I have felt for a long time that a HC and his staff must have a philosophy towards the game. They must put a stake in the ground and say, "We are going to do these things on offense and these things on defense. We will design our games in such a way to contribute to the success of those things and when we are successful in doing those things, we'll win." I think it is important that you stick to your given phiosophy in order to build consistency. It's important to remain loyal to your constructed philosophy even when things are bad. Otherwise, you cannot build your strengths to the point of becoming a consistently winning program. Now, having said all that, I think a coach and a team that has already reached a certain level of success (e.g. LSU or Texas) can gain some short term, immediate success in big games by going against their established philosophy. If your offensive philosophy, for example, is to control the ball by running first, it might behoove you to air it out against an opponent that outmatches you in the trenches. Of course, this means that you must have the personnel to perform the change of direction. Anyway, I bring all this up b/c I think that many coaches have reached very successful levels by sticking to their guns, but can't get over the top b/c they are too loyal to their guns. In the games where they play an evenly matched or better team, the thing that brought them success brings them losses. Their loyalty to their established pattern of playing the game is their demise. What is Saban like? What seems to be his offensive and defensive philosphy towards the game, and has he shown an ability to change his stripes? (No pun intended my tiger friends) Hook 'Em Safe traveling to Dallas.