Given the way the timeline works with the transfer portal, and how fast coaching hires move, it does not seem that Nick Saban quite got the sendoff that he deserved. It has been a whirlwind here on this end for us too, trying to stay abreast of news and rumors and the like. As a result, I know that I (and others) have been struggling with trying to contextualize the loss of Coach Saban, his peaks and valleys, and now his absence in what had been a fixed point in my life.
And then today it happened, with Kristen Saban posting a remarkably moving stitched video of cellphone camera footage she has taken over the years.
That is when I think it truly hit me.
As fans it sometimes seems as though we claim a proprietary right to these coaches as “ours” — as though they owe us their time, their loyalty or even an explanation. And we often lose sight of the fact that these are complex, dynamic human beings, with real lives — and far more meaningful things in them than just College Football.
We lose a coach, sure. But the Saban family — a family that benefited from (and also surely sacrificed for) Nick Saban’s career — now more fully gains the time and attention of a father and husband. It is those things that actually matter: the ones you love, the relationships you make, the friendships you cultivate, the legacy you leave behind for the lives you’ve touched.
As with so many things in life, even this ending milestone is the beginning of another chapter, another fresh page waiting for the quill’s nib in an ongoing novel of life that is being written each and every day.
By all of us.