The success Alabama football has achieved since Nick Saban was hired represents one of the greatest runs in the history of college football.
Since the start of the 2008 season (Saban was hired in 2007), Alabama has won 61 games, which is tied for the most in the Football Bowl Subdivision with Boise State. The Crimson Tide won 12 games in 2008, followed by a perfect 14-0 record in 2009, a 10-3 mark in 2010 and a 12-1 record in 2011. Alabama finished 13-1 in 2012. Oregon is third during that period with 56 victories.
In this age of up-tempo spread offenses, Alabama wins the old-fashioned way with defense. The Crimson Tide has led the SEC in total defense for the last five seasons. In 60 seasons prior, no team has led its respective league in total defense for more than two consecutive years.
Saban’s record is 68-13 with three BCS National Championships since arriving in Tuscaloosa in 2007. He’s among the highest-paid coaches in college football, making more than $5 million a year. He admitted to rejecting two NFL offers after last season offering significantly more money.
Recruiting is one of the primary reasons for the success. The resurgency of Alabama began with the 2008 signing class that included, among others, DTs Terrance Cody and Marcell Dareus, LB D’onta Hightower, WR Julio Jones, and Heisman Trophy-winning RB Mark Ingram. Following the 2008 class, Saban signed the No. 1 class in 2009, the No. 5 class in 2010, and the No. 1 class each of the last three years.
Rivals.com and 247sports.com ranked the 2012-13 Alabama class as the highest-rated in the history of the respective recruiting services.
The football program has made tremendous financial increases under Saban. Alabama’s athletic net profit margin increased 250 percent from 2007 to 2012 (2012 produced revenue of $124.5 million and profit of $19.4 million, according to data from USA Today, up from $67.7 million in revenue and $7.1 million in profit in 2007).
However, even one of the greatest dynasties in the history of college football needs luck and outside help to win BCS National Championships. Luck is one of the biggest factors in the championship equation. Despite the Crimson Tide's dominance in every aspect, the team still needed several huge breaks to win three of the last four titles, illustrating just how difficult a feat they've accomplished.
These are the luckiest moments in the Alabama BCS National Championship run.