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Alabama AD confident Saban will stay

The SportsXchange

Alabama athletic director Mal Moore doesn't think a fourth national championship will push Nick Saban to return to the NFL.

Moore knows from experience the pull of the Crimson Tide isn't easily discounted.

Moore, 72, was an assistant with the St. Louis and Phoenix Cardinals in the NFL from 1986-89. That opportunity came about after Moore, a quarterback at Alabama, spent more than 20 years as an assistant coach at the college level -- primarily with his beloved Crimson Tide.

"For years, when I was with the Cardinals, they'd ask me what it was like," Moore said in an ESPN.com interview. "I'd say it was a little bit different. When I'd go to work, I'd never see anybody. Nobody ever comes to see me. Nobody ever calls. I'd have to think up somebody to call. ... Nobody in St. Louis or Phoenix, nobody would ever come by to see us. You know why? Because nobody gives a damn. Here, brother, they love their university. It's important."

Saban has won three national championships. The Crimson Tide play Notre Dame in the BCS National Championship game on Jan. 7. Saban, 61, left the Miami Dolphins in 2006 to return to college coaching. In six years at Alabama, he has won two crystal footballs -- the iconic trophy awarded to the national title winner.

Saban, the highest-paid coach in college football at more than $5.5 million per season, told 790 The Ticket in Miami on Monday that his heart is in Alabama.

"I really enjoy what I'm doing here right now," Saban said. "I'm getting old now. I don't think we've got too many moves left in us. ... Hopefully I'll be able to stay here for a long, long time."
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