About Me

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My name is Eric. My love of and loyalty to the University of Alabama football team is unparalleled and completely inappropriate. I hate all other teams, and wish them peril. Also, you can hear my music at www.reverbnation.com/EricBlackerby or www.youtube.com/EricBlackerbyMusic

Saturday, July 23, 2011

2011 SEC Media Days/I Hate Auburn

"Other than Tim Tebow, no one has drawn a bigger crowd of fans at SEC Media Days than Nick Saban, but one fan probably wishes he'd worn something else to the lobby of the Winfrey Hotel" - Mike Dubberly, Fox 6

Actually, Mike, you would be incorrect.

In case you didn't watch the news Friday, or read any internet message boards, or get on twitter, I will fill you in on the day that I had at SEC Media Days in Hoover, the shirt I chose to wear, and fans, media, and even Nick Saban's response to it.

The shirt in question is a white cotton shirt, with large crimson letters across the front with a simple message: I Hate Auburn.

I bought the shirt online several months ago. In fact, it came in the mail exactly a week before the tornado hit Tuscaloosa. At that time, I didn't feel like it was appropriate to wear the shirt. For awhile I didn't want to say anything negative about anyone or wear a shirt that would obviously be taken negatively. Too much was going on and I wanted to be respectful. I thought SEC Media Days would be a fun environment to wear the shirt, knowing that the lobby would be filled with almost nothing but Alabama fans, and I figured people would get a kick out of it. I was more than correct in that assumption, but I think I got a little more attention than I bargained for.

In the elevator up to the lobby, I was standing next to ESPN Radio's Sean Fox, and 3 or 4 other various radio guys. Fox joked, "I take it you're not an Auburn fan"

As soon as I entered the lobby, a guy came up and asked if he could take a picture of my shirt, told me he thought it was awesome, and said, "Roll Tide"

This was basically the reaction that I expected. I knew that other Alabama fans would enjoy it. I thought that maybe a few members of the media would see it and get a laugh. I had no idea that by the end of the day, I would have been interviewed by almost everyone there, including Huntsville's 97.7 The Zone, The Tuscaloosa News, The Auburn-Opelika News, ESPN Radio, CSS, SEC Network, Atlanta's 680 The Fan, The Knoxville News Sentinel, The Birmingham News, CBS 42, The Orlando Sentinel, The L.A. Times, Huntsville's WHNT 19, and at least 15 others that I can't even remember. There was about an hour there, where nobody passed without wanting to put a microphone in my face and ask me a few questions. I spent about 10 minutes talking to Paul Finebaum, and had several conversations with Jon Solomon and Kevin Scarbinsky of the Birmingham News. I can say right now that I am definitely a fan of Scarbinsky's. He was really nice to me.

I don't even know who all I talked to, and there's no telling how many different places around the country my story has been written.

I know when they first saw the shirt, they rushed up to me thinking they had another Harvey Updyke. It was easy to assume that I would say something stupid and hilarious and it would make for a great story. I was actually pretty happy with the fact that I was able to hold intelligent conversations with all these guys, and that I was much more informed than they were expecting me to be. 

I caused such a frenzy that one reporter even saw fit to tell Nick Saban about me. Coach Saban was asked if he could take me aside and say anything to me, what would he say? Coach responded, "I would tell him that it's not personal. It really isn't personal. That is not really the way that we should respect the opponents that we have."

The reporter who asked the question couldn't wait to rush back down to the lobby and tell me what Coach had said and get my response. At the time, I felt a little discouraged. I was really disappointed for a second that the humor of the moment seemed to be lost on the one man I respected more than anyone else in that building. So I gave my response to that reporter, and repeated it to about 7 other guys who rushed down to see what I thought about Coach's words: It was all in fun. It really was. I didn't think that anyone would see it as a negative thing, and other than Coach Saban's response, it wasn't a negative thing. It got a lot of positive attention. I was pretty much the life of the party. At least a dozen people wanted pictures of the shirt, and I posed with several fans

After I left the hotel, I talked to some fans who supported me. That included one of the main members of the Sons Of Saban, who found me on facebook and told me to call him. This guy was PISSED that Coach Saban said what he said. His opinion was that Saban was throwing a fan under the bus. That he may be the main man, but he can't control what us fans say and do and how we support our team. It was our team before it was his team, and fans like me pay his bills. Fans who never set foot in a classroom at the University of Alabama, but pack out that stadium every Saturday in the fall. These were the opinions of someone, who was a member of a group called the SONS OF SABAN. I would've thought anyone in a group with that name would unconditionally support anything Nick Saban said or did, but I was clearly wrong.

