Nick Saban Discusses Texas A&M Quarterback Kellen Mond and Offensive Balance on 'Hey Coach'
TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — Alabama football coach Nick Saban takes to the radio airwaves again on Thursday night in his weekly radio show 'Hey Coach.'
The show airs every Thursday night during the college football season and airs on 95.3 The Bear in Tuscaloosa. Eli Gold of the Crimson Tide Sports Network serves as host of the show.
On Thursday night, Saban highlighted Texas A&M quarterback Kellen Mond, noting that he's one of the best quarterbacks in the SEC this season.
"He's really a dual-threat guy," Saban said. "Scrambling, extending plays, he's really developed. He's improved his reading and passing efficiency. That's what I see. To me he is one of the more experienced quarterbacks and talented quarterbacks in the league."
The question on the Aggies quarterback segued into a question about Alabama starting quarterback Mac Jones, who had a solid start in the Crimson Tide's season opener against Missouri, going 18-24 with 248 yards and two touchdowns.
"I think having balance on offense is really important," Saban said. "I think we've always had that. Obviously last year we had that with Tua [Tagovailoa] and Mac did a good job when he took over. Obviously we have all the confidence in the world in Mac."
Some other guest for this week's episode include Alabama softball coach Patrick Murphy and UA athletics director of gameday operations Davis Blair. Cecil Hurt of The Tuscaloosa News is this week's media guest.
You can also view the show on UA Athletics' various social media accounts:
Alabama enters Texas A&M at 1-0 after winning its season opener against Missouri in Columbia 38-19. The Aggies also start their season 1-0 after struggling to overcome the Vanderbilt Commodores in College Station.
Saban and Alabama football are now slated to take on four-consecutive teams that are coached by former assistants under Saban: Jimbo Fisher at Texas A&M, Lane Kiffin at Ole Miss, Kirby Smart at Georgia and Jeremy Pruitt at Tennessee.
Expect Saban to discuss what went right against Missouri and what needs improvement heading into Texas A&M on tonight's edition of 'Hey Coach.'
Highlights of Hey Coach with Nick Saban
- Davis Blair, UA director of gameday operations, will be joining the show first due to Alabama opening its season in Bryant-Denny Stadium to discuss gameday procedures for fans.
- Blair: "Gamedays will look a little bit different this year in Tuscaloosa."
- Blair: Biggest change of the 2020 season is the complete switch to mobile-only tickets in order to reduce contact and expedite entry into Bryant-Denny Stadium.
- For those having issues getting their tickets through email, call 348-BAMA for assistance.
- Changes to parking: lots will open three hours earlier than normal to reduce chance of contact for fans. All parking passes have also gone completely mobile.
- Blair encourages those that don't have tickets to please refrain from attending outside the stadium. Tailgating of any kind on Alabama's campus is prohibited.
- Patrick Murphy, Alabama softball coach, is now joining the show via Zoom.
- Murphy started off his segment by thanking the medical staff for the team and UA's medical team.
- Murphy points out his deep roster and deep pitching rotation thanks to all 2019 seniors being granted an extra year of eligibility. More on that next segment.
- Murphy on no fall softball for freshmen: "This is something that they're going to learn from for years to come."
- All seven seniors return for Alabama softball this season and five freshmen join the team.
- Nick Saban has now joined the broadcast along with Cecil Hurt.
- Hurt pointed out Saban's background, which was recently revealed to be decorated by Saban's daughter, Kristen.
- Saban on Landon Dickerson being named as a semifinalist for the William V. Campbell Trophy: "What it represents [...] it's one of the most prestigious awards. For Landon to be one of the semifinalists is really really special."
- Saban's feed was lost, but Gold just pointed out how Saban is now 19-0 against former assistants and if everything goes according to plan, Saban could be 23-0 after the next four games.
- Hurt on how newspapers and internet journalists have been impacted by COVID-19: "It's been an adjustment as it has been for everyone else." Talked about how long journalists went without covering a live event and how tough that adjustment was.
- Saban on coaching against four former assistants in a row: "It makes me proud that we've had a lot of guys. It makes me proud but also speaks to the tremendous success that we've had."
- Saban continued on former assistant coaches: "It makes me very proud but it also makes me very happy for them and their families."
- Saban on young players, particularly the young wide receivers: "I think the young players need to learn how to learn. Every play that you have a failing on is the best opportunity that you have to learn but if you get frustrated by it then it'll take you a while."
- Saban rating secondary: "I was encouraged by how they played. They played with a lot of effort. Our corners did a good job of covering. That was a challenging first game for anybody in the secondary. This is one of the most difficult adjusting games that we'll probably have all year long."
- Hurt's mic is having difficulties so the struggles continue for the virtual broadcast team.
- Speaking on running backs, Saban repeated his mantra of players needing to create value for themselves and that they need to understand that they shouldn't want to play 35 rushes a game because they need to "have tread on their tires" when they head off to the next level.
- Gold just brought up that while Missouri has 12 players in the NFL, Alabama has over 60.
- Saban on how recruiting continues to be successful: "I think that when you create value for your players that's why people continue to want to come and do that."
- Saban on Texas A&M quarterback Kellen Mond: "He's really a dual-threat guy. Scrambling, extending plays, he's really developed. He's improved his reading and passing efficiency. That's what I see. To me he is one of the more experienced quarterbacks and talented quarterbacks in the league."
- Saban talking about this year's offense: "I think having balance on offense is really important. I think we've always had that. Obviously last year we had that with Tua and Mac did a good job when he took over. Obviously we have all the confidence in the world in Mac."
- Saban notes that he think that it has been easier to recruit in the state of Texas since Texas A&M joined the SEC. Says that it's always good when your league has exposure, and he feels that when Texas A&M joined the conference it opened the door to the SEC market wider in the Lone Star State.
- Christian Barmore is doing really well in practice. Saban says that he's been practicing 100 percent and should be playing this weekend.
- Saban said he was worried when his team travelled to Missouri and had to stay in a hotel. Was concerned that his players or staff could have contracted COVID-19 due to being outside of the 'Bama Bubble.'
- "This has been an unusual year with a lot of uncertainties," said Saban.