Nick Saban explains the 2 questions he asks himself about when to retire

Posted by: Chris Vannini on Thursday December 29, 2016


Nick Saban was available to the media for an hour Thursday at Peach Bowl Media Day, and that inevitably lead to questions about his future. It’s that time of year, after all.

There were disputed reports in October that Saban was close to taking the New York Giants job last year. On Thursday, he was asked about the NFL again and said he’s not looking at it.

“I didn’t talk to one NFL team last year,” he said. “They know who to call. (My agent) Jimmy Sexton has been with me for a long time. He calls me and say, ‘Are you interested?’ I say no, and then that’s it. That’s as far as anything ever went with any team.

“It’s certainly flattering that somebody would have interest, but at this stage in life, from a family standpoint and personal standpoint, we’re excited about the challenges we have in trying to have a successful program at Alabama. We haven’t entertained any other opportunities outside the challenges we have at Alabama.”

At 65 years old, the other question that follows Saban is when he’ll retire. His program is as strong as ever, and with an always-increasing support staff, it spreads some of the work, but no one works harder than Saban. He's shown no signs of slowing down.

On Wednesday night, 77-year-old Bill Snyder won another bowl game. Saban doesn’t know if he’ll even be around that long.

“I have a tremendous amount of respect for Bill Snyder. The guys who love the game and do it for the players and continue to have the energy to want to do it and feel like you can do a good job, he has continued, even at his age,” Saban said. “The thing I always think about, can you continue to do this at the same level or standard that you’ve always tried to hold yourself to? How would you respond if you didn’t feel you were doing that?

“Obviously, he still feels like he can do it, and I have a tremendous amount of respect for that. He’s done an outstanding job. Some other guys have coached for a long time and continue to do it really well. My hat’s off to him. I’m going to do the best I can for as long as I can. That’s all I’m going to say. … I don’t know if I can guarantee I’ll be alive at 77, let alone (coaching).”

Alabama and Washington kick off at 3 p.m. ET on Saturday.

Chris Vannini is in his fifth year with CoachingSearch.com and serves as its managing editor. He has previously written for the Detroit Free Press, The Oakland Press, The State News, MLive.com, 247Sports and SB Nation.  A graduate of Michigan State University, Chris now lives in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.  Be sure to follow @coachingsearch and send emails to chris@coachingsearch.com.