I turned on the Paul Finebaum Show on the way home, and I was immediately the first topic of conversation. One guy said something bad about me for not having ever been a student at Alabama, to which several other callers called in and blasted him, saying that they were 110% behind me and that they loved my shirt and how I supported my team. I've been a long time listener of the Finebaum Show, and it was strange to suddenly be a part of the show like that.

Predictably, Auburn fans are having a field day with this. I have read enough of the Auburn message boards and the twitter accounts of several Auburn people I know, to know that they are lumping me in with Harvey Updyke. "We had Harvey Updyke, now we have Eric Blackerby" was one of the first things I read from them. Of course, I didn't expect any intelligent response from that side. But again, it's all in fun, and they will have theirs. I could care less what Auburn fans think of me. It's the Alabama fan opinion that matters to me.

So I will share a few responses from them:

"Remember if a blank envelope comes in the mail with Season Tickets, you still have to pay the taxes on those!!!!"

"If Coach Saban could take Eric out behind the woodshed and tell him how he really felt, I'd bet he'd say that he hates those so-and-so's even more."

"I got a real kick out of this! You don't look like "a hatin" kind of guy!!! I have an I hate Auburn sticker from last year that I've been saving for the Clemson - Auburn game."

And my favorite:

"Lord, save me from holier-than-thou people whose underwear are obviously way too tight. Eric Blackerby you are our hero!"

So I thought about what the guy from Sons Of Saban said, and I thought about what some of the callers on the radio said, and I have come to a conclusion that I never thought I would reach. I actually disagree with Nick Saban. And I can't believe that. While I feel that he was just responding to a question and giving a politically correct answer, like most any of the coaches would do on the spot, I kinda wish he had been a little more honest. I don't expect him to say something like, "Well Hell yeah, I hate Auburn too". Of course not. But ever since he has come to Alabama, he has gone out of his way to say that he loves the fans, he loves our passion for our team, and yes, our craziness. As far as having class, I would think that my shirt pales in comparison to some of the things he was overheard yelling at his players during the Iron Bowl in 2008. Let's just say he didn't have any glowing praise of Auburn that day.

As far back as anyone can recall the sport has been filled with fans like me. Far worse fans than me. Fans that would poison trees and destroy property. I hardly think that wearing a shirt saying I hate the team that is my team's bitter rival constitutes a hate crime. It's what college football is all about. Passion and anger. Intense love and respect for your own team, while despising everything that the other team stands for. It's Bear Bryant referring to Auburn as the Cow College, or that school down the road. It's Woody Hayes pushing his car across the state line when it ran out of gas because he wasn't going to buy "Michigan gas". These rivalries, and our emotions around them, are what makes college football so awesome. It's not a church social. It's absolute WAR to some people.

I like what Alabama linebacker Dont'a Hightower had to say about it:

"At times things do get out of hand when it comes to the Iron Bowl rivalry. Sometimes you just kind of think, 'This is going to be because of a football game? Y'all are really going to do this?' At the same time, I love it. Whenever they come together, you never know what's going to happen."

I would like for Coach Saban to have said something like, "Well I haven't seen the shirt, and I can't really comment about someone's intentions when I don't know them."

That would've been very simple, and it would have been a non story, and I wouldn't have felt about an inch tall

Monday, July 18, 2011

Reuben Foster and O.J. Howard Rolling With The Tide

Reuben Foster is widely considered one of the top linebacker prospects for the class of 2013. He is 6'1", 230 with above average speed. He is a very instinctive and intelligent player. The only thing he will need to improve upon as far as anyone can tell right now are pass coverage skills, which of course most young linebackers need to improve upon at first. That's one thing that is an advantage of playing for Nick Saban as a linebacker. You know you are going to learn how to cover. A good comparison to me would be current Alabama linebackers C.J. Mosley and Trey DePriest, who are of similar size and skill set. Of course, there are no ratings or rankings for kids in that class, because it is way too early. But you can know that he is an elite player by looking at the list of schools who have already been after him, after only his sophomore year at Troupe County High in LaGrange, GA: Alabama, Georgia, Auburn, Clemson, South Carolina. Those are schools who typically always go after and get really good linebacker and defensive line prospects. Even without any official rating for a player, when all these coaches who know far more than we do are after a player this early, you know he's a good one. Gentry Estes of 247 Sports says that Foster is a candidate to be the No 1 overall player in the country next year

Today, Reuben announced that he would be attending the University Of Alabama to play for Nick Saban.

