Bama’s Nick Saban gets help for tornado victims from Chick-fil-A Bowl

Alabama coach Nick Saban shows his follow through Tuesday at the Chick-fil-A Bowl Challenge. (Photo from Chick-fil-A Bowl)

Alabama coach Nick Saban shows his follow through Tuesday at the Chick-fil-A Bowl Challenge. (Photo from Chick-fil-A Bowl)

Greensboro — Nick Saban didn’t finish anywhere near the top of the leaderboard in the Chick-fil-A Bowl Challenge at the Oconee Course at Reynolds Plantation. But the Alabama football coach was fairly distracted.

Saban briefly considered not making his annual appearance in this ACC versus SEC golf event on Lake Oconee due to the post-tornado relief efforts in Tuscaloosa. But the Chick-fil-A folks made it worth his while.

The bowl presented the “Nick’s Kids Foundation” with a check for $70,000, all of which Saban said would go to tornado victims in Alabama.

“We really appreciate all the support we’ve gotten from the Chick-fil-A Bowl and all the people who are doing what they can to help,” Saban said. “The devastation in Tuscaloosa is more than I’ve ever seen in my lifetime. So we’ve all pitched in to help everywhere we can.”

Saban got it twice by the tornado epidemic that swept across the U.S. last week. His home on Lake Burton in North Georgia sustained minor storm damage.

But that was nothing compared to what happened in and around the University of Alabama. Snapper Carson Tinker was seriously injured and Tinker’s girlfriend was killed when a twister hit the apartment they were in.

“A lot of our kids have been affected,” Saban said. “Some of them have been affected just by what they saw, with people injured and displaced. I mean, you see the devastation on TV, but when a guy has lost his home and all his possessions or someone has lost his business or someone has lost loved ones like Carson did, you really feel personally how devastating all this is.

“I told the players, we can’t just be a team on Saturdays; we need to be a team in the worst of times as well.”

Saban’s teamed with former Bama player Chris Mohr to birdie the final two holes of the day and finish 3-under-par in the tournament. But that was far behind Georgia Tech’s Paul Johnson and Jon Barry, who ran away with this year’s title at 11-under-par.

“We made some putts today and that’s always a pretty good plan,” said Johnson, who ran in a 15-foot birdie putt on the final hole. “We didn’t make them all but we made a few and that was fun. We’ve been second here a couple of times and that was kind of frustrating. We managed to get it done this time so it was good to get that monkey off our back.”

With the tournament victory and Johnson’s win in the closes-to-the-pin contest on Monday, Georgia Tech also came away with some loot. Johnson will take back to The Institute a check for $125,000 earmarked for scholarships.

“That’s great,” Johnson said. “I’m sure there are some deserving students that can take advantage of that.”

Lending financial assistance is the point of this five-year-old event, according to Chick-fil-A Bowl president Gary Stokan.

“We raised $632,000 for scholarships and charity this year,” he said. “That’s $2.5 million over five years. That’s our mission, to beat all bowls in charitable donations.”

Not every ACC and SEC football coach competes in this tournament. Georgia coach Mark Richt played with Buck Belue a few years ago but hasn’t recently. Not being much of a golfer, he stopped participating.

This year’s participants included Clemson coach Dabo Swinney, South Carolina’s Steve Spurrier, Virginia Tech’s Frank Beamer, N.C. State’s Tom O’Brien, Tennessee’s Derek Dooley, Maryland’s Randy Edsall, Mississippi’s Houston Nutt, Mississippi State’s Dan Mullen, Wake Forest’s Jim Grobe and Miami’s Al Golden.

FINAL RESULTS (scholarship money):

  • Georgia Tech -11 ($120,000)
  • Tennessee -8 (60,000)
  • Ole Miss, Va. Tech, S. Carolina -7 (40,000)
  • Clemson -6 (25,000)
  • Wake Forest -5 (20,000)
  • Miami -4 (15,000)
  • Alabama, Maryland, Miss. State -3 (10,000)
  • N.C. State (10,000)

By Chip Towers, The UGA Blog

30 comments Add your comment

JAWJeRDAWG

May 3rd, 2011
4:58 pm

Worthy event for worthy causes. .. Go Dawgs!

goldwreck

May 3rd, 2011
5:07 pm

Chick-fil-A is as classy an organization as there is anywhere.
To God be the Glory.

