Nick Saban praises Kirby Smart: ‘I think he’s done a great job’

Nick Saban-Kirby Smart-Brant Sanderlin
Nick Saban had high praise for Kirby Smart on Wednesday

Alabama and Georgia seem as if they are on a collision course to meet in the SEC title game. And Alabama coach Nick Saban has taken notice of the job the Bulldogs’ Kirby Smart has done in getting his team to this point.

On the SEC coaches teleconference on Wednesday, Saban praised the job Smart has done in his second year with the Georgia program. Smart was the defensive coordinator at Alabama from 2008-15.

“I think he’s done a great job,” Saban said. “I think they have probably one of the best teams in our league.”

The Bulldogs and Crimson Tide are the only two unbeaten SEC teams. Alabama ranks No. 1 in the latest AP Top 25 poll; Georgia is No. 3.

Saban also said he considered hiring Georgia’s current defensive coordinator, Mel Tucker, for the job Smart left. Saban said the timing just didn’t work out. The Crimson Tide ended up choosing Georgia’s former defensive coordinator, Jeremy Pruitt, for the job.

Georgia is on a bye this week as it prepares for Florida (Oct. 28, 3:30 p.m., CBS), while the Crimson Tide host Tennessee.

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