Merry Christmas And Happy New Year

Merry Christmas! We hope that this is the most wonderful season for everyone and that the New Year brings you great happiness. Presumably, Alabama can provide your joyous start to 2012 with victory in the BCS National Championship Game.

It was no surprise that much was made of Alabama Coach Nick Saban's confession that as a child he had been afraid of Santa Claus. It came to him while sitting in church on Saturday night. "How everyone loves Santa Claus and all the traditions that we enjoy this time of year," he said. "I just remembered how scared to death I was as a little kid of Santa Claus. We used to go to Grandma Conway's on Christmas Even, and Santa Claus always came. There were bunches of kids, all my cousins, and I was scared do death every time Santa Claus came.

"For the life of me I can'f figure out why. I guess I didn't know as much then as I do now.

"Other than that, Christmas has always been good."

It was no surprise that the amusing anecdote of Saban being afraid of Santa Claus got more notice than Saban's real Christmas message.

"It's not what you get," he said. "It's what you give.

"I enjoy Christmas a lot more now when you have the opportunity to give and help other people in the community as well as our family. I'm always looking for my two pairs of socks, but I really do enjoy being able to give and help other folk. I know Terry does as well."

He went on "to wish our fans and all our supporters everywhere to have a happy holiday. I think this is a real fun time of the year, but I think we all need to think of serving others, too, this time of year.

"That's probably really what Christmas is -- more about giving.

"So I hope everyone has a joyous time with their family. We certainly appreciate all those people who have supported us, and hope they have a great holiday season."

Family makes Christmas particularly special. The most perfect part is that this year we have our children and our grandchildren with us. I'll also visit my mother in the assisted living home where she now resides. We'll call my youngest sister, who was born on Christmas.

I hope that your Christmas is as wonderful as I know mine will be, and I want you all to know how much we appreciate your participation at It is in great part your contributions that make this the most respected web site on Alabama athletics.

Oh, and as for that business about young Nick Saban being afraid of Santa Claus? Well, perhaps it takes one St. Nicholas to know another.

Merry Christmas!

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