When asked why he chose Alabama, he said, "I chose Alabama because of the tradition they have and it is like family there. They have a lot of national championships and that is what I want to play for. I also like how they put a lot of linebackers in the NFL because that is where I want to play."

Sounds like a smart kid. It's also especially sweet to get a guy like this, when you consider the fact that Auburn wanted him badly. Trooper Taylor had been recruiting him really hard, and LaGrange, GA is right down the road from Auburn. Hurts, doesn't it Troop?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LZwyCUH_1sA Highlights of Foster. If he plays like that in college, he will be as good as you can get

O.J. Howard is a 6'5" 220 prospect out of Autauga Academy in Prattville, AL who could play linebacker or Tight End, though he is expected to be a linebacker in college. He also announced today that he will be attending the University Of Alabama. According to Scout.com, his only offer right now is Alabama. Of course it is early, and we have seen several cases over the last few years where Saban offers a guy early that not many others are after yet, then the guy blows up and gets multiple offers from top schools and ends up being a top recruit. Either way, we all know we can trust Nick Saban's track record when it comes to guys like this. If Saban wants him, he is definitely good enough to play for the Crimson Tide

"I committed to Alabama this morning", O.J. told Scout.com, "I walked in Coach Saban's office. He told me they liked me and wanted to offer me. He told me I didn't have to rush my decision at all. I felt like the time was right. I knew where I wanted to go. I went ahead and committed."

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Football Saturdays In The South

Emmy award winning Havoline Football Saturdays In The South kicked off it's 8th season this weekend. The first episode Friday had three features: Tornado relief efforts in Tuscaloosa and the Alabama Crimson Tide coaches and athletes response to it, Boston College Linebacker Luke Kuechly, and a segment about Clemson fans getting to go on a road trip with the staff to see what goes on behind the scenes.

Of course, it is the first feature that I will be talking about today. It took up a full half of the show

They had several Alabama athletes on there that were in the middle of the tornado and survived. Josh Rosecrans, Barrett Jones and Courtney Upshaw had great stories, but when Carson Tinker got to talking about his story with his girlfriend Ashley Harrison, I must admit the room got a little dusty up in here. Carson and Ashley were huddled together inside a closet when the tornado destroyed everything around them, throwing Carson 75 yards into a field. He suffered only a concussion, a few cuts and bruises, and a broken hand. Ashley wasn't as lucky. She died of a broken neck

"I try not to ask the why questions. I know there's a reason. There's a reason that Ashley's not here just like there's a reason that I am here. I was sitting right beside her holding onto her and I made it. So I'm thankful for that, but I know that there is alot of responsibility that comes with that too and I'm trying to go out and fulfill my purpose, of whatever I need to do. I'm never gonna completely move on, but I have made peace with it. God has really revealed Himself to me through all this, and I just trust in him" - Carson Tinker

"As long as that football field is standing, I feel Tuscaloosa is gonna be here. And once we kick that ball off against Kent St, it's gonna be....let's just say, a party. We're gonna celebrate after the win, and we'll have a good time" -Courtney Upshaw

"I think this year we're gonna be playing for something a little bigger than just ourselves. We're playing for the city of Tuscaloosa. All these people have supported us for so many years, and now we wanna support them too" - Barrett Jones

I can not tell you how much I love these guys, this Alabama football team this year. Life is not all about football, no matter how much you might think it is, but sometimes sports have a way of healing alot of wounds. If only to distract you for a few hours on a Saturday and make you forget about your problems.

I'm sure it will be re-aired a time or two. When it does, y'all need to set your DVR's if you haven't seen it. I've never played a down of football in my life, but I was ready to throw on some shoulder pads and cleats after listening to these guys talk, and seeing what they are doing for the community. You can tell how much this season is going to mean to them. They are going to be completely focused every week, I believe. They have motivation from every angle, like never before. If you can watch your rival win the National Championship, after you gave up a 24 point lead to them, allowing them to even get there, then see half of your town destroyed, and not be motivated to play hard for your own pride and for everyone else that supports you, and needs something to enjoy, then you need to go play for Tennessee or something.

