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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

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

SEC Media Days: I'm Back

A lot has happened in the year since I was last able to write here. I won't bother with catching up on old times, since we all know the good and bad things that happened in 2013. I will just start from this week, my favorite week of the offseason.

SEC Media Days is kicking in Hoover right now. This event will always hold an especially fond place in my heart, for obvious reasons. For those who don't know, or remember, go HERE. And you can also read THIS excellent article by @JonSolomonCBS that will catch you up on the past craziness that has been SEC Media Days.

But they've already forgotten about me because of this guy:

Alabama Fan With $300 National Championship Ring Hat


The past couple weeks, we've had to deal with a couple of off the field incidents, as is always the case during the summer for most major college football programs. Speedy back up running back Kenyan Drake had yet another brush with the law, and while this most recent case was much ado about nothing, it remains to be seen how it will affect his playing time and position on the team. Whatever happens, it should go without saying that Nick Saban will make the best decisions and we should respect whatever he does as he clearly knows what he is doing.

Huge defensive lineman Jarran Reed was arrested for DUI after he crashed into a parked car in his 2011 Dodge Charger. The incoming JUCO transfer blew a .13 on the breathalyzer. Alot of fun was made of Auburn QB Nick Marshall after he was caught with marijuana in his car during a traffic stop in Georgia last week, but that has nothing on this. While Marshall's actions were idiotic considering the position he is in, he didn't put anyone else in danger other than himself, and that is of course debatable these days with the changing views on and more knowledge of marijuana. But what Reed did, without question, put himself and anyone else with him or around him in danger and I doubt we see him on the field for awhile this year. I have faith that Saban will punish him justly and that Reed will learn from this. As bad as it is, people do make mistakes, especially young people, and there is always room for forgiveness and this can be put in the past if Reed does whatever Saban has in mind for him from this point forward.

 "We are disappointed in Jarran's actions and this is obviously not the kind of behavior we expect from our players," he said. "It is a privilege to represent the University of Alabama and there are responsibilities that go along with that privilege. We'll evaluate the situation and determine the appropriate discipline so better choices and decisions can be made in the future." - Nick Saban.

RB Altee Tenpenny was cited for possession of marijuana back in April, and LB Dillon Lee was arrested for DUI also in April. These guys are all for sure in Saban's doghouse. Thankfully, we have plenty of depth and every single one of these guys, while very talented players, has at least a couple other guys who can take their spots without us noticing a difference.

"The time for leniency has ended. The use of “internal discipline” is no longer enough. Nick Saban needs to tighten the reins on his program, make an example of someone publicly, and send the message to every one of his players that the offseason has ended, the time for work is here and any instances of poor behavior will not be tolerated." - Alex Scarborough. You can read his full article on all this HERE


As of this writing, Alabama has picked up 3 big time commitments for the 2016 class. Nick Saban is ridiculous and it is obvious that the man never sleeps. While Steve Spurrier is making jokes and pressing the flesh with the media, this is what Nick is doing: Preparing for future national titles. It is exactly why he is the very best there is.

4 star DT Benito Jones, Wayne County HS, Waynesboro MS. 
6'0 280
Chose Bama over Ole Miss, Georgia, Florida State 
Those who have seen him in person say that his hand-quickness, strength, and ability will make him among the top 2 or 3 guys in the country at his position when he graduates.

5 star CB Shyheim Carter, Kentwood HS, Kentwood, LA
6'0 185
Chose Bama over Georgia, Clemson, Mississippi St
Carter is considered the No. 1 DB prospect in the country in his class. Physicality is where is excels, so he fits the mold of a Dre Kirkpatrick of the future.

5 star ATH Demetris Robertson, Savannah Country Day School, Savannah, GA
6'0 165
Chose Bama over Auburn, Clemson, Florida

Robertson could be an elite talent at corner, safety, or wide receiver and is considered the No. 1 athlete in the country for 2016.

All 3 of these guys should be in the overall Top 30 when those lists come out in the future. Robertson and Carter have already been invited to the US Army All American Game.

Keep in mind, these kids won't set foot on campus for 2 years, but this is how you build a program that competes year in and year out for the top spot in the land.

News, Notes, and Links 

Jacob Coker, Jeff Driskel Potential SEC Villians 
"He’s no McCarron. Let’s get that out of the way first. Unlike his predecessor, Coker is about as unassuming as a major talent can get. He started out as a humble three-star recruit, and his disposition has remained the same. But with the runaway hype machine that’s surrounded his landing at Alabama -- not to mention that he transferred to Alabama in the first place -- you’ve got the perfect recipe for blind dislike."

Lane Kiffin also gets a mention of course.

Alabama's Flight Records Reveal Controlled Chaos Behind Securing The Nation's No. 1 Recruiting Class 
"Not even perhaps the most successful coach in the nation was immune to becoming just another frequent flyer in search of new talent. To determine just how frenzied this period was for Nick Saban, AL.com, through the Freedom of Information Act, obtained the logs of the 24-year-old plane (N1UA) registered to the Crimson Tide Foundation — the fundraising arm of the Alabama athletics department — that carried Saban and his staff to their destinations."

Steve Spurrier: Bama SEC Favorite
"Spurrier, who enters his 10th season leading the Gamecocks, called Alabama "the favorites" to win the SEC, in large part because of its recruiting efforts. The Crimson Tide wrapped up their third straight No. 1 class in February and have never finished outside of the top three in ESPN's rankings since Saban's first year in Tuscaloosa in 2007. With 16 current ESPN 300 commitments, they are well on their way to another top class."

Someone Hung An Alabama Flag In Texas A&M's Stadium 
"Someone -- perhaps an Alabama fan working as a construction worker doing renovations at Texas A&M's Kyle Field -- decided to have a little fun with the Tide's new SEC rival Monday morning and flew an Alabama flag outside of the stadium"

He got fired for