Alabama head coach Nick Saban said he is "pleased with the competitive character" the Crimson Tide showed in Saturday's game against the Texas A&M Aggies.
In a Monday press conference, Saban noted that there were "a lot of good things" from Bama's 49-42 victory over the only team to beat them last year.
Most importantly, he said, was winning an SEC game against a really good team while on the road and getting down 14-0 in the first seven minutes of the game.
Compared to the season opener against Virginia Tech, Saban said the Tide played a lot better offensively, communicated better and controlled the line of scrimmage up front.
Saban said his players also "really controlled the time of possession in the game, which is important especially when playing against an offense like [the Aggies] have."
Defensively, however, Saban said his team "didn't play real well." The coach acknowledged the two big interceptions that were "critical" in the game, but said there were too many missed assignments and a lack of technique among his players.
Saban also compared the the first and last minutes of the game, where the Tide gave away 35 points total, with the middle of the game, in which they slowly and methodically built up a lead and kept it.
"From the first seven minutes of the game, we get behind 14-nothing, don't play very well. Last eight minutes of the game, we give up 21 points. So that's 35 points right there. In the middle, settled down and played halfway decent, but on the ends, didn't do very well," he said.
Moving forward, Saban said the focus needs to be on improving as a team.
"There is no question that I don't feel like we are where we need to be as a team...I think the most important thing about that is going to be players having the discipline to trust and believe in doing the things the way we want them done," Saban said.
"Without that improvement, we're not going to get where we need to go or become the team we want to be," he added.
Looking ahead to this Saturday's game against Colorado State, Saban said coach Jim McElwain has done a "fabulous" job there and noted that he did a fantastic job while coaching at Alabama for four years.
Saban said he's impressed with Colorado State, commenting that they have a good quarterback and several returning starters on both sides of the ball. The thing he may be most excited about, however, is playing the first home game of the season.
"I don't ever remember it being September 21, having been practicing seven or eight weeks and not having played a home game yet. So we're certainly looking forward to being home and in front of our fans," Saban said.
The game against Colorado State kicks off at 6 p.m. Saturday at Bryant-Denny Stadium.
Copyright 2013 WBRC. All rights reserved.