I hope everyone had an outstanding Christmas. My apologies for the lack of updates. It's been stupid busy. The girl and I broke up, so I'm single for the first time in like 5 years. Totally my decision, so before I get any more "I'm so sorry, is there anything I can do to helps" - just know that it was me that did it and not her.
Enough with the personal bullshit. Now lets get into some football.
Andre. Man. What the hell were you thinking? That's just stupid man. I heard your dad talking about "what position makes the most money?" and whatnot at the awards show, but I looked past that. Now, you don't get to be remembered as a part of this resurgence, and that really sucks, because you could've been a key cog for it. Regardless, what's done is done, and you get to sit at home and watch your former teammates in a BCS Bowlgame. Hope it sucks, brah.
To everyone freaking out about Nick Saban's comments about "college football" being "the ideal place" for him and his family - calm down. It's all coach speak man. He's not going anywhere for a little while, so just cool your jets and roll on. Just remember that when he does leave, we'll be in a way better position than we were in before he got here.
Next up, I've heard several people changing their picks to Utah in the past week or so, so it's kinda becoming "the upset special." Don't put stock in it. Our offensive line is still massive compared to their defensive line...and yes, that does matter.
I got 2 tickets on the 50 yard line in the club section for the game, and I'm gonna take some pictures with my phone down there, so I'll be sure and post them up once I return from N'awlins. :-)
Amazing. Less than 2 weeks til we get to take on the Utes.
Life is kinda funny sometimes. I'm sure a lot of you have been through this. The whole thing about thinking you've got everything figured out, and then you get thrown a curveball and have to re-think everything, and you realize everything you're doing is not what you're wanting.
So, I'm at a crossroads. So if I don't every once in a while, just send me an e-mail and tell me good luck. Cause I need it. Haha.
On to football. Basketball is dead to me for now.
Georgia fans are fired up. It's that whole deal about winning not being enough. It gets stagnant. Y'know what Georgia's records have been during Richt's career have been? 8-4, 13-1, 11-3, 10-2, 10-3, 9-4, 11-2, and now 9-3. And people are upset. Do you realize that's an 81-22 record over 8 seasons. 79% winning percentage.
But they're upset because they want that national championship. They wanna be in the ELITE classes. Y'know what's funny? Alabama, before this season, had gone 13-13 in their last two years, and in one season is considered back in the league's elite, as evidence by this quote by Georgia's AD: "We need to understand what Florida is doing. We need to understand that there's a guy named (Nick) Saban over at Alabama that came in here and went undefeated. We need to continue to remind ourselves that this is a highly, highly competitive league and that the bar is being raised. Now what are we going to do to make sure that we not only keep up, but become the elite? Not to be the chaser, but the one that's being chased.
Haha. Makes you smile, right?
Outside the Sidelines has posted his 2008 postseason awards for this year - check em out.
I read where Rueben Randle was at practice on Saturday. Yup. Big time news, my friend. THE #1 recruit in the country. Could you envision Julio on one sideline, and Rueben on the other? And AJ McCarron tossing footballs to them? Yikes. That's scary for defensive coordinators, bro. Haha. Read more about it here.
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Man. 2 weeks and 1 day? That's it? Daaaaaaamn. That's insane. Seems like not too long ago that we were talking about the SEC Championship Game. Wait...I guess that was just last week, right?
Alabama basketball beat Tennessee St last night. Won by 9. Shoulda won by 30. I'm not liking what I'm seeing out of this team. They just look dumb. There's no offense or defensive sets. It's just mayhem and chaos. Dribble down the floor and after a pass somebody tries to play one on one then chunk up a bad shot that sometimes will fall for them...against bad teams.
It's just ridiculous to see this team doing this bad. The rest of the conference is down, so with a competent head coach, you could take control of the division and possibly the conference - i.e. Bruce Pearl. He's not THAT great of a coach, but at least he has a clue.
