The Alabama football team made its first appearance in New Orleans after arriving for Monday's Sugar Bowl and Nick Saban spoke to the media shortly after touching down.

The head coach first spoke about the chance to return to the playoff and what his team needs to do to have success in the postseason.

"I think when you get an opportunity like this, which is a really special opportunity to play against a great team like Clemson or any team that's in the playoffs at this point, players obviously have to expect it to be a very difficult game," Saban said. "Most of these games are like dogfights so you got to be able to overcome adversity and everybody's got to take ownership to do their job."

Saban explained that the team has a clear goal heading into the playoff, and that's getting a second chance to finish the season like they had hoped to a year agl.

"This team has an opportunity to finish this season a little better than we what we did the last. I'm proud of the way they went through the season. I think we lost our identity a little bit in the last game, maybe forgot who we were and what we needed to do to be able to succeed in our last game. We feel fortunate to have the opportunity to sorta rectify that in the playoff."

Here are the other topics Saban touched on during the 10-minute appearance:

  • He talked about not wasting a failing like the team had last year to finish the season.
  • The team's identity, which he thought they lost a bit in the final game of the season. and how they have a chance to get it back.
  • How the experience will help the team handle a busy week of practices and bowl appearances.
  • An injury update on Dylan Moses and Hootie Jones, both of which won't play against Clemson. He also talked about the other linebackers that will play after dealing with injuries for most of the season.
  • Burton Burns' impact as the running backs coach at Alabama and why Saban thinks he's one of the best in the business.
  • Whether he's spoken to New Orleans running back Mark Ingram, and why he's proud of his former players.

All of the Sugar Bowl coverage this week on Tide 102.9 is presented by Pearl River Resort & Casino, the Supe Store and the UA Alumni Association. 

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