Jan 7, 2019; Santa Clara, CA, USA; Alabama Crimson Tide head coach Nick Saban speaks at a press conference after the 2019 College Football Playoff Championship game against the Clemson Tigers at Levi's Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

In the climatic scene of the 2002 film 8 Mile (spoiler alert), Eminem’s character, B-Rabbit, performs a freestyle dissing himself, beating his rap battle opponent to the punch and leaving him devoid of any material to rebuttal with.

It’s unclear whether Nick Saban has ever seen the movie. But during his coach’s show following Alabama’s 34-24 loss to Texas, the seven-time national champion head coach deployed a similar strategy.

As is tradition, Saban’s “Hey Coach” show began with a call from one of the Crimson Tide’s most famous fans, “Peewee from Grand Bay.” But before Peewee could even get a word in, Saban proceeded on a rant of his own, listing all of the conceivable grievances that any Alabama fan could have following a rare double-digit loss.

“Well Peewee, I’ve been wanting to talk to you all week, man,” Saban said. “We’ve gotta firm up the pocket, we’re setting too soft, we’re getting pushed back in the middle. Everybody thinks we can’t hold up against the blitz, but they’re sacking us with a four-man rush, one three-man rush — only one sack came off of a pressure. So I wanted to ask you, what the hell’s going on?”

If Saban’s intent was to mimic the 8 Mile strategy, it worked.

“I believe you covered it all right there coach,” Peewee replied.

Saban’s rapport with Peewee has been well-documented for nearly a decade. In 2014, USA Today’s Laken Litman (now with Fox Sports) profiled the diehard Crimson Tide fan, who Saban considers to be a bit of a good-luck charm. (And Saban also is not a fan of media praise for his team, so it makes sense that he’d offer some criticisms of them here.)

But beyond its viral appeal, the humorous rant shows the type of leeway a college head coach is afforded by a fanbase when he’s done a lot of winning. It’s hard to imagine, say, Jimbo Fisher, providing a similar moment after a high-profile loss and having it well received by Texas A&M fans, as he—or frankly, anybody else—hasn’t built the same goodwill that Saban has in Tuscaloosa.

[Crimson Tide Sports Network]

About Ben Axelrod

Ben Axelrod is a veteran of the sports media landscape, having most recently worked for NBC's Cleveland affiliate, WKYC. Prior to his time in Cleveland, he covered Ohio State football and the Big Ten for outlets including Cox Media Group, Bleacher Report, Scout and Rivals.