And, of course, you can go ahead and knock Andy Kennedy off that list because something tells me he's about to get the boot at Ole Miss. He was arrested this morning in Cincinnatti for apparently beating the shit out of a taxi driver and yelling racial slurs at him. Woo-hoo. Read more here, here, and here. Interesting turn of events for one of the supposed "hottest coaching prospects in the country." The driver had to have provoked it...of course, it was 1am. And we know what Huggy used to do at 1am. Hahaha.
Anyway, on to more football stuff.
The Tide had 7 players ranked in the top 25 SEC players, with Andre Smith leading all at #2, behind freakin' Superman.
Pat Dye was on Finebaum yesterday...and he accused Nick Saban and Jimmy Sexton of plotting together and putting out negative stories about Auburn to the press, in an attempt to take down the Auburn football program. As if this year wasn't enough to prove that all Saban had to do is what he's already doing - working harder. Auburn got themselves a cat that'll pay some players under the table, like they used to. And that's that. Read more here.
Y'know...if you'd like to know a little bit about the coach that Auburn just hired, why not read about him from the people that know him best? Like the Iowa State writer for the Cyclone Report.
Yes, that line did read "...Nick Saban will probably floss with Gene Chizik on an annual basis."
Wow. Iowa State...yes, I said Iowa State...was ready to fire this guy after 2 seasons. Nobody saw progress. The team got progressively worse during his tenure. He just lost 10 straight ballgames. Now, don't get me wrong, I mean he did play in the Big 12 with Texas, Oklahoma, and Texas Tech, who are all top 10 teams this year.
...Wait. He didn't play any of those teams this year?
So, wait. What was his schedule?
South Dakota State W 44-17 Kent W 48-28 Iowa L 5-17 UNLV L 31-34 Kansas L 33-35 Baylor L 10-38 Nebraska L 7-35 Texas A&M L 35-49 Oklahoma State L 17-59 Colorado L 24-28 Missouri L 20-52 Kansas State L 30-38
Ok. Seriously? That's what we're looking at?
Now, you should get the sense now that they're going to bring in some people for his coaching staff that know a little bit of what they're doing, because it's obvious this cat doesn't have a clue.
You remember they talked to Rodney Garner from Georgia? I believe that's his name. You know...the guy that was fired from Auburn back when Bowden was there. The guy that was accused of buying players. Yeah. That guy. He was interviewed...one would assume for the head coaching spot. My guess is he'll be brought in as the recruiting coordinator. You wanna compete with Saban in recruiting? The only way Auburn knows how is to pull out the checkbook. Garner would be great at that.
Next up would be Patrick Nix. He'll be brought in as offensive coordinator. He was so great at Georgia Tech, and this year at Miami. We should really be trembling with fear. I guess. Or something like that.
That was absolutely hysterical to me. :-) Good stuff guys.
Brian Johnson stopped a reporter today, who was talking to him about Bama's 12 National Titles, Bear Bryant, and all the history, and reminded the reporter that Utah is playing the 2008 Alabama football team - not Bear Bryant and Joe Namath, etc. I found that pretty funny. Haha.
NT 90 Derrick Shelby | 6-3, 245, Fr., HS NT 99 Aaron Tonga | 6-2, 292, Sr., 1V
DE 56 Greg Newman | 6-4, 260, Sr., 2V DE 43 Lei Talamaivao | 6-2, 290, So., 1V DE 98 Sealver Siliga | 6-3, 325, Fr., HS
Sorry, but those guys look a lil small to me. They've got some big guys that look like they're lower on the depth chart, and the smaller guys appear to be getting the most playing time.
As far as the offense goes, Coach Wittingham has already stated that he and Urban will be on the phone a little bit to discuss gameplanning about the Sugar Bowl. Read more here.
Antoine Caldwell, Rashad Johnson, and John Parker Wilson were all named permanent captains for this season at the Football Banquet yesterday. Very good group, if you ask me. All three were leaders, and displayed the character that we should expect from our members of our football team. I like the selections.
Now, we've got to get ready for Utah, but here's an early look at our tentative 2009 schedule. We've only got 2 non-conference games scheduled, but the conference schedule is manageable, even breaking in a new QB and new offensive linemen.
