Alabama Football News

Nick Saban encourages financial literacy for Alabama football players

Nick Saban during the first scrimmage
Photo by Kent Gidley of Alabama Athletics

We are getting closer to compensating student-athletes for name-image-and-likeness.

Before it happens, Nick Saban has always been one to educate his players at the University of Alabama on finance. He is concerned about the totality of an individual, and he brings in some of the best people to speak to the players on the importance of life outside of football. Today, he had Didier Occident speak to this year’s team about financial literacy. Occident is the CEO and Founder of Secure The Bag Financial Literacy Program. He also teaches NFL players the value of being smart with money.

In answering the question of “How to secure the bag?” Occident said athletes have to first pay themselves.

“Financial success starts with a budget,” he said. “If we can learn to be disciplined with our saving habits, we can be guilt-free spenders. The more you can repeat a habit, the more you can hear something, the more reps you get, the better you get. More reps, more strength. Life comes down to the choices you make. We are not wired to think about what is my future self going to want, but what determines your success is what you do after you get the money. Your mindset and your behavior will determine your success financially.”

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Players such as DeMarcco Hellams and Jaylen Moody learned a lot from the session. Since 2009, Saban has placed 106 athletes in the NFL Draft — including 39 first-round picks. His message of life after football is an important one, and he wants his players to be prepared financially.

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Stephen M. Smith is the managing editor and senior writer for Touchdown Alabama Magazine.  You can “like” him on Facebook or “follow” him on Twitter, via @CoachingMSmith.

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