I didn’t say it, Forbes magazine did on the cover.
Sweet Nick caught Alabama in a time of need and they gave him money and the power according to Forbes:
In Tuscaloosa, which was desperate to return to national football prominence, Saban, 56, was a savior, welcomed with an open wallet. Saban, with his agent, James E. Sexton II, negotiated an eight-year, $32 million contract that was, at the time, the highest salary ever paid to a college coach. It remains among the highest and is bigger than all but a handful of NFL coaching salaries. His deal includes, among other perks, 25 hours of private use of a university airplane, two cars and a country club membership, extras that make his annual compensation closer to $5 million a year, estimates Smith College economics professor Andrew Zimbalist. He can leave the school at any time without financial penalty, a rarity in big-time college coaching contracts.
What’s more, he was given total control of the football program: recruiting, coaching, business administration and public relations. There are coaches at other universities who have similar salaries, like Charlie Weis at Notre Dame and Pete Carroll at the University of Southern California. But no coach, including those in the professional leagues, can match Saban’s combination of money, control and influence. Saban, now entering his second year as the coach of the Alabama Crimson Tide, is the most powerful coach in sports.