The period from 1995 to 1997 was something of a search for Mel Tucker, but he didn't know quite what he was looking for. He had just earned a degree from the University of Wisconsin, a triumphant finish to a college football career that had been hindered by injuries. But after a short stint in the Canadian Football League, he was sure of one thing: Playing football wasn't the long-term answer. He tried sales. He tried teaching. Finally, he tried Nick Saban.