Julio Jones was there for the beginning of Alabama's latest dynasty.
Even after the Crimson Tide went 7-6 in Saban's first season, including a home loss to Louisiana-Monroe, Jones was among a stellar class of recruits that signed in 2008.
"We were going to work and get this thing turned around," said Jones, now a star receiver for the Atlanta Falcons. "They've been off and running since then."
Jones was a first-round pick of the Falcons in 2011.
After Alabama (13-0) plays Saturday in the Peach Bowl semifinal against Washington, Jones and the Falcons will close out the NFL regular season Sunday at the Georgia Dome against the New Orleans Saints.
Atlanta has already clinched the NFC South title and a trip to the playoffs.
This article was written by Paul Newberry from The Associated Press and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.