Alabama head coach Nick Saban says the way his team played on Saturday in their win over the Mississippi State Bulldogs is his fault. It's a statement that sounds like bragging to the uninitiated, but Saban was actually taking the blame for what many Alabama fans saw as sluggish and undisciplined play by the Crimson Tide.
"It's always good to win an SEC game, especially on the road. We typically struggle when we come over here and play," said Saban as he began his postgame press conference. "You gotta give Mississippi State's players and coaches a lot of credit. They had a really good plan."
Saban noted the team's trouble with running the ball, the lack of control on the line of scrimmage and the four turnovers as the big issues of the game. He did have praise for the defense in their ability to make stops after the turnovers. Overall, Saban just seemed to feel the effort was not enough from the team.
"That's not the kind of football we need to play if we're going to be the kind of team we're capable of being…" said Saban. "We won the game, but we didn't really beat the other team, if that makes any sense."
Saban says the team's efforts, or lack thereof, come down to him.
"I think that we have to prepare our players better, that's on us, that's on me. So how we kind of played today, that's my responsibility. Because that means we didn't get them prepared to play well. We didn't get them mentally focused so they could play their best," said Saban. "But I also think you gotta give the other team a lot of credit, because they played really well. We have a lot of respect for their coaches and their team and the way they played today."
Next week, Alabama hosts Chattanooga at Bryant Denny Stadium. Kickoff is set for 1 p.m.
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