Nick Saban and the Alabama Crimson Tide football team are preparing for a SEC Championship bout with the Georgia Bulldogs on Saturday, but the Alabama players aren’t the only Tuscaloosa, Ala., residents preparing for a fight this weekend.
Heavyweight boxer Deontay Wilder, who grew up in Tuscaloosa as a fan of the Crimson Tide, is scheduled to defend his WBC heavyweight title against Tyson Fury. Wilder (40-0) and Fury (27-0) will put their undefeated records on the line, just like Alabama (12-0), at the Staples Center in Los Angeles.
Saban sent a video message, which can be seen below, to Wilder on Thursday. The boxer also spoke to the Alabama football team earlier this season, and that interaction can be seen below as well.
“Everyone associated with the University of Alabama football program wants to wish heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder all the best in his title defense against Tyson Fury on December 1,” Saban said. “I know it’s been a long time coming to have a prominent American heavyweight champion and we’re so proud of the way you represent Tuscaloosa.”
— Sporting News (@sportingnews) November 29, 2018
— Alabama Football (@AlabamaFTBL) November 27, 2018
Alabama and Georgia are scheduled to kick off from Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta at 3 p.m. CT. The undercard for the bout between Wilder and Fury isn’t scheduled to begin until 8 CT, so that may give Saban enough time to actually watch the main event live. The same goes for Wilder with checking out the SEC Championship Game, although his pre-fight responsibilities may interfere.
Either way, both men will be supporting each other on Saturday.