Here are the 11 times Nick Saban has beaten a former assistant coach

Dr. Saturday

Monday night’s National Championship Game is Nick Saban’s 12th game against a former assistant coach.

It’s the first time Saban has played against Kirby Smart’s Georgia team. While Alabama may be a slight betting favorite, past history says the odds are stacked against the Bulldogs. Saban is 11-0 against his former assistants. Will Smart, his former defensive coordinator with the Tide, break that streak?

Here’s a recap of all 11 of those previous games. As you can see, there are a lot of blowouts.

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Alabama 41, Tennessee 10
Oct. 23, 2010
Tennessee coach: Derek Dooley

Alabama rushed for four rushing touchdowns, including three by the dynamic duo of Trent Richardson and Mark Ingram. Tennessee’s quarterbacks were 17-36 for 170 yards passing and two interceptions.

Alabama 49, Michigan State 7
Jan. 1, 2011
Michigan State coach: Mark Dantonio

The Tide entered the Citrus Bowl at 9-3 after losing the SEC West division title to Auburn. It was fair to say that Alabama was angry. The Tide ran for six touchdowns while Michigan State accounted for a whopping eight yards rushing when Kirk Cousins’ sacks were taken out of the equation.

Alabama 38, Florida 10
Oct. 1, 2011
Florida coach: Will Muschamp

Hey, another game where Alabama’s opponent struggled running the ball. Florida had 30 yards rushing without sacks and Alabama ran for four touchdowns and averaged over five yards a carry. Yes, there’s a definite theme here.

Alabama 37, Tennessee 6
Oct. 22, 2011
Tennessee coach: Dooley

Tennessee’s offense was nonexistent In this game. The Vols threw for 71 yards and rushed for 92 as Alabama smothered them. Bama, meanwhile, got two touchdowns from Richardson and AJ McCarron threw for 284 yards.

Alabama 44, Tennessee 13
Oct. 20, 2012
Tennessee coach: Dooley

This was the final matchup between Saban and Dooley, who was fired from his job at Tennessee at the end of the season. Alabama threw all over Tennessee’s defense, as McCarron was 17-22 for 306 yards and four touchdowns. Amari Cooper had seven catches for 162 yards and two scores .

Alabama 31, Colorado State 6
Sept. 21, 2013
Colorado State coach: Jim McElwain

The game came in McElwain’s first season as Colorado State’s head coach. At least the Rams got a nice payment from Alabama. The Tide struggled running the ball but led 17-0 at halftime thanks to two touchdowns by running back Kenyan Drake. One came as a run, the other was by a blocked punt.

Alabama 42, Florida 21
Sept. 20, 2014
Florida coach: Muschamp

Alabama QB Blake Sims torched Muschamp’s defense for 445 yards and four touchdowns. Three of them went to Cooper, who had 10 catches for 201 yards. It was Muschamp’s final season at Florida, as the Gators fired him and replaced him with another former Saban assistant …

Alabama 29, Florida 15
Dec. 5, 2015
Florida coach: McElwain

… and the trend against Alabama didn’t change with McElwain at the helm. Derrick Henry scored his 23rd rushing touchdown of the season and broke the SEC’s single-season rushing record previously held by Herschel Walker.

Alabama 54, Florida 16
Dec. 3, 2016
Florida coach: McElwain

The SEC Championship Game sequel went a lot worse than the first for Florida. This game also involved a blocked punt returned for a touchdown by a running back. Josh Jacobs took a punt block to the end zone less than four minutes after Minkah Fitzpatrick had a 44-yard pick-six.

Alabama 24, Florida State 7
Sept. 2, 2017
Florida State coach: Jimbo Fisher

Fisher and Saban worked together when they were at LSU. This was supposed to be the marquee game of the 2017 season. It was anything but. Florida State QB Deondre Francois suffered a season-ending knee injury and the Seminoles stumbled to a 7-6 season. Alabama suffered some injuries on defense, but the Tide’s defensive depth helped immensely as FSU averaged less than two yards a rush.

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Nick Bromberg is a writer for Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at or follow him on Twitter!

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