What Tony Robbins Told Coach Nick Saban (and me)

Phillip Stutts
4 min readAug 23, 2022


Photo courtesy of the University of Alabama

“After taking the lead to win the national championship, you were beaten in the last minutes of the game. How did that happen? What was your mindset when the game shifted and you began to lose?”

Recently, Tony Robbins traveled to Tuscaloosa, AL, to ask some pointed questions and impart some leadership wisdom to Coach Nick Saban and the preseason #1-ranked University of Alabama football program.

So how did Tony Robbins find his way to Tuscaloosa?

If you don’t know how these things come together, it’s important to know that Coach Nick Saban, arguably the greatest college football coach of all time, always brings in HUGE business and sports legends to speak to his team about leadership during pre-season camp. Past speakers include Kobe Bryant, Alex Rodriquez, Stephen A. Smith, Mike Tyson, Michael Phelps, and Gary Vaynerchuk.

And there’s no bigger name in leadership and strategy than Tony Robbins. The man has worked with the NBA champion Golden State Warriors, the Stanley Cup champion Washington Capitols, Tom Brady, Oprah…, and on and on…

Currently, I’m serving as a senior consultant for the University of Alabama’s external marketing agency, High Tide Traditions, helping athletes get paid to promote their name, image, and likeness.

And as luck would have it, Tony Robbins and I were introduced earlier this year through a mutual friend (investor, best-selling author, and founder of the XPRIZE), Peter Diamandis.

Connecting Tony with Coach Saban and his team felt like a match made in heaven. And what happened next might just help spur another football national championship for the University of Alabama…

In his two-hour speech, Tony didn’t shy away from touchy subjects and hard truths, such as how the Alabama football team blew a second-half lead last January and lost the national championship to the University of Georgia.

Tony showed the team how they need to change their leadership mentality to overcome obstacles that result in failure, “Being #1 in the preseason is no guarantee of a national championship. Life has no guarantees, but if you only focus on your fear of failure and not what you want to accomplish, you’ll never reach your goals.”

By the end of Tony’s speech, the room was electrified, and I know Coach Saban, and the team felt Tony’s impact, and it’ll undoubtedly reverberate throughout the season.

I’m curious to see how the Alabama football team progresses this year after the amazing night of learning from Tony.

Stay tuned…

If you are interested in the amazing transformations that happen at a Tony Robbins seminar, let me personally recommend it. I’ve attended five of his programs in person, and all of them fundamentally changed my life for the better.

It started 8 years ago when I had one of those moments that changes one’s life forever.

I was driving from New Orleans to Birmingham and saw that Tim Ferriss had posted a two-part podcast interview with famed business strategist Tony Robbins. Of course, I’d heard of Tony Robbins, who hadn’t. But I’d never studied his work.

That was about to change.

Until I was 40 years old, I was a wannabe entrepreneur — one who told people he ran a business but didn’t know how to read a profit and loss statement or a balance sheet (seriously).

When I first heard Tony on Tim’s podcast, I had an awakening. It felt like Tony was literally just talking to me. It hit me so hard that I pulled into a rest stop, went to TonyRobbins.com, and immediately signed up for his Business Mastery seminar.

Up to that point, I’d spent 17 years in the workforce and never, not once, invested a dime in my entrepreneurial journey or education. Nothing (no wonder I was lost).

Not only did I attend Tony’s “Business Mastery” seminar, but I also attended Tony’s other life improvement programs — Unleash the Power Within and Date with Destiny.

The result?

Since that first business seminar in January 2015, I now own 6 companies and am invested in 11 more. These companies have generated over $1 billion in sales.

It feels like we’re just getting started too…

Tony’s recent speech to Coach Saban and the University of Alabama football team also struck a chord with me. It’s been a while since I’ve been in a room with Tony and received his wisdom. At one point during his talk, I thought to myself, “Oh shit, he’s speaking to me again!”

I realized that I’m still allowing fear in my life — on multiple fronts — to paralyze me and, in some cases, throw me into chaos. If I want to move forward, I can’t focus on my fears, but on what I want to accomplish. I’m excited now for the work ahead.

The point is this: the work to grow and be your best self never ends. It’s a mountain that must be climbed every day with passion and joy. I’m still learning these lessons after being awakened by that Tim Ferriss podcast interview 8 years ago — and I’ll be forever grateful to Tony Robbins for introducing these ideas into my life.



Phillip Stutts

Founder/CEO: Win Big Media | Founder: Go Big Media | Repped by Vayner Speakers & Keppler Speakers | Author: “Fire Them Now: The 7 Lies Digital Marketers Sell…”