College Football

Texas A&M's Jimbo Fisher takes playful jab at former mentor Nick Saban

May 8

Texas A&M head coach Jimbo Fisher took a playful swing at his former boss and current SEC West rival, Alabama head coach Nick Saban, while visiting the Touchdown Club of Houston on Wednesday. 

When asked by fans what the key was to finally beating the Crimson Tide — other than Saban retiring — the Aggies’ coach replied "We're going to beat his [butt] even when he's there." 

"I respect everything they do and how they do it," Fisher continued. "But we can do it just as good and be just as good or better, and we will. That's what our goal is and what I want. So we're going to get there."

On Thursday at a fundraiser for Team Focus in Mobile, Alabama, reporters asked Saban about Fisher’s comments, and the seven-time national championship winner had the best response. 

"In golf?" Saban asked jokingly. "I'm sure there will come a day. … Is that what he was talking about? Football?" 

It was apparent Saban took the comments all in good fun, and he kept things lighthearted by sending some praise Fisher’s way. 

"They have a really good team, a really good program," Saban said. "They’re getting better and better all the time. There’s a lot of challenges in the SEC and they’re certainly one of the up-and-coming programs. He’s always been a great coach and did a great job when he was with us, and he’s had a great career as a head coach. It’s gonna be a challenge for us, no doubt, when we have to play them."

Fisher worked under Saban as his offensive coordinator at LSU from 2000-2004 before starting his head coaching career at Florida State. Saban has never lost to any of his former assistants, including Fisher, Georgia head coach Kirby Smart, former South Carolina head coach Will Muschamp and former Tennessee head coach Jeremy Pruitt. 

And the Saban-Fisher matchups haven't really been that competitive so far, with Alabama outscoring Texas A&M 144-75 in the three games since Fisher took over the program in 2018.

In 2020, Texas A&M finished 9-1 and ranked No. 4 in the AP poll — the Aggies' highest ranking since 1939. Their only loss? A 52-24 blowout against the Tide, who ended the season 10-0 and claimed their seventh national title in a decade.

Fisher has yet to break the losing streak, but he will get another chance this season when Texas A&M hosts Alabama at Kyle Field in College Station on Oct. 9. Then we'll see who has bragging rights.

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