With a cupcake game for the Crimson Tide upon us this week, and UT-Chattanooga coming to town, now seems like a good time to look back on what happened 16 years ago today on November 17th, 2007 — the final home game of the first season of Nick Saban’s Alabama coaching career.
The Louisiana-Monroe Warhawks, led by head coach Charlie Weatherbie, came into Tuscaloosa and did the unthinkable, taking down Alabama 21-14.
November 17, 2007: In Nick Saban’s first year at Alabama, Louisiana Monroe upsets the Crimson Tide 21-14 in Tuscaloosa. pic.twitter.com/5YPgHczEz0
— This Day In Sports Clips (@TDISportsClips) November 17, 2023
It was Alabama’s third loss in a row, losing the week prior to Mississippi State (another team Saban has not lost to since) and eventual national champion LSU the week before that.
It was a loss so significant that ULM fans and business owners put up a billboard commemorating the victory on I-20 strategically so that Alabama fans on the way to the Independence Bowl in Shreveport would have to drive by it:
Never forget when "Cupcake Week" backfired on Alabama in Nick Saban's 1st year at Alabama (2007) and the Crimson Tide lost to ULM at home. 🤯 pic.twitter.com/hLXeimfYDN
— College Sports Only (@CollegeSportsO) November 17, 2023
The Crimson Tide would also go on to lose the Iron Bowl at Auburn the following week, ending Saban’s first regular season in Crimson at 6-6 with four straight losses and a sixth straight Iron Bowl loss for the Tide.
Many argue that the ULM loss was what ultimately lit the fire under Saban to bring in the ridiculous 2008 recruiting class which would turn the program around. That offseason, Saban brought in players such as Julio Jones, Mark Barron, Dont’a Hightower, Marcell Dareus, and Mark Ingram.
And as they say, the rest is history.
Michael Brauner is a Senior Sports Analyst and Contributing Writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @MBraunerWNSP