Does Nick Saban feel underappreciated after winning five titles in Tuscaloosa? Is that even possible? According to some, the criticism this season brought to Saban’s doorstep may not have been very appreciated.

During a Monday appearance on The Paul Finebaum Show, Alabama beat writer for the Tuscaloosa News Aaron Suttles suggested Saban may not much care for hearing criticism of the Alabama program. While the season ended as they are supposed to in Tuscaloosa, with another national championship in hand, how Alabama got to the title game may be the issue for some Tide fans.

Losing in the Iron Bowl and having to sit out the SEC Championship Game had to have made many Alabama fans nervous. For instance, had Wisconsin won the Big Ten Championship Game, there’s little doubt the Badgers would have made the Playoff and Alabama would have been left at home when the Sugar Bowl Playoff game kicked off.

Could the near miss and the vocal displeasure some displayed have caused Saban some angst? If you think about it, Saban’s celebration after Alabama won the title in overtime against Georgia was an uncharacteristically spirited display by the Crimson Tide coach.

Was that Saban’s way of showing relief following a tough couple of weeks?

Here’s what Suttles said during his appearance on Finebaum’s show:

He also continued with these comments:

“I think there was a lot to deal with, with the injuries and the growing criticism and loud buzz of why aren’t you playing Tua Tagovailoa? Nick Saban does his best to stem that outside noise, but I do think it got to him this year,” Suttles continued.

In the end, it all worked out for Saban and the Tide, but it’s worth mentioning that this same type of “displeasure” from a fan base is what ultimately drove Steve Spurrier to leave Florida and take a job in the NFL. It’s very unlikely Saban leaves Tuscaloosa for another coaching job but should the best coach in college football history decide he’s had enough of coaching for whatever reason, he could likely select any vocation of his choice in and around the game of football.