When Nick Saban took center stage at SEC Media Days, though he answered a number of questions on numerous topics, his opening statement and message were clear: the quarterback competition is to be determined.
Media members asked him to provide more specifics, but Saban wanted none of it as he continued to push his point that the competition is open, it will continue to open, and whoever wins the team will win the starting job.
Saban spoke briefly on the off-season with the usual talking points about players doing the things on the field and in the classroom necessary to win and the growth of each individual player to be at their best. One talking point that Saban brings up each and every year that has become more of a public call to arms to his players regards leadership.
“Are we going to have the leadership and who will step up,” Saban said as he tried to put as much space between last year’s team and this one.
Saban also spoke on the new redshirt rule and how beneficial the rule will be for players and coaches. Saban pointed out that with the rule, the development of players and determining where they are in their development is something coaches can make now.
Speaking of individual players, Saban informed the media that former linebacker Keith Holcombe has made the decision to focus on baseball and baseball alone going forward. Many had speculated on Holcombe’s return, especially with the news that fellow linebacker Terrell Lewis is out indefinitely and the departure of VanDarius Cowan. The linebacker unit will be thinner with Holcombe focusing on his baseball career.
Saban was also asked about his new coordinators and the roles they have to fill. Saban had great things to say about new offensive coordinator Mike Locksley, who has spent time as a coordinator and a head coach in the past, all of which Saban spoke on when asked about Locksley. Saban also touched on first-time defensive coordinator Tosh Lupoi as well as Pete Golding. While Lupoi has never called games, Saban stressed that bringing in Golding was crucial because Golding has playing calling experience and will be instrumental in helping Lupoi’s growth as a coach.
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