Graphic Artist/Photographer. Football player from 3rd grade to semi-pro. I've coached grade school to Div II (and everything in-between). Life long Bama fan. Roll Tide!
The good? It was a large win as expected. Dominated a less talented team. The young LBs played fast and physical. Some slow reads, but their confidence seemed to grow with every play. Tua is Tua, and has the luxury of the best WR corp in the nation. Again, totally expected. The bad? The O-line had a lot of mistakes and blown assignments. Najee seemed to be auditioning for Dancing With The Stars instead of bringing the boom. If you are the hammer, be the hammer. The other RBs were not hugely impressive either. Some spots here and there, but certainly nothing to get excited about. Although some of that lack of production is probably the fault of the O-line. Bottom line: it was a seal clubbing. As it should have been. But some obvious areas that need to improve before the real competition starts. Before I anoint this team as a playoff lock, I want to see how they improve in the next couple of weeks. I have faith, just not blind faith. ROLL TIDE!
Another reason you overlooked is that college football is not nearly as popular on the West coast as in the South. With so many pro teams in multiple sports, you just don't see the intense fan support that we have here. Santa Clara does not quickly pop into my head when I think CFB hotbed. I do like someone else's comment that they should have multiple locations at hand to better fit the geography of the teams. However, with months of prep needed to host such an event, I think it is highly unlikely to happen. Besides ESPN could care less about the ticket sells as they are only interested in the total eyeballs watching the game (and commercials) on their network. The hosting site will continue to be who ever is willing to pony-up the most $$$. While I would love to go to enjoy the atmosphere and just to say I was there, I am just as content to watch the game on a huge TV with multiple channels to choose from. Oh, and the fridge and bathroom readily handy!
Mike Locksley explains why he continued recruiting for Alabama despite becoming Maryland’s new coach
Locksley is and has been a class act and great asset to the Tide. He has done a tremendous job in diversifying and developing this new Tide offensive attack. He will be missed. I wish him nothing but success at Maryland. But I sure do not envy the task he has ahead of him. However, I think he is a good choice to clean up the mess that Maryland football program has become. Thank you Coach Locksley for all that you have done for the Tide!
LOL, yeah that is true. However, I am a bit surprised at just how far flung some of Bama's recruiting has been. Imagine all the time, effort and distances that were devoted to evaluate and visit these recruits. It speaks volumes as to how intense their recruiting machine is and why Bama has enjoyed such success.
Seldom agree with a Vol, but you are absolutely correct. The idiot CBS announcing team make the games almost unwatchable. Oh, Santa, please bring us another Keith Jackson!
Continue to enjoy your ride on the Gus Bus for the next 6 years!
To answer your questions Fisher... First, yes he is that good. His ball placement and accuracy are insane. Soft throws, laser shots, long or short, he has to ability to hit his receivers in stride. This is a big reason for the crazy downfield numbers-the receivers never have to slow down. Secondly, yes, he has gotten pressured. He has great scrambling skills and the uncanny ability to find open receivers even while running for his life. He stays calm and focused on getting the ball downfield. However, he has a very quick release and is fantastic at making quick reads downfield that gets the ball out before pressure becomes and issue. And he is fearless in standing his ground and making throws with defenders in his face. Next, he is surrounded by great talent as well. Four RBs that would would be starters anywhere. A group of speedy WRs most of whom will eventually be playing on Sundays. An offensive line that has done a pretty good job in protection. Would he do as well on other teams? Yeah, I think he would be great on any team. As well as he is doing now? Who knows. A QB is just one player, and the surrounding cast is very important. But natural ability goes a long way and tends to elevate the play of others. I think this is certainly the case at Bama: his talents make everyone else better. Make no mistake this is not Jalen Hurts. Tua is not a game manager, but a game changer. OC Locksley has done a tremendous job of calling plays that exploit his skills and all the weapons around him. In addition, for the first time, the Tide has a dedicated QB coach (Dan Enos) that has vastly improved the skills of all the QBs. Obviously I am a Bama homer. However, I had my doubts about Tua coming into the season. He had a great half against Georgia in the NC game, but that was a small sample size. Hurts had proven himself in two seasons as being a winner. But seeing Tua in the first 3 games of the season convinced me that this young man is a real QB talent. Like we have never seen at Alabama. And I have been following the Tide for more than 40 years. Coaches, players, offensive play calling, have created a perfect offensive storm at Bama.
I think part of the reason for the lack of intensity for the defense is that they have not been forced into any "must have" situations. With the offense doling out incredible numbers, it is easy for the defense to relax - there has been no need for them to produce critical stops. The team play is so radically different for this year's Tide that it is very hard to gauge just exactly where the defense stands. While 11th place nationally in scoring D is well below typical Tide standards (and fan expectations), we have never seen this kind of explosive offense. It will be interesting to see how this Tide defense responds IF it is ever truly pressured to perform in a crucial situation.
As for staying through the blow out games, I much prefer that as opposed to white knuckling thru a game and praying my team can pull out a win. It is much more fun than watching team taking an a$$-kicking at home. Also, at the Bama games, I get to watch the potential stars of the next season. There is a real reason why Saban has developed a plug and play system at Bama: the 2nd and 3rd team guys get lots of valuable game time during the course of the season. I think this is one of the biggest reason he has had such consistent success. It also has to help in recruiting when recruits know that they are going to get game time early and often. Now Saban could keep the starters in, pad stats and run up scores as some coaches do. But I much prefer that he continues to develop players and produce championship caliber teams year after year.
First, about the scheduling. People do realize it takes two to tango, right? Getting other Power 5 schools to come to Tuscaloosa and the Saban Threshing Machine is probably a bit difficult. Or what AD wants Bama to come to their stadium and embarrass their team? Lots of fans may "want Bama" but how many people doing the scheduling really want that? Secondly, every major football program has to make X-amount of $'s. That means as many home games (and tickets sold) as possible. Show me a Power 5 team that does not buy a few teams (Austin Peay, Massachusetts,eh Georgia?). People, fans, & schools that live in glass houses should keep their rocks in their pockets. Finally, in Bama's defense, at least they have opened against some top opponents, albeit neutral site games. These teams were usually all ranked (some highly) and mostly perennial CFB powers. As these games are also scheduled years in advance, certainly Bama can't be held responsible if the teams that show up are less than expected (or if Bama was just more). At least they tried to up the competition. How many other teams took that chance in week 1, for the number of years Bama has?