Saban Charity to Build 14 Homes

VESTAVIA HILLS | The Nick's Kids Fund delivered a No. 14 of its own Thursday at the Old Overton golf course.

The charity organization of University of Alabama coach Nick and Terry Saban, Nick's Kids, held its annual golf tourney, where funding was announced for a new home construction in Alberta City for a tornado victim. Partnered with Habitat for Humanity of Tuscaloosa, Nick's Kids originally funded 13 new homes to match the Crimson Tide's number of football national championships, but added a 14th home to the goal after UA won its 14th national title in January. Nick's Kids has donated $720,650 to the 14 for 14 Project.

"I think we gave 1.2 million dollars last year to tornado relief," Saban said. "Half of that money was actually contributed by the people who are in this group here today, who are sort of our core group of Nick's Kids supporters, as well as our efforts and many other people."

Habitat for Humanity of Tuscaloosa executive director Bob Johnson indicated 10 of 14 homes are complete with final construction stages under way on two more, and early construction under way on the last two.

"We will dedicate to move the family in in August," Johnson said. "I know the family, and it's a family that lived right in the middle of Alberta City. They lost everything in the tornado. They're a hard-working family. It will be a new start for them. But it's not just this family. There are 13 other families that have had their lives changed by the partnership the Sabans have had with Habitat."

Saban said Nick's Kids was founded in honor of his father and his support of local children, adding that wife Terry handles much of the Nick's Kids workload.

"My mother always said if you're ever in position to do anything to help young people, that's what your dad wanted to do," Saban said.

Facility upgrades
The UA football facility has begun a series of face-lifts, including a reconfiguration of the outdoor practice fields and a new weightroom.

"We had a field we never really ever used," Saban said. "We're going to build a new weight room, and it's going to be between the Mal Moore facility and the indoor facility. ... Then we're going to remodel the downstairs in phases. That's kind of the facility plan we have that we're working toward over the next couple of years."

"I'm glad it's a three-game series and not a seven-game series, because those last two seventh innings, I think I was more nervous than I am in our games. ... The cardiac kids or something." - Saban on the UA softball team's national championship series win over Oklahoma.

The UA football team is in the midst of an eight-week summer conditioning program that is a routine part of the team calendar. "We're not allowed as coaches to work with the players right now. The strength and conditioning coaches work with them on conditioning, trying to get them prepared for the season. So far that's gone very well," Saban said. ... Saban said all but one incoming freshman has enrolled in UA summer school, noting he hopes the one missing will arrive "shortly."