Latest Bama News 5/3/2011 - Page 3

May 3rd, 2011
5:10 pm

SEC Fact Finder

May 3rd, 2011
5:58 pm

The Family of Chic-fil-a are leaders in everything they do. From their stores, their charities, their bowls, their kick off classics. Proud they call Atlanta and Georgia home.

JDawg1785

May 3rd, 2011
7:04 pm

So great to hear Chick-fil-A and Coach Saban are working so hard to help those in need!

I am the only UGA grad in a family of Bama folks and my parents and sister keep me updated on the situation there, which is not pretty. Please consider donating (even the minimum) to the Red Cross and be a part of something good.

There are also many ATL-area organizations collecting material donations. I know volunteers have been busy at Roswell Presbyterian Preschool if anyone wants to check them out.

Does anyone know if UGA is officially doing anything for the tornado victims?

7576DAWG

May 4th, 2011
3:41 am

Surely we have some one on the baseball team that has a good golf game. Didn’t we have a better than scratch handicap guy name Hyde a few years ago at Georgia. I’m sure we could come up with a competitive twosome.

[...] By Chip Towers, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution Nick Saban didn’t finish anywhere near the top of the leaderboard in the Chick-fil-A Bowl Challenge at the Oconee Course at Reynolds Plantation. But the Alabama football coach was fairly distracted. Saban briefly considered not making his annual appearance in this ACC versus SEC golf event on Lake Oconee due to the post-tornado relief efforts in Tuscaloosa. But the Chick-fil-A folks made it worth his while. The bowl presented the “Nick’s Kids Foundation” with a check for $70,000, all of which Saban said would go to tornado victims in Alabama. “We really appreciate all the support we’ve gotten from the Chick-fil-A Bowl and all the people who are doing what they can to help,” Saban said. “The devastation in Tuscaloosa is more than I’ve ever seen in my lifetime. So we’ve all pitched in to help everywhere we can.” Saban got it twice by the tornado epidemic that swept across the U.S. last week. His home on Lake Burton in North Georgia sustained minor storm damage. [More] [...]

JB

May 4th, 2011
7:26 am

Richt too busy studying to play?

JB

May 4th, 2011
7:33 am

By the way….Hollywood types couldn’t get on TV soon enough to help Haiti. Where are they for these poor folks. I hate to say it, but hard times and disaster for mostly white “southern” Americans leaves the front pages pretty quick. These folks will be left mostly to fend for themselves and their Insurance company and a little red cross help. Yes, I ‘ve donated to the red cross and earmarked it for this disaster.

Old Dawg

May 4th, 2011
9:26 am

Chick-fil-A donation to Alabama and academics is a true reflection of the company’s overall commitment to charity. Too bad more companies don’t establish and maintain the same values.

Old Dawg

May 4th, 2011
9:27 am

JB: the story didn’t say Richt is too busy to play. It said he isn’t much of a golfer, so he opted out.

RxDawg

May 4th, 2011
9:38 am

JB, it’s kinda a bad timing thing. The Royal Wedding and Bin Laden’s death really took up a lot of press time. But there was a lot coverage. The president even went to Alabama and declared areas in all of the states as a national disaster. So it’s not like nothing has been done… but I do kind of see where your coming from. These people need help. People in my own town need help.

The flooding that happend in Tenn. a while back was simliar in press coverage.

Whisky Breath

May 4th, 2011
9:44 am

Do you ever get the idea CMR is lazy? There are a lot of crappy golfers, but they show up.
Besides, I bet he can’t stand to play with Buck.

RxDawg

May 4th, 2011
10:04 am

I can’t gaurentee a lot of things, but can gaurentee this. The head coach of an SEC football team is not lazy. It takes a work ethic that the majority of Americans have forgotten.

JB

May 4th, 2011
10:10 am

I wish Hollywood would raise a 100 mil for these folks. I’m sure some help will come from Country Stars, Pro Athletes and conservative talk host etc. hopefully.

tide roll

May 4th, 2011
10:10 am

I suppose some of you fans of other schools will criticize Saban now for helping others less fortunate.

JB

May 4th, 2011
10:17 am

No,we won’t

JB

May 4th, 2011
10:19 am

The ONLY thing I will criticize him for is over promising and under delivering on football scholarships to young men.

DawginLex

May 4th, 2011
10:33 am

The folks affected by this need to be helped. School affiliation shouldn’t matter in these discussions.