Sept 5th VaTechAtlanta, GA Sept 12th Fla IntlTuscaloosa, AL Sept 19th TBA Tuscaloosa, AL Sept 26th ArkansasTuscaloosa, AL Oct 3rd @KentuckyLexington, KY Oct 10th @Ole MissOxford, MS Oct 17th South CarolinaTuscaloosa, AL Oct 24th TennesseeTuscaloosa, AL Oct 31st TBA Nov 7th LSUTuscaloosa, AL Nov 14th @Mississippi StStarkville, MS Nov 21st ------OPEN WEEK------ Nov 28th @AuburnAuburn, AL
All you can say is argh. All season long, nobody was able to exploit that weakness. The weakness that was shown time and time again last year. I had almost forgotten about it.
Not Urban Meyer.
Marquis Johnson is our weakness. We're good on the line, we're good at linebacker, we're even pretty decent in the secondary. But that's our weakness.
And they attacked it time and time again.
Tim Tebow, as much as I hate that bastard, is actually one helluva quarterback. He made every single throw, exactly where he needed to, and was the catalyst in this football game. I think Alabama gave them something they hadn't seen all year, which was a punch in the face, and they reeled a lil bit.
The play that completely turned the ballgame in their favor was the 3rd down play where Hightower stopped Demps (I believe that was him) on a play towards the sideline, which would have brought up 4th and 2, but Hightower grabbed his facemask (ever-so-slightly) and got flagged. From there, Florida scored a TD, we went 3 and out, and then they took the ball down the field again and scored to go up 11 with 2 minutes left. That was the game changer. If Hightower doesn't grab the facemask, I think we win that football game. It completely changed momentum.
It's weird, y'know, but I'm used to blaming things on referees or by saying that we gave away a football game, but the bottom line is that Florida is just a more complete football team than we are right now. I'm comfortable with that. The better stuff is coming in time, and that's fine with me. :-)
The DOMINATION IN THE DOME is but 1 day away. And the Tide will be doing the Domination.
If you would like to see why I'm so confident we'll win the line of scrimmage on Saturday, both offensively and defensively, please check out the contrasting depth charts for both teams. Look at Florida's defensive tackles available for Saturday. Look at how small their ends are. Now go ahead and grin and don't feel bad for having that great gut feeling about Saturday.
The Orlando Sentinel did a great job of telling us what the college football world would be like had Tebow chosen Mike Shula and Alabama instead of Urban Meyer's Gators. Read more here.
Now for the fun. C'mon media members. Keep feedin' me these wonderful predictions. Go ahead. Bring it on, cause I'm loving it.
Why Florida will win: Gators are simply the better team - link
Oh my Lord. This is ridiculous. There's so much going on this week that it's actually insane.
I've heard a lot of things, but Memphis radio is stating that Arkansas is looking to try and buy out Bobby Petrino's contract so that they can hire Tommy Tuberville, and Auburn is actually wanting Petrino. I'm not sure why, or how, or whatever, and it just seems stupid to me, but it's definitely interesting. Keep an eye on that. Oh yeah, and Jeff Long, the AD at Arkansas, is apparently pissed off more than a rattlesnake about Auburn making contact with his coach. Welcome to the SEC. This ain't the Big East, boss.
Mississippi State is not attractive to...well, really anybody. Look for them to hire an assistant coach. Dooley is not showing as much interest, and neither are any of the other coaches they've brought up, like Tuberville, Gary Patterson at TCU, or even Tyrone Nix, Ole Miss's defensive coordinator. There's nobody that really wants that State job.
Wanna know why nobody wants the Auburn or Miss St jobs? Nick Saban. Starkville is only 82 miles from Tuscaloosa. Auburn is only about 160 miles or so from Tuscaloosa. Now...where would football players around here rather play? Exactly. You're not going to bring in anybody that will outwork or outrecruit Coach Saban and his staff. And you're especially not going to try and bring in people that used to work for Saban to coach against him (like Dooley, Muschamp, and Jimbo Fisher). I mean, honestly, if the guy that taught all of these guys is at Alabama, why would Auburn and Mississippi State want to hire the guys that learned from him? It doesn't make sense.
