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VIDEO: Nick Saban, The Unhappiest Camper

Nick Saban's Alabama Crimson Tide are ranked No. 1 in the country after pummeling Michigan in the weekend's highest-rated television event. His team is going to beat Western Kentucky in Week 2 by as many points as it would like. Saban would strongly prefer that his players not operate under this mindset, and Wednesday after practice let the assembled media know about it.

Video, via

Constructing a criticism-criticism-criticism-praise sandwich has become a standard Saban move in his dealings with the media whenever he spots something he'd like done differently. We'll know it works if a couple Alabama papers go ahead and pick the Hilltoppers to score the upset this Saturday.

The opening statement alone:

Ya know, there's a tremendous balance between humility and confidence.

This game is a struggle. It's a struggle every day. You gotta embrace it every day. You gotta go out and earn it every day, to be as good as you can be. You gotta have a tremendous amount of character, confidence, mental and physical toughness, you gotta be driven to be the best, and you gotta be able to handle success.

I hate to be negative with anybody, but when you people start writing stuff about people that we're playing that doesn't give them the proper respect, that's not fair. It's not fair to their players, who work hard and earn it, it's not fair to our players who need to respect them, and to make presumptions like you all make, really upsets me. It's so unfair. You don't need to write about that. There's so many good things that you can write about happening around here that people would be interested in. I'd love to see some of you do a little bit of research and figure it out. It would really do my heart good.

I just had to get that off my chest, because all those things are important, man. What makes the really good teams good, what makes the really good teams good, they have those intangible things that make 'em good. It's work every day around here to try and keep our guys on track to have a little bit of humility and confidence. We win one game and I can't believe what gets written. We did play two teams at neutral-site games and played horrible in the next week because a lot of the same kind of stuff happened. I'm just giving you my opinion. I respect what y'all do. I understand you're not here to promote our program or anything like that. But I would appreciate that if you'd just get everybody involved in the game. We play the games for a reason. To make all these predictions of what's gonna happen takes away from the game. I think.

Everybody talks about who's gonna win the national championship. Why do we play the games? We got a lotta great games coming up. Why do we play them?

Does anybody wanna ask me a question? I'm trying to be nice about it.

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