Nick Saban on Alabama’s undefeated season: ‘This is a great team’

Buckeyes finish 7-1 in season shortened by pandemic

A college football season like no other finished like many others: with Alabama claiming the national championship.

Alabama’s 52-24 victory over the Ohio State Buckeyes on Monday in Miami, Fla., ended a season almost derailed by the coronavirus pandemic and dominated by COVID-19 testing, quarantined players and coaches and postponed games. Only one things remained consistent from September through January: Alabama’s dominance.

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That was on display again Monday as the Crimson Tide claimed their third national championship of the College Football Playoff era. Alabama finished 13-0. It won all but one game by double digits and routed Notre Dame and Ohio State in the playoffs by a combined 45 points.

“I think ‘perseverance’ probably is the one word that describes this team the best in terms of what they’ve had to overcome all season long, to come undefeated and win a championship,” Alabama coach Nick Saban said. “I’m so proud of these guys. This was a team that was always together. Everybody bought into all the principles and values of the organization and the program. They just did a great job. They played together. They supported each other. This is a great team.”

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This was Saban’s seventh national championship. He won one title at LSU and has won six at Alabama since 2009.

“I’m just happy that we won tonight,” Saban said, “and I really haven’t thought about (seven championships) because you’re always looking forward, and I just love this team so much and what they’ve been able to do. I can’t even put it into words.”

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