Watching Alabama's football team win games won't bring anyone back who is lost, but it can certainly be a source of great joy for the people in that community and in this state. These guys understand that and I think they are going to win every game this year. They have to, and they know it

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Gene Chizik Is A Moron

This is only my 7th entry on this blog, and I was trying to avoid talking too much about Auburn. And I already had one post that was about an AU player, albeit a positive one.

But I really can't leave this one alone

Last month, at the SEC meetings in Destin, Fla., something happened that has just now been reported by Pete Thamel of the New York Times. And it has made my night.

Apparently, at a certain point, Julie Roe Lach, the NCAA's vice president for enforcement was speaking to the room, which included all of the head basketball and football coaches in the SEC, as well as the Athletic Directors, and the Commissioner. When she opened up the room for discussion, Auburn coach Gene Chizik raised his hand and went into a barrage of questions about their investigation of Cam Newton. He wanted to know why they NCAA had not formally declared the investigation over. The exchange was cordial at first, until he persisted and complained that their open ended nature had hurt Auburn recruiting and all this, to which she got irritated, and responded, "You'll know when we're finished. And we are NOT finished"


So, I'm confused. I mean, all of my friends that are Auburn fans have been telling me for months that the NCAA investigation was over with them, that Cam had been cleared, and so obviously they had done nothing wrong since the NCAA had cleared Cam. Did I mention they have steadfastly insisted that the investigation was OVER?

Yeah, not so fast Boogers.

If you are Gene Chizik, shouldn't you know better than to pick that fight? Why would you publicly call out the NCAA's Vice President of enforcement. This woman has a part in deciding what punishment is handed down to schools when they are found to have violated NCAA rules. This woman has a say in the future of your school, if it is found that you did something wrong. This woman is the POlice.

This would be like going up to a cop and being like, "Hey bro, that guy over there stole my weed. Arrest him"



Ok, to Hell with it! I'm just going to be honest. There is no WAY Auburn did nothing wrong in the recruitment of Cameron Newton. No chance. He wasn't even considering them until near the end, after his dad said he didn't want his son to be a "rented mule", in reference to Mississippi St, where his son wanted to go. It has been admitted to by all sides, including the NCAA that Cecil Newton told MSU that it would take $180,000 to get Cam. That falls through, and then all the sudden he goes to a school that wasn't in on it and everything is on the up and up? You can't convince me of that

I already thought that Auburn fans were being the most naive, cultish group of children by acting like everything was fine and they were clean. I already thought that Auburn was still going to end up in NCAA trouble over all of this.

But now, Gene Chizik has almost guaranteed that the NCAA will be out to get them. Auburn's punishment for their blatant cheating and thumbing their noses at the NCAA will be worse now, because of Gene Chizik, and I am glad that idiot is not our coach

Monday, July 11, 2011

The 2011 Alabama Defense

This is the most ferocious group of defensive players I have seen on the team at one time, in my life. The 2009 defense was the reason we won the NC, as was the 1992 defense, and of course they have to prove it, but I think this one has a chance to continue that tradition

The front seven includes 7 or 8 linebackers that could start for any team in the SEC and most any team in the country. Donta Hightower, Courtney Upshaw, Jerrell Harris, Tana Patrick, Chris Jordan, CJ Mosley, and Adrian Hubbard were ALL 4 star recruits coming out of high school. Nico Johnson and Trey DePriest were 5 star recruits. Anthony Orr, Jonathan Atchison and Senior Alex Watkins are all above average players at this position, who would probably see significant time at most other SEC schools. Linebacker is my favorite position, so I will be a happy guy watching this group bust heads this fall

The secondary was an early liability in 2010 due to having 3 new starters, one of which was a true freshman, but that group is experienced now and is easily the best in the country. It is led by safety Robert Lester, who led the SEC in interceptions with 8 last year, and safety Mark Barron who led the SEC in interceptions with 8 in 2009. If that's not enough, you have the No.1 rated corner in the 2009 recruiting class, Dre Kirkpatrick on one side, and the No. 1 rated corner in the 2010 class, Dee Milliner on the other. DeQuan Menzie, who wasn't even a starter last year, had the best spring of all the corners and could challenge Milliner for his spot. Dre is going to be one of the best in the country, and probably a high first round draft pick if he has the kinda year I think he will. Behind these guys, you have John Fulton, Jabriel Washington, and Phelon Jones, all of whom were top recruits as well. Recruiting rankings only take you so far, and you still have to be that player in college that you were in high school but I am using these numbers to show just how stacked we are in talent.

