Here's the kind of Nick Saban statistic that will make your jaw drop.
When the coach arrived at Alabama in 2007, the Crimson Tide subsequently had three player selected in the NFL draft that spring, none higher than fullback Le'Ron McClain in the fourth round.
Alabama subsequently had no players selected in 2008.
It was the first time the program had been shut out since 1970.
Since 2009, Alabama has produced 111 draft picks, the most by any college football program during that span, while the Crimson Tide has had at least seven draft picks for 11 straight years (2012–22).
For a little perspective, consider that from 2009-22, there have been 14 drafts, with seven rounds each. That's 98 total rounds.
Saban is averaging 1.13 selections per round.
Here's the breakdown by position:
- Linebackers 18
- Defensive tackles 14
- Running backs 13
- Wide receivers 11
- Cornerbacks 11
- Safeties 11
- Tackles 10
- Guards 7
- Quarterbacks 5
- Centers 5
- Defensive ends 5
- Tight ends 4
- Long-snapper 1
- Punter 1
The position group that has seen the most selections shouldn't be a surprise, especially since Alabama often lines up four there in the base defense, linebacker. There have been 18, led by Rolando McClain at No. 8 overall in 2010.
That also fits in with Alabama history. Since 1967, when the positions became more defined, the Crimson Tide has had 49 linebackers drafted through 2022. The earliest selected was Cornelius Bennett at No. 2 in 1987.
But then the totals go in slightly different directions.
The next three most-drafted position groups during the Saban era are defensive tackles (14), followed by running backs (13) and a three-way tie between wide receivers, cornerbacks and safeties (11). The top picks, respectively, were Quinnen Williams/Marcell Dareus third overall, Trent Richardson third and Amari Cooper fourth (among the three tied position groups).
Now check out how many first-round selections Saban's had at Alabama by position:
- Wide receivers 8
- Tackle 7
- Cornerbacks 5
- Linebackers 5
- Running back 4
- Defensive tackles 3
- Safeties 3
- Quarterback 2
- Defensive end 1
- Center 1
- Guard 1
- Tight end 1
Eight of the 11 wide receivers Alabama has had drafted during the Saban era went in the first round, or 72.7 percent.
Seven of the 10 offensive tackles drafted went in the first round, or 70.0 percent.
Overall, a staggering 36.9 percent of Saban's Crimson Tide players who have been drafted were selected in the first round.