick Saban stared down that possibility on Saturday and lived to tell the tale.
An interception return headed straight for the Alabama head coach, who stood in and managed to avoid getting tackled into the turf.
That stampede would have destroyed a younger man. Nick Saban is 69 years old. He would have been toast.
Thankfully, the Alabama players knew better than to crush the seven-time national championship winner.
Nick Saban picked the right outfit for Alabama’s spring game
It turns out Saban’s pink jacket isn’t entirely for fashion. It’s to protect him in exactly this situation.
Nick Saban on being part of interception return: “If they run into me, it’s very similiar to running into the goal post. So it’s not a good choice and decision for them. They usually avoid me. I wear a [pink jacket] so they can see me for their safety, not mine."
— Mike Rodak (@mikerodak) April 17, 2021
And here, it seemed like Saban was trying to start a trend like Bear Bryant.
Saban is entering his 16th year with Alabama with hopes of adding to his championship tally. He’ll need his offense to return a few interceptions this year to get there. That’s probably what was on his mind while watching those white jerseys storm towards him.
Kristian Story was the one who nabbed the pick in this case, punishing quarterback Braxton Barker for his mistake.
It’ll help if the offense turns up as well. Saban has reason to feel good about the performance of presumptive quarterback starter Bryce Young. The sophomore went 25-for-44 with 333 yards and a touchdown while grabbing A-Day MVP honors. Young’s White Team bested the Crimson Team 13-10 at Bryant-Denny Stadium in front of nearly 50,000 fans.