Elections

Nick Saban chooses football over Election Day fodder

Alabama head coach Nick Saban works the sideline in the second half of an NCAA college football game against LSU in Baton Rouge, La., Saturday, Nov. 5, 2016. Alabama won 10-0.
Alabama head coach Nick Saban works the sideline in the second half of an NCAA college football game against LSU in Baton Rouge, La., Saturday, Nov. 5, 2016. Alabama won 10-0. AP

As No. 1 Alabama prepares for Saturday’s SEC matchup with Mississippi State in Tuscaloosa, there’s probably a lot of things on coach Nick Saban’s mind. But politics, evidently, is not one of them.

During his Wednesday press conference, Saban said he didn’t pay much attention to Nov. 8.

"To be honest with you, I didn't even know (Tuesday) was Election Day. It was so important to me that I didn't even know it was happening," Saban told reporters. "We're focused on other things here."

Saban, whose team is coming off a 10-0 victory over LSU in Baton Rouge, said it’s not in his best interest as a coach to discuss politics.

"I don't really make political comments,” he said. “So if I say I like one person that means that everybody that voted for the other person doesn't like me. Why would I do that? I want what's best for our country. I'm not sure I can figure that out."

He did, however, say he wants what’s best for the nation.

“I hope whoever our leader is will certainly to do all he can do to make our country safe and improve the quality of life for a lot of the people that we have in our country,” Saban said.

Although Saban has distanced himself and the program from politics, the Crimson Tide have had strong ties to the presidential election since the mid-1980s.

Since 1984, the winner of the Alabama-LSU game has been tied to the winner of the presidential election. In years that Alabama has won the contest, the Democratic candidate has been elected.

That trend was broken Tuesday when Republican Donald Trump was elected to serve in the nation’s highest office.

The MSU-Alabama game kicks off Saturday at 11 a.m. on ESPN.

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