Michael Phelps Participates in Camp Speaker Series for Alabama Football Team

A pair of GOATs collided on Saturday in Tuscaloosa, Alabama when University of Alabama head football coach Nick Saban invited 23-time Olympic gold medal winning swimmer Michael Phelps to speak with his team.

While no video of the conversation has come out yet, several pictures and quotes have been released – including one indicating that Phelps might make an appearance on the “Bama Cuts” YouTube series. The series, launched last year, features head coach Nick Saban and Alabama football players in casual conversation in a barbershop inside of the football facility.

While many of the guests are former Alabama football players, athletes from other sports have appeared on the show before, including baseball player Alex Rodriguez.

Saban said that the theme of the fall’s camp speakers series is ‘choices.’

“It’s all about choices. Michael Phelps talked last night and said your actions speak louder than words,” Saban said in a press conference. “The message is clear. We try to help our players to be successful in life…his message is of high impact for young people on how to face life, not just sports.”

In his swimming career, Phelps achieved as much as any athlete ever has in their sport, winning 28 Olympic medals, 23 of which were gold, and set 39 swimming World Records. But throughout his career, Phelps faced a lot of challenges. That included the infamous ‘bong’ photo from 2009 at a time when marijuana use wasn’t as widely accepted in the United States as it is now, and two DUI arrests.

Later in his career and into retirement, though, Phelps has become a vocal proponent for mental health, especially among athletes.

As for Saban’s credentials, he is arguably the greatest college football coach in history. He has a career 178-25 record at the University of Alabama, and has won seven national titles at the highest level of college football as a head coach: more than anyone in history. He also became the first coach to win a national championship at two different FBS (Division 1-A) schools since the AP Poll debuted in 1936. Six of Saban’s national titles came at Alabama, with another in 2003 coming at LSU.

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Jjsh
1 month ago

I like Jimbo calling Saban out.

Thomas Iannone
1 month ago

I’m not sure Alabama and choices go together.

PowerPlay
1 month ago

I think Phelps needs to talk to their swim team.

coach
Reply to  PowerPlay
1 month ago

Didn’t their women place top 5 at NCAAs this year?

Peaty55Paris
1 month ago

I know this is off topic but has Dressel just disappeared?? No news whatsoever for at least a month. Like the pinnacle of our sport today, we haven’t had any news on him. Smh.

JDM
Reply to  Peaty55Paris
1 month ago

I suspect people know, probably SwimSwam people, and they are staying away from it out of respect, which makes me think it’s a very serious or personal matter (not a physical injury). 🙁 Otherwise it doesn’t make sense the press would lay back like this for this long.

Breezeway
Reply to  JDM
1 month ago

Any yet Simone Manuel, Simone Biles, Naomi Osaka, etc were not given the same space

Peaty55Paris
Reply to  Breezeway
1 month ago

That’s facts, and yea if it is mental health a statement could just be released saying it is mental health related. Instead, it has me wondering about PED’s. I need this theory to be proven wrong. If it is a personal matter hopefully Dressel works it out.

Thomas Iannone
Reply to  Breezeway
1 month ago

Excellent point.

Coleman Hodges
Reply to  JDM
1 month ago

I’m curious about your perspective on this. Multiple members of SwimSwam have stated numerous times we don’t know what’s going on with Caeleb or why he pulled out of World Champs other than what was released by USA Swimming.

While it is our responsibility to cover swimming news, I think it’s also prudent to respect a swimmer’s personal privacy. This isn’t life or death, this isn’t a legal issue; Caeleb didn’t do anything wrong.

We’ve exhausted every resource on our end in trying to get a statement from a legitimate source from someone in his camp, and everyone has made it clear that he will talk when he’s ready to. So what’s the matter with giving him the space he’s… Read more »

Khachaturian
Reply to  Coleman Hodges
1 month ago

Thank you for not being annoying paparazzi like I see in the movies. I don’t think people understand that when a celeb says “no” for the moment. It means no, any amount of pressuring isn’t going to change their mind on the matter.

Last edited 1 month ago by Khachaturian
Joel Lin
Reply to  Coleman Hodges
1 month ago

Quite simply, the post Olympic year is an adventure. Mentally and physically so much gets poured into the Olympic year prep & for that cycle the intensity never dropped for 2 full years because of the delay from 2020 to 2021. Add to that Dressel was hyped to be the star of the show & that is a mountain to carry on one back. And he pulled it off magnificently to accomplish all that he set out to do at the Olympics. If he woulda coulda shoulda taken more of a break is something we just don’t know. What we do know is he’s got a life & a livelihood to manage now. He’ll figure it out & be the… Read more »

JDM
Reply to  Coleman Hodges
1 month ago

I didn’t mean to come across as critical that SwimSwam has been silent on it. Rather, it’s a compliment as to how good I think y’all are at knowing things. I just assumed (perhaps wrongly) with how networked y’all are with swimmers/coaches/admins/medical, something would have leaked by someone by now. And the fact y’all haven’t reported anything, well it just has made me think it’s not a hurt shoulder, but something deeply personal. And I 100% respect that. And I respect also that maybe nothing has leaked (though shocked, cause you know swimmers love to talk shop)… But really, it’s not our business if Caeleb doesn’t want folks to know. I just hope he’s ok. I think how — through… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by JDM
mahaney
1 month ago

judging by the second tweet phelps was shaking hands with himself at the event?

Swimfan
1 month ago

I don’t think “arguably” is the best word to use there. He is the greatest college football coach of all time. Not up for debate.

And the barbershop isn’t near the university, but rather is inside the football facility!

Last edited 1 month ago by Swimfan
TurkMenIStan
Reply to  Swimfan
1 month ago

Alabama fan, Alabama stan.

Bear Bryant? Knute Rockne? Bobby Bowden? There are different ways to define “best ever” than “most national championships,” especially as the modern era has lent itself to less parity across the sport.

Swimfan
Reply to  TurkMenIStan
1 month ago

More first round draft picks than losses, dominant for over a decade and still going strong, and one of the nicest men you’ll ever meet.

Look at Saban’s coaching tree. He’s mentored and employed tons of the best coaches who are tirelessly trying to copy what he has done at Bama.

Those other coaches are great (especially Bear), but they are all in the 2nd tier behind Saban

Cate
Reply to  Swimfan
1 month ago

You did everything but say “roll tide”

Swimfan
Reply to  Cate
1 month ago

Roll Tide

Riccardo
Reply to  TurkMenIStan
1 month ago

Despite what people want you to believe the parity is actually the best that it has ever been in all college sports.

Your average mid major athlete in college is way closer to your higher end power 5 athlete than they have ever been in terms of ability.

Cate
Reply to  Swimfan
1 month ago

Ummm, yeah it is up for debate, actually. You must be very young.

Qqq
Reply to  Cate
1 month ago

Make your case. Name calling is boring.

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder/co-owner of SwimSwam.com. He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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