If there is a weakness in the Alabama defense, it is one that could cost us if it is not improved this year: The lack of a pass rush. Coach Saban likes to point out that pure sack numbers are not how you judge a pass rush, that it's all about "affecting the quarterback". And while this is true, it cannot be overlooked that we were not at the top of the league in getting to the QB last year. Even though our secondary can hold their own and our linebackers can cover also, if we give QBs 5 or 6 seconds to look around it is going to kill us.

That said, I have alot of confidence in guys like Ed Stinson coming off the side. I think that we are going to do much better this year in getting to QBs. I think Upshaw and Hightower coming from the LB position can do a good enough job that our numbers will increase. Personally, I'd kinda like to see Hightower move to Defensive End. We certainly have the LBs to make up for losing him and he would be a terror if he could just come off the end all game long. I think Nico could take his role pretty easily, just as he did in 2009 when Hightower went down with a knee injury. Then you could have Mosley, Upshaw, and Harris all on the field at the same time. That idea excites the hell out of me. Nevertheless, I will trust the coaches to make the right personnel decisions.

This group is not without hype. It has the chance to be the most decorated defense in the country.

The Thorpe Award is given to the nation's best defensive back every year. Lester, Barron, and Kirkpatrick have ALL made the preseason watch list

The Bednarik Award is given to the most outstanding defensive player in the nation every year. Barron, Hightower, Kirkpatrick, Upshaw, and Lester are ALL on the list

The Lott Trophy, for best defensive impact player, has Barron and Hightower on their preseason list

The Bronko Nagursky Award, for best defensive player, also has Barron, Hightower, Kirkpatrick, Upshaw and Lester on their list

The Butkus Award, for the nation's best Linebacker won't release their preseason list until later in the week, but I'm sure Hightower and Upshaw will be on that list

I would certainly hate to be an opposing player trying to gain yards on these boys this fall.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Duron Carter Is Ready To Go

Three months ago, NFL Hall Of Famer Chris Carter's son, Duron Carter, announced that he would be heading to Tuscaloosa to play the rest of his college career for the Crimson Tide.

Duron played for one of the top high school programs in the country, St. Thomas Aquinas in Ft. Lauderdale, FL, and was a 4 star recruit, ranked top 10 in the country at his position. He started 3 games as a true freshman at Ohio State. And now he has another year of experience against good competition at Coffeyville Community College, where he had transferred after having academic problems at OSU.

He is more mature now, though, and his dad being who he is, you know he is going to have a great understanding of how to play the position. Tuscaloosa is where the NFL great wanted his son to play. He knows, like the rest of us do, if Duron is going to get in line and do well, he will find no better coach to play for than Nick Saban.

Duron is an excellent route runner, has tremendous hands, and at 6'5", is at least an inch taller than Julio Jones, while being almost the same weight at 210.

He was originally expected to enroll during the first summer session, but there was an issue with a class that he had to take again during the summer, so he got delayed and was expected to enroll in the second summer session which was this week.

Duron and his family arrived in tuscaloosa a few days ago. He signed Friday and is immediately eligible to start working out with his teammates at Alabama. However, due to the way the academic calendars lined up over the summer officials weren't able to get it all done in time to meet the Thursday registration deadline.

So instead, Duron will have to wait til August 4th  to start classes and will report to fall camp that day, along with everyone else.

Duron hopes to wear No. 8 for Alabama, just like Julio Jones. Those are big shoes to fill, but if he can even come close to that level I think we will all be happy

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Dee Hart Tears ACL

Demetrius Hart, 5 star true freshman running back, tore his ACL in a 7 on 7 drill Tuesday night. This is a guy who enrolled early and played in the spring game. He had caused enough of a splash that two returning RB's, Demetrius Goode and Corey Grant, felt the need to transfer to other schools in search of playing time.

I wonder if either of those guys wishes they had hung around a bit longer. I for one, have no regrets that they left. Grant hadn't made any moves in his two years here so far, and Goode was serviceable but nowhere near the talent of a guy like Hart. Just because Hart was going to take some carries away from returning backup Eddie Lacy and Heisman candidate Trent Richardson, doesn't mean that Grant or Goode would have.

But MAN, we could really use a little more depth than it looks like we are going to have right now. We entered the spring with 6 scholarship RB's and now we are down to 3 going into fall camp. The 3 we have are all extremely talented, but what if one of them gets hurt?