Damn cow colleges.
Anyway, I talked to my dad a little bit yesterday. We discussed the impact that Florida's losing 2 DTs last weekend will have on the game. Florida is now down to 3 healthy defensive tackles on their roster. Now, I'm sure that you're looking at this as an advantage to the running game. I see it as an advantage to the passing game.
Now, think with me. Florida will have to bring up 2 linebackers to help stop the run, as long as we're successful with that early. Florida will, like everyone else this year, drop a safety along with a cornerback on Julio Jones, which will leave at least one section of the field open, due to a safety, corner, and 2 linebackers having to dedicate themselves to the run. Look for a huge game from the Alabama tight ends, and the star of the game could end up being Nikita Stover, who looks like he's closer to 210lbs. He's got great hands and runs great curls and crossing routes.
What do you think will be the matchup to look out for?
I'm on board. Fire Mark Gottfried. It's obvious nobody cares about this basketball program anymore. And it's even more obvious that we're going to be absolutely horrible in conference play. Seriously, we were almost beaten, at home, by Alabama A&M last night, a team that's 0-4 now on the season. The game was a 56-54 ballgame with 2 minutes left before Alabama hit some free throws and A&M started missing some shots. Ridiculous. This should've been a blowout, and yet, the team, again, looked like they didn't even care. It's pathetic and it pisses me off. Get this bum out of here NOW.
Ok. Now back to what's really important - football. I am convinced more than ever that Coach Saban knows how to beat Florida. He understands what it takes to show multiple formations against their spread attack, so he gets it.
Another thing you may not have known - Nick Saban has never lost in the Georgia Dome. Very interesting.
Even cooler, Alabama is getting to wear white uniforms on Saturday. When wearing white, Alabama has won by the following scores this year - 34 to 10, 49 to 14, 41 to 30, and 29 to 9. And the Georgia game wasn't even that close. I'll take that.
I don't know how my bosses will expect me to get any work done this week leading up to the biggest SEC Title game ever. Haha. Oh well, guess I could do a little work this week, if nothing else.
I watched the line released yesterday at the Wynn in Las Vegas start out at Florida -7.5, and then, within 3 hours, jump to Florida -10. Ridiculous, if you ask me. I couldn't believe how much Florida was bet. But, y'know what? I have forever and ever gone against the public. If the line was Florida -7.5, they're begging you to take Florida, and still are. If you were a betting person, and you thought something was fishy about that line...well, it is.
I am curious though - when's the last time that a consensus #1 team was a double digit underdog on a neutral field? Or...y'know what...toss out that neutral field thing. When's the last time a #1 team was a double digit underdog ever? Just seems weird to me.
Next up, Florida could be without two backup defensive linemen for the game, along with Percy Harvin being iffy. Depth has been an issue for a lot of teams against Bama's rushing game this year - could this be some foreshadowing?
Don't let the fact that Percy Harvin is hurt fool you - they've got 4 or 5 guys just like him. All of them run about a 4.0 forty and are slicker than motor oil on a hardwood floor. This will be a VERY interesting game because of the contrasting styles. Alabama has speed - but theirs is on defense, while Florida's is mostly on offense. It should be very well-balanced.
Since it's Christmas time, and I know you're lookin for that gift for your favorite Bama fan - I've got an idea. There's a new company out there that does grill toppers, which means you can cook the name of your team directly on the meat on the grill. Now, for a tailgater like myself and the rest of my family, this is the PERFECT Christmas present. If you want to check em out, go to this address - http://www.thegrilltopper.com/TEAMPAGES/ALABAMA.html or just click on the picture ad on the right side of the page.
Oh yeah, and at some point last night, we hit over 1,000,000 page hits. When I started this blog 2 years ago, I had no clue we would reach that many. Hell, I didn't even know that I'd still be writing in it on a regular basis. Probably wouldn't if you guys didn't keep me goin. So for that, I say thank you. Alabama fans kick some serious behind. :-) Roll Tide guys!
¶ 11:49 AM0 commentslinks to this post