Wake up to hate.
"We need to stay positive in what we try to do and get some trust and belief in each other, in that if everybody does the right things, we're going to have a chance to be successful," Saban said. "We left some plays on the field with dropped balls, missed throws, a couple of misreads, a couple of not so good routes and sometimes we could have had a little better pass protection."
It was a lighthearted moment last weekend when Saban shared one way he playfully teases his players.
Saban was talking about players who quickly return to a game after being helped off the field and said he didn't like it. If you're hurt, Saban said, you're hurt, but if you return after just one play, maybe you weren't really hurt.
Dareus said Saban was on him during last month's win over Arkansas when he originally hurt his ankle, too.
"He said, 'I would have never laid out there on the field,'" Dareus said. "He said, 'I broke my leg in three places, and I still got up and ran off the field.' I said, 'OK.'"
Dareus rolled his eyes, but he was also certain what would be needed if he were faced with that situation.
"If I break my leg in three places, y'all might as well bring a stretcher," Dareus said.
Saban wasn't joking after Saturday's game when he went off on a tirade about mental toughness.
"You're telling the other guy you're beating me up, I'm hurt and I'm going to stay down here," he said. "It's just like a boxer. If you go down, get up. If you've got to come out for a play, come out for a play. But that's just me. I'm old-fashioned. I know they don't make 'em like they used to. ...
"But a guy lays on the ground and eight trainers go out there and everybody thinks he's hurt and he gets up and runs off the field. When I played, my coach, you wouldn't want to meet him on the sideline. So if you stayed down, you'd better really be hurt."
Poole has had some of his best games against stiff competition. Against now top-ranked Oregon, he ran for 162 yards. Against now-No. 6 LSU, he ran for 109. He also ran for 112 yards against Tennessee-Martin. But he was held to 23 yards by both Florida and UAB and 51 yards by Georgia.
"Every player on offense can't have a couple of plays where they don't do it exactly like it's supposed to be done," Tide coach Nick Saban said. "On many occasions, (perception is) it's always the quarterback's fault, but the quarterback position is hard to play when the people around you aren't doing exactly what they're supposed to do. Everybody on our offensive team would say they need to get better, probably including the quarterback.
"We know we can be better. We've got to go practice with the expectations that we can be better."
Having the relatively late bye week for the second straight year, Saban decided to give the team two days off last week to heal up before meeting Ole Miss. He did the same last year leading into the Oct. 3 trip to Kentucky and both times the team wasn’t as sharp as they’d like to be on game day after cancelling the Monday practice.
"I think we should have gone on ahead and do what we’re supposed to do," Dareus said. "Bye week is coming up and we can fight through it until then.
Seven games into the season, UA coach Nick Saban had positive remarks about the Crimson Tide's efforts in that area.
"Kickoff return has been better than in the past from a statistical standpoint in terms of drive start. Kickoff coverage has been better," Saban said. "We haven't had the big negative play in the special teams so far, which is something you've got to continue to work on all the time so that you control vertical field position.
"Our specialists could be a little more consistent, but they all have promise and have done a good job to this point."