Nick Saban And Dabo Swinney Tackle Media Day

Saban And Swinney Praise Each Other

The Alabama Crimson Tide and the Clemson Tigers arrived in Tampa on Friday and immediately took part in festivities leading up to the National Championship game. While Nick Saban and Dabo Swinney are no strangers to the spotlight they endured a full hour of media attention on Saturday at the CFP Media Day.

The event was open to the public for the first time and it was also the first time ever being held in an arena. Fans got to listen in on interviews with players and coaches from both teams. But perhaps more impressive was the high praise each coach gave to the opposing team.

The Crimson Tide took the first hour of media attention and Saban got a lot of questions. While touching on various topics the head coach also stated what he thought of Clemson’s quarterback, Deshaun Watson.

“Deshaun Watson is, I’ve said this all week long, probably the most dynamic player in college football, maybe the best player in college football relative to what he does for his team,” Saban said.

Saban was even asked what type of relationship he had with Clemson’s head coach.

“I think good (relationship),” said Saban.

Both coaches have houses on Gasparilla Island and due to their schedules they end up there at the same time sometimes.

“Dabo’s an Alabama guy, coached Alabama, he’s from Alabama so I’ve known him for a long time, but this situation sort of offers us the opportunity to get together sometimes to talk about things and we do that a lot.”

“I did tell him last year because of the respect I have for his team and the players they had coming back that I thought, especially with his quarterback coming back and the continuity that would give them, that they’d have great opportunity to be here again next year.”

But Saban wasn’t the only one handing our praise. While Saban commented on Watson’s success, Swinney was quick to talk about Jonathan Allen and the Crimson Tide defense.

“Big, strong, fast, well coached got heavy hands, he’s got violent hands,” commented Swinney. “These guys disrupt the ball as good as anybody we’ve played, he’s (Allen) just a very knowledgable player, he’s been there.”

“They’re the best, no one can argue that,” said Swinney. “What they’ve done is unbelievable, the run that they’ve had.”

Swinney also touched on Saban’s consistency as a head coach at Alabama.

“Alabama has an unbelievable foundation of tradition and championships and they’ve had the number one recruiting class every year probably since he’s been there, but you’ve still got to develop those guys, still got to coach them.”

Being an Alabama walk-on, Swinney has some first hand experience of what it is like to play and coach for a team like Alabama and called Saban’s career there so far “incredible.”

The head coaches said highly respectable things about each other, but many fans know that come Monday it comes down to who is the better team. The National Championship will kick off at 8:00 p.m.

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Allison Leslie is a University of South Florida graduate with a bachelors degree in Mass Communications. She joined Genesis in 2016. With a passion for sports, Allison has interned with 620 WDAE, Pewter Report, Trifecta Team: St. Petersburg Bowl, Bullscast, and many other publications. Being a native to the Bay Area, she has followed and supported Tampa Bay teams her whole life.