In this football crazed state of Alabama, there has always been a recurring statement/joke that a head football coach could get elected governor.
It seems former Auburn head football coach Tommy Tuberville is about to test the validity of that.
Tuberville, 62, who recently retired from coaching following a four-year head-coaching tenure at Cincinnati, is considering a run for governor next year.
Tuberville has been touring the state this week meeting with community leaders and media members. He has not committed to running, but its becoming apparent that he will.
Perhaps his biggest obstacle will be winning over Alabama fans, but Tuberville had answer for that question this week on The Opening Drive on WJOX 94.5 FM in Birmingham, saying that Alabama fans should vote for him because “If it wasn’t for me, you wouldn’t have Nick Saban.”
With or without the “Bama” vote, Tuberville winning the governor’s race would not surprise me. He has name recognition and that goes a long way in an election.
I also think he would do well on the campaign trail. I interviewed Tuberville when he used to fish in the Coaches Kickin’ Bass Tournament in Scottsboro, and he’s a down to earth guy that relates well with people. He would have no problem glad handing with potential voters and city, county and state leaders.
Another factor in Tuberville’s favor is that voters are becoming more inclined to vote for candidates that are not lifelong politicians. Donald Trump’s election as President is proof that political experience isn’t required of candidates.
Could Tuberville go from the coaching on the sidelines to living in the governor’s mansion? Could he go from once leading the Auburn football program to leading the state of Alabama?
If he does, how will he ultimately be remembered? As the governor that once coached at Auburn or as the Auburn coach that became governor?
In this football crazed state, I think we already know the answer to that question.