I'm not going to crown Jalston Fowler the next Jerome Bettis just because he ran all over Duke and Michigan St in mop up duty, but the guy does appear to be impressive, and he will have to step up as his role will no doubt be increased. Hopefully, he will take full advantage of this opportunity. 

I know that I came away from the spring game very impressed with Dee Hart. He looked almost as good as Trent on the field and he was going to be a huge contributer this year. I think he would've made the same impact for us as Trent did in 2009. And now we will have to wait until at least the 2012 season to see what we have in Hart. But even then, things aren't certain. Dont'a Hightower tore his ACL in September of 2009, and while it appeared he had recovered quickly and was ready for the 2010 season, everyone knows he wasn't himself until the Michigan St game in January 2011. So it took almost 16 months for Hightower to get back to being the player he had been.

Hopefully, it won't take Dee as long. Maybe a year to learn and bulk up will do him good, and it will be a blessing in the long run.

Either way, I'm just gonna list this as one more reason that Trent Richardson will win the Heisman Trophy in 2011

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Quan Bray's Tragedy

I just wanted to share my thoughts on this terrible thing that has happened.

For those who don't know, Quan Bray is going to be a freshman running back at Auburn this year. Yesterday morning, the news came out that his mother had been shot and killed by her husband.

It's times like this that things are put into true perspective and we learn about ourselves as people.

It's events such as these that render our love for one team or hate for another completely meaningless.

It doesn't matter who you root for or against. All we can do as people is to lend a helping hand whenever possible and show our support for each other during real life tragedies

Losing a parent is hard for anyone, at any age, for any reason. But when it is to something as senseless as this, it is especially hard. And I just wanted to use this space, this trivial little forum I have created for myself, to extend my thoughts and prayers to Quan Bray and his family.

Best of luck to you in the future, Quan, and see you on the field!

Saturday, July 2, 2011

We Have It Really Good

I was just reading through 'Bama Magazine's yearbook issue and it's pretty exciting when you think about what a good position we are in right now under Coach Saban.

Think back to January of 2007, when you first found out that Saban was coming to Alabama. How elated were you? I was pretty stoked. I hated Saban when he was at LSU, of course, but I knew what a great coach he was and I knew he would turn us into contenders again. 1992 had been a long time ago. I was only 9 when that Sugar Bowl was played and the idea that we could just get back into the big picture with teams like USC, Oklahoma, Texas, Florida, and Ohio State seemed like a mere dream.

Now, remember back in 07 when Saban came. We were so happy to have such a proven good coach coming to coach our boys. Our opinions of him were based on the fact that he took LSU from 3-8 the year before to 8-4 in his first year, won the NC in 2003, and basically turned them into a perennial national power. Everyone knows that LSU is one of the best teams in the country now, STILL, 6 years after he left. He built them up to that level, and so we thought he could do the same here for us.

And we were right. But the thing is, he has had more success at Alabama, already, than he did at LSU. Before coming to Tuscaloosa, Nick Saban had never won 10 games 2 years in a row. He had never coached a Heisman winner. The coach that we see coaching our team right now is BETTER than the one that landed in Tuscaloosa in 2007 to a crowd of fans so happy to see him that one drunken lady even kissed him. He has set Alabama up for consistent domination that he never saw at LSU.

All you have to do is watch almost any NFL game right now to see the amount of great players he put in the league from LSU, and even that is better at Bama now. The talent level is ridiculous. We had 4 first rounders this past draft, and we have 6 players, SIX, coming back this year that are projected as possible first rounders next year.

All you have to do is look at the fact that this last season was a major disappointment to so many of us, and you realize how far we have come in really a short time. In 2007, we lost to Lousiana freaking MONROE. LOUSIANA MONROE! Over the last 12 years, we have lost games to Lousiana Tech and Northern Illinois also. And Utah. And Southern Miss. And Central Florida.


And now, alot of us, including myself, were pissed that we *only* won 10. That's a far climb from hiring 4 coaches in 8 years and losing 6 in a row to Auburn.

Speaking of Auburn. Probably the reason this last season stung so bad, was that we had to watch The Intstitute Of Bovine Proctology win the NC. At least, that's what did it for me. And knowing that we had at least a dozen guys on the team that could end up being first round draft picks and we still couldn't win it all.

So we have gotten really spoiled. And I don't really mind. Because it's just another testament to the drastic change Saban has brought to town.

We have won 36 games in the last 3 years, and who doesn't believe it could be 50 wins in 4 years after 2011 is said and done?