Saban a 'father figure' to Arenas

Alabama cornerback Javier Arenas (WBRC photo)
Alabama cornerback Javier Arenas (WBRC photo)

By Dennis Washington

PASADENA, CA (WBRC) - Down to earth. Fun. Like a teammate. A description of Alabama head coach Nick Saban?

Yes, says Alabama cornerback Javier Arenas.

"He's down to earth, fun. He feels more like a teammate than a coach, especially when we're out on the field."

Arenas talked about his head coach Tuesday morning during a team news conference with the media in Newport Beach, Calif., praising Saban for making his job as a player easier.

"The way he is with you guys, he can get like that with us, and that's when some things aren't going right. That's like a father figure; he can have fun with his kids, but when it's time to discipline the kid, let them know what's right and wrong, you've got to put your foot down. That's the way it is with us."

Arenas said he knows when he's messed up by the tone which Saban yells "Javy."

"I mess up. I know when I mess up, and I try not to look at him. I try just to go straight into the huddle and get ready for the next day, but he still catches me. He not so much yells, he just lets me know what I did wrong and how to do it better next time."

Arenas said he has learned a lot in the past three years since Saban arrived in Tuscaloosa.

"At times it was frustrating, and of course sometimes when you guys asked, it ticked him off even more. But now we have a genius for a linebacker who makes it a lot more easy for all the other players to learn the defense, and it's not as much stress as it was his first year."

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