Bear Bryant’s Six Minutes Speech

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“Most of you will live another fifty years or more. I hope it’s seventy, but if it’s fifty that’s still a good life, and what happens today, you’ll have to live with the rest of the way. You can’t get it back if you don’t win. It’s sixty minutes and over. The losers are the ones who say, ‘Oh I wish I could play it again.’ You can’t play it again.

Well, you’re not really going to have to play sixty minutes. None of you. The longest play in a game is six and a half seconds. The shortest play is less than two seconds. That’s barely a wink of the eye. You’ll average five seconds a play. Five seconds of total effort, going all out, giving a hundred percent. You oughta be able to hold your hand in a fire that long.

If you’re lucky enough to play seventy plays, that amounts to about six minutes. Six minutes of your time. Out of fifty years, six minutes doesn’t seem like much. But a loser will regret it the rest of his life.

You’ve worked a long time for this. You’ve been playing since you were in the seventh grade. You go out there in front of all those people and don’t give a hundred percent every play then you’re cheating yourself, and your recruiters, and your parents, and your high school coach, and everybody whoever helped you. This is what you have been working toward…

In any big game there are five or six or seven key plays that will decide the outcome. If you put out for five seconds on every play, you’ll get your share of those key plays. You never know when they’ll come, so you have to go all out every time.

If you’re reckless, and give that extra effort, and every play try a little harder, you’ll see in the films on Monday that it was you who made those five or six plays that win. Play ’em jaw to jaw, and you’ll win in the fourth quarter.”