Category Archives: Whoa, oh, Alabama

Tear down this wall, Coach Saban!

It’s been tough getting top talent out of Alabama since the Gus Bus drove in.

Whatever the reason, it’s made it nearly impossible for outside teams to poach recruits. Since Malzahn took over at Auburn in December 2012, there have been 28 recruits from Alabama ranked in the ESPN 300. Of those 28, only seven left the state. In that same span, there have been eight prospects ranked in the top 50, and all eight went on to sign with Alabama or Auburn.

The question is, are we on the brink of a change?  If you’re a Georgia fan, you sure hope so.

But that run could be coming to an end soon. Maybe as soon as next Wednesday when ESPN 300 linebackers Ben Davis and Mack Wilson announce their decisions and sign their letters of intent.

Both Davis and Wilson have Alabama in their top two. That shouldn’t come as a huge surprise. They’re homegrown. But the other school in their top two isn’t Auburn, the other in-state power. It’s Georgia. And with former Crimson Tide defensive coordinator Kirby Smart now the head coach in Athens, the Bulldogs have become a real threat to land both players.

“I felt the move coming because [Smart] had been there so long under Coach Saban,” Wilson said. “I felt like he had enough experience to go along and win him some national championships also. It was a great move for him and also his family.”

Davis admits he was a little more surprised when Smart left Alabama for Georgia, but the move has had a profound impact on his recruitment.

“That’s why [Georgia] boosted up on my list,” Davis said. “I had a great visit while Coach [Mark] Richt was there. It felt like home to me. But with [Smart] going there and Coach [Mel] Tucker — the secondary coach at Alabama — going there, it really boosted them on my list.”

That being said, I’ll be shocked if Smart signs either kid.  The question for Georgia is whether will it be worth devoting serious resources to chasing other top Alabama recruits in the future.

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UPDATE:  More here from the folks at al.com.

16 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Recruiting, Whoa, oh, Alabama

Monday morning buffet

Man, it’s already the first of June.

18 Comments

Filed under Academics? Academics., Arkansas Is Kind Of A Big Deal, Gators, Gators..., Georgia Football, Look For The Union Label, Science Marches Onward, See You In Court, The Blogosphere, Whoa, oh, Alabama

“The charges against Taylor will be reviewed at a later time.”

Boy, that didn’t take long.

So, does Saban give Taylor a mulligan now?  And how long before the false reporting to law enforcement charge gets buried?

Kabuki theater, with a badge and court.

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UPDATE:  Yeah, this is real cut and dried.

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Filed under Crime and Punishment, Whoa, oh, Alabama

Great moments in bureaucracy

I’m guessing it’s not a good thing when the head of a task force you authorized to get your ass out of a crack for making a very unpopular decision sends out an email to the other members confirming you lied.

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Filed under It's Not Easy Being A Mid-Major, Whoa, oh, Alabama

Wednesday morning buffet

Dig in, peeps.

  • Jay Rome wants to have fun this season, instead of “It’s always been about going out and trying not to hurt myself anymore.”
  • I got excited seeing the word “wheel” used in the context of Georgia’s offense, but it turns out all Seth meant was that Schottenheimer is tweaking the terminology of the play calls, not the system itself.
  • Dennis Dodd insists that football is a money loser at most schools, but those schools still want football.
  • Steve Spurrier is going to call the plays again this season.  Why did he ever stop? “It wasn’t going very well … You make a bad call and say, ‘Awe, dumbass. Why’d I do that? Maybe someone else can do it better.’”
  • Spurrier’s calling the plays, but he doesn’t know to whom yet.
  • SI.com’s Zac Ellis drops in on Athens to let us know how Georgia’s offense is progressing so far.
  • Corch wants you to know you’ve got nothing to worry about in the player injury department:  “The game is safer now. I can give you 28 years of experience. The game is safer now than it’s ever been.”
  • Nothing says school pride like having your mugshot taken in a logo’d t-shirt:  Parole Tide!!!

14 Comments

Filed under 'Cock Envy, College Football, Georgia Football, It's Just Bidness, The Body Is A Temple, The Evil Genius, Whoa, oh, Alabama

Who you gonna believe, me or those lying documents?

I’m not sure what I like best about this AP story on the UAB memos, that the university president thinks the old story line still works despite printed evidence to the contrary, or that the state legislator who’s calling for his head runs a Rivals Web site dedicated to UAB sports.

Either way, it’s quintessential Alabama.

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Filed under It's All Just Made Up And Flagellant, Political Wankery, Whoa, oh, Alabama

At UAB, the fix was already in.

You will be shocked, shocked to learn that the decision to kill the UAB football program was made before the release of the report the school had hired a consulting firm to furnish.  Hell, it may have been made before the start of the 2014 season.

… according to documents obtained by AL.com, the decision to kill football and the other two programs may have been made prior to the start of the football season.

The documents show that public relations firm Sard Verbinnen & Co. prepared detailed plans for UAB to announce last September that it would eliminate the three programs, months before the school made the actual announcement.

The documents also show the school pushed back the announcement date until the conclusion of the football team’s regular season on the advice of both Sard Verbinnen and CarrSports.

The documents indicate that Watts misled his student-athletes, coaches, supporters, faculty members and others on at least three separate occasions in November and December when he said the decision to kill the three sports wasn’t made until November.

As appalling as flat-out lying may seem – really, when will bureaucrats ever learn the coverup is usually worse than the original story? – it’s the rationale expressed for delaying the decision until after the football season ended that’s really shameless.

That memo offers “our basis for opposing a mid-season announcement.” It suggests the potential for “a critical mass of immediate transfer requests … where students refuse to finish out the season” or “a full team boycott.”

“If not effectively managed,” the memo says, “it is conceivable that UAB would not be able to field a competitive team – or any team.”

The memo also suggests the possibility that UAB football players “may react very badly if an announcement is made during the season.”

In other words, don’t do it for the kids.

And this is just as bad.

Sard Verbinnen, the New York PR firm, advised UAB in September to “allow other tough decisions to set the stage” to announce the review’s results. For instance, the university announced last June that UAB Medicine Employees would not receive annual merit raises based on “profound shifts in healthcare.”

Sard Verbinnen advised UAB that “further isolating the athletic department’s results from others announced earlier in the season will also lessen the chances that the UAB lumps all ‘tough decisions’ together and concludes that the university is in financial duress.”

It just goes to show you can never have enough bad news to prime the pump.

So why go to all the trouble to mislead almost everyone with an interest in UAB athletics?  It can’t be political, can it?  Nah… just ask the PR folks.

Also, Sard Verbinnen advised to wait until after the University of Alabama’s Board of Trustees meeting in November to help mitigate “unwarranted speculation” that the decision was driven by the board. Many UAB supporters believe several powerful trustees with Crimson Tide ties, including Paul Bryant Jr., got football killed. The board oversees UAB.

“The strategic review required time and careful deliberation by the department and the community’s perception of it should not be compromised by the negative optics that could result if it were communicated in parallel with a Board of Trustee meeting,” Sard Verbinnen wrote.

Good to see that’s been avoided.

17 Comments

Filed under It's Not Easy Being A Mid-Major, It's All Just Made Up And Flagellant, Whoa, oh, Alabama