The two greatest football coaches arguably of all time have collaborated for a documentary set to air on HBO in December.
Nick Saban, college football’s championship architect, and Bill Belichick, pro football’s best leader, have collaborated on a documentary called ‘Belichick & Saban: The Art of Coaching.’
The coaching duo has been friends for over four decades, sharing in a working relationship during their tenures. Saban served as Belichick’s defensive coordinator for the Cleveland Browns from 1991-94. Together, they led the Browns to a playoff berth in 1994 and a victory over the New England Patriots — Cleveland’s last postseason win.
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The documentary is set to air on HBO on December 10 as part of a collaboration with NFL Films. The trailer was released on Monday with a couple of interesting tidbits. See for yourself.
One can only imagine how the full 90-minute documentary will turn out. Saban and Belichick granted total access to their annual coaching retreat during the offseason as the two discussed coaching philosophies and delved into their blueprint for building organizational success.
Saban’s Time in College
Belichick and Saban met in 1982 when Saban coached at Navy under Bill’s father Steve. Saban has since become one of college football’s all-time best coaches, right up in the conversation with Bear Bryant.
Saban has a 233-63-1 record as a head coach in college. He began with a single season at Toledo in 1990, leading the Rockets to a 9-2 record and a MAC Championship. He spent the next few years in the NFL before returning to college football and Michigan State. With the Spartans, he maintained his winning ways but missed a bowl in his second-to-last year.
In 2000, he made the move to LSU where his dominant coaching began. Saban won the 2004 National Championship by defeating Oklahoma in the Sugar Bowl.
After another brief stint in the NFL, he arrived at Alabama and has put on an incredible display of coaching and recruiting that has forced college football’s FBS title to go through Alabama just about every year.
Bill Belichick was named head coach of the New York Jets in 2000. Less than a week later, he was the head coach for the Patriots, a position he has held for two decades.
It wasn’t the easiest start to life in New England for Belichick, going a measly 5-11 in his first season and dropping the first two games of 2001. Along with starting quarterback Drew Bledsoe being out, Belichick was on the hot seat.
Even with a Super Bowl win, the Patriots went 9-7 in 2002, missing the playoffs. Belichick was struggling to keep his team above .500 after a month in 2003 until something clicked into place.
At the end of September 2003, Belichick’s record with New England 30-25 including the postseason. But since then, he has won five more Super Bowls and has now led the Patriots to 16 straight 10-plus win seasons and missed the playoffs just once as an 11-5 team in 2008.