[...] By Chip Towers, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution Nick Saban didn’t finish anywhere near the top of the leaderboard in the Chick-fil-A Bowl Challenge at the Oconee Course at Reynolds Plantation. But the Alabama football coach was fairly distracted. Saban briefly considered not making his annual appearance in this ACC versus SEC golf event on Lake Oconee due to the post-tornado relief efforts in Tuscaloosa. But the Chick-fil-A folks made it worth his while. The bowl presented the “Nick’s Kids Foundation” with a check for $70,000, all of which Saban said would go to tornado victims in Alabama. “We really appreciate all the support we’ve gotten from the Chick-fil-A Bowl and all the people who are doing what they can to help,” Saban said. “The devastation in Tuscaloosa is more than I’ve ever seen in my lifetime. So we’ve all pitched in to help everywhere we can.” Saban got it twice by the tornado epidemic that swept across the U.S. last week. His home on Lake Burton in North Georgia sustained minor storm damage. [See More] [...]

WD

May 4th, 2011
1:36 pm

Love Chick-fil-A……………………..Great Food.

42-34 Dawgs STILL Run This State!

May 4th, 2011
2:19 pm

Congrats to Coach Paul Johnson for FINALLY winning something besides a meaningless ACC game!

UGASlobberknocker

May 4th, 2011
2:26 pm

dawgfan

May 4th, 2011
3:06 pm

Paul Johnson should be very familiar with the pain of finishing 2nd.

JB, your point is well taken and I don’t even really disagree with you, but as bad as the tornados were I’m not sure they match up with the hell that was Haiti after the earthquake.

bamachine

May 4th, 2011
5:53 pm

As for the Hollywood people, one of the most unlikely came and saw the devastation. Charlie Sheen made the trip to Tuscaloosa and he is spearheading a collection for the town. Hopefully this ends up helping him straighten his life out, as he helps those also in need.

Be4Bama

May 4th, 2011
8:21 pm

Devastation throughout our state only pales in comparison to Katrina and 9/11. You will never know how much your support means to the people of Alabama. We could also use volunteers in many of the smaller communities of North Alabama. Go to one of the local TVstations for coverage of the other affected areas. You will also find links for donations and oppurtunities to volunteer.
God Bless you and let’s show the rest of college football how we come together in the time of need.
Go SEC

Jake

May 4th, 2011
8:36 pm

I root for UGA and was convinced Saban was one of those self-seeing guy who was a great coach but a sorry excuse for a man. After reading about his reaction to what happened in Tuscaloosa, I’m happy to admit I was wrong. Good for him.

trupert

May 5th, 2011
5:51 am

First saban slips down to fourth in the SEC West and now he gets his but kicked by Paul Johnson, and finishes next to last, he better get it together or he’ll be on the hot seat as fast as Richt will get off of it.

You wanna know my favorite game..... THE BLACKOUT (CF)

May 7th, 2011
11:09 pm

Still stings don’t it fleabags ?????????????

Dale

May 9th, 2011
11:29 pm

I went over to Eclectic, AL the Friday after the storm to assist with the cleanup and was very humbled by the experience (several fatalities and a trailer park and several homes wiped off the map). During the time I was there, I met many people from the community and far outside of the community, all doing what the could to help the residents pick up the pieces of their lives. I saw people young and old, rich and poor, neighbors and strangers doing their best to clean the place up, getting it ready for FEMA to arrive a few days later with much needed supplies and trailers. I saw people who could barely afford to feed their families donating everything they could as far as water and clothes and baby supplies. These people did not expect a thank you and were surprised when when the battered and bruised residents came forward and shook their hands and thanked them. Some of the injured residents came straight from the hospital on crutches and wheelchairs to thank the volunteers.

I am from the Auburn, AL area originally and now live in West GA. I graduated from Auburn but am a lifelong Bama fan. When it comes to helping people out, school allegiance should never come into question. I am honored to be an Auburn graduate and very happy with the outpouring of support from Auburn fans for those affected by the storms in Tuscaloosa. I am glad to see the Chick Fil A Bowl step up and help out the people of Tuscaloosa.

With all of that being said, I would ask that, like Be4Bama stated, people head to the smaller communities to pitch in, as these are the areas that did not gain the spotlight of the AJC or CNN or any of the larger networks. I wish I had seen Obama head to the smaller communities, not just the spotlighted ones that would help his next campaign. The same goes with Charlie Sheen as he promotes his train wreck of a career, even though I am happy he was of some good use. I do not know if he made any big time donation, but hope that he did.

In closing, we all share this planet, and it is up to us to help each other when times are tough. If everyone does just that, we can all get through our time on this planet with a bit more happiness.

Roll Tide, War Eagle, Go Dawgs, …etc