Daily Dose of Crimson Tide: The Talking Bear

Christopher Walsh

In some places, people like to quote Shakespeare, or even a great movie line,

In Tuscaloosa, perhaps only the Bible is recited more than Paul W. “Bear” Bryant, but the churches do outnumber Bryant-Denny Stadium by a wide margin.

Among his most famous lines:

“I ain’t never been nothin’ but a winner.”

“If you believe in yourself and have dedication and pride, and never quit, you’ll be a winner. The price of victory is high but so are the rewards.”

“What matters is not the size of the dog in the fight, but of the fight in the dog.”

“In a crisis, don’t hide behind anything or anybody. They’re going to find you anyway.”

“I can reach a kid who doesn't have any ability as long as he doesn’t know it.” “Show class, have pride, and display character. If you do, winning takes care of itself.”

“There is a big difference in wanting to and willing to.”

“I don’t hire anybody not brighter than I am. If they’re not smarter than me, I don’t need them.”

“Every time a player goes out there, at least 20 people have some amount of influence on him. His mother has more influence than anyone. I know because I played, and I loved my mama.”

“If anything goes bad, I did it. If anything goes semi-good, we did it. If anything goes real good, you did it. That’s all it takes to get people to win football games.”

“In life, you’ll have your back up against the wall many times. You might as well get used to it.”

“The first time you quit, it’s hard. The second time, it gets easier. The third time, you don’t even have to think about it.”

“I’ll put you through hell, but at the end of it all we’ll be champions.”

“There ought to be a special place in heaven for coaches’ wives.”

“How many people watch you give a final exam?” to a Texas A&M professor who questioned his salary and emphasis on winning. “Well, I have 50,000 watch me give mine, every Saturday.”

“Sure I’d like to beat Notre Dame, don't get me wrong. But nothing matters more than beating that cow college on the other side of the state.”

“What the hell’s the matter with you people down there? Don’t y’all take your football seriously?” after calling Auburn at 6 a.m., but told none of the coaches were in yet.

“I’m just a simple plowhand from Arkansas, but I have learned over the years how to hold a team together. How to lift some men up, how to calm others down, until finally they’ve got one heartbeat, together, a team.”

“Never quit. It is the easiest cop-out in the world. Set a goal and don’t quit until you attain it. When you do attain it, set another goal, and don’t quit until you reach it. Never quit.”

“I don’t know if I’ll ever get tired of football. One time I thought I might. … I was out there on the practice field wondering whether football had passed me by. Then I heard the Million Dollar Band playing over on the practice field. When they started playing ‘Yea, Alabama,’ I got goosebumps all over me. I looked out there and those young rascals in those crimson jerseys, and I just wanted to thank God for giving me the opportunity to coach and contribute in some small way at my alma mater and be a part of the University of Alabama tradition.”

“I left Texas A&M because my school called me. Mama called, and when Mama calls, then you just have to come running.”

Some of this post originated from "100 Things Crimson tide Fans Should Know & Do Before They Die," published by Triumph Books

Comments (3)
No. 1-3

Thanks for posting. Some great quotes and a few I’ve never heard before.

Joey Blackwell
Joey Blackwell


The Bear was definitely full of incredible quotes. Thanks for sharing, Chris.

Christopher Walsh
Christopher Walsh


We're going to be a little over the place today on the site, so wanted to make sure to get a couple of items posted that are fun. Glad you enjoyed this.