In October of 2006, I started this blog to basically get off my chest that there was a change needed at the Capstone. I started by doing my best to back up and defend our coaching staff early in that season, but as the weeks wore on, I helped start a movement, along with other blogs and message boards, etc, to get Coach Shula out of the head seat in Tuscaloosa.
We had been losers long enough. We don't lose 6 games in a season at Alabama. That's not how we're supposed to operate. We especially don't go 24-23 over a 4 year span.
But anyway, the blog started as that, and then turned into the plane tracking headquarters for Alabama's coaching search after the 2006 season. It worked out well because there were about 4 BILLION rumors, and I found a way to post at least half of those, and find a viable explanation for all of them. There was a lot of smoke that offseason, and not very much fire.
The RichRod thing blew up (which we're all happy about), and the Saban thing absolutely set the internet on fire. Blogger's server that hosts Memphis Tider actually crashed the night before Saban was hired, due to the amount of people coming to the page. We had over 100,000 unique page views in one 6 hour span. Unreal, right? Especially considering we've only had a little over 1 million hits all-time.
Memphis Tider was my way to let out what needed to be fixed with the Alabama football and basketball programs. Coach Saban has righted the ship, and Coach Grant appears to be headed that direction as well. There is not a lot that is going wrong down in T-Town, and, to be honest, real life has stretched me past my limits on being able to properly keep up with the blog. There's nothing to bitch about (which is something I used to do really well), and my band and my job have taken up a lot of my free time. I still go to Tuscaloosa a lot, I still watch football at least 4 days a week (yeah, I have a LOT of games on VHS and DVD), I still play NCAA 2010 (and will be getting 2011 in July), and am still just as big a fan as I ever was. I just won't be doing a blog anymore.
From time to time, you'll be able to catch my making points on different things at RollBamaRoll.com, so it's not like I'm gone forever.
I can't thank enough all the people that helped out with this blog -- my dad, the guys at RBR, Pelican State Sports, 3rd Saturday in Blogtober, Chris Vernon, BamaNation.net, The Bama Report, and many many many others that contributed and helped spread the word about the site. This blog was a huge deal to me for a very long time, and it helped me meet and interact with some really amazing people, and I now have friends that I would have never had. All of you have been incredible, and I truly appreciate everything that you've done to help myself and the website become successful in the blogosphere.
So we're going to end this with one last lil hurrah. I want to thank my friend Kleph, from RollBamaRoll.com, for keeping on me to get the last goodbye out there. We're going to end it with my last time hosting the Crimson and White Roundtable.
1. After hearing as much as I have about BJ Scott, Dre Kirkpatrick, Rod Woodson, etc, is it possible that the secondary this year may actually be better than last year's squad?
I think it will, for sure, be more talented. However, I have a feeling that this group may be a little less disciplined than last year's. Last year's group, with Arenas, Jackson, Green, Barron, Johnson, and Woodall may have lacked overall skill, but their fundamentals were, for the most part, flawless. I have a feeling that some of the kids on this year's squad may get away from their fundamentals a touch. But, it comes with time. Just imagine what the secondary will be like in 2011. Now THAT'S fun to think about.
2. How will all of the awards and honors, especially from his hometown, affect Mark Ingram's performance this season?
I don't believe it will have any effect on this kid at all. At the end of the day, the best possible thing for any of these guys, no matter the awards, is competition. Mark Ingram has 2 or 3 guys behind him that, had they been in the starters role last year, they would have been in New York instead of him. He has people to keep him on his toes, and if you think for one second that some damn trophy means anything to Coach Saban, you've lost your mind. He's just like everyone else on the team, and if he starts slacking, you can bet your ass he'll be riding pine, watching Richardson, Lacy, Goode, and a host of others pick up yards behind that offensive line.
3. Could you see Greg McElroy as a legitimate early round selection in the NFL draft next year? Why or why not?
No, I don't, but I do see him getting drafted. Hell, even Jay Barker got drafted. The NFL has this thing about winners. For some reason, if you bring good team chemistry, and you understand how the game works, there's a spot for you somewhere in the league. McElroy is a great pro-style quarterback. He throws correctly, he's got great field vision, he distributes the ball well, and he knows how to read defenses. To us, and most coaches, that means he's a winner and that he should be able to play. However, GMs will notice that he's not particularly fast, he's not big, and his arm isn't exactly a cannon. All of those traits will drop him, but he'll end up somewhere, and he'll be successful at whatever he ends up doing.
4. James Willis was a master recruiter and one hell of a linebackers coach. We haven't talked much about what the loss of him means to our staff. Tell us what you think the effect will be with him gone to Texas Tech.
I would like to think that it won't matter who is doing the recruiting for us down in Mobile, because Nick Saban is still the coach, and we just won a National Championship. However, recruiting is all about relationships - not only with the kids, but with high school coaches, etc. We are now on our 3rd assistant in 3 years to be assigned to the Mobile area. I don't believe it will make a huge difference because Saban himself focuses on that area, but I wouldn't be surprised if some other schools make some in-roads there.
5. Have you ever seen a state whose political views can be switched by football rumors? The Tim James fiasco is absolutely incredible to me how much football can mean to a state.
The issue with the Finebaum show last week, and the way everything has gone down so far this week has just been ridiculous. It casts a black eye on the entire state, and while I look at it and think it's great that the game of football has such an impact on our political views, the rest of the country still views it as pathetic. I, personally, wish that none of this had come up because, honestly, it shouldn't matter what someone's football allegiance is when it comes to government.
So there we go! The final post for Memphis Tider (unless something insane happens, which I'm doubting. If you'd like to keep up with what I'm doing, check out the following sites. Until then, I'll catch all of you on the flip side! Take care and ROLL TIDE!
Roll Tide! Thanks for the awesome over the years. # posted by bassdrop77 : 10:40 AM
Damn you Gary!!! How can you hang it up now that we're on top?!?!?! Haha...You really will be missed. Thank you for all of your hard work over the years. I have truly enjoyed reading your posts and will miss checking this site every morning. I still owe you a beer, and I plan on buying you one next time I'm in Memphis. I hope that you'll be invited to contribute over at RBR on a regular basis. Thanks again for everything and ROLL TIDE!!!! # posted by Clay W. : 10:42 AM
Clay -- I'm hanging it up BECAUSE we're on top! Better to go out a winner, right? hahaha # posted by Memphis Tider : 10:47 AM
I hear ya. Good luck with everything going forward. I hope to hear Prosevere on Sirius Radio Octane one day. # posted by Clay W. : 10:57 AM
Thanks for the memories and good luck with your band. Looking forward to reading you on RBR.
Roll Tide! # posted by TideTraveler : 12:34 PM
Roll Tide i'll retweet to my my twitter followers out there. # posted by Mr.Sircy : 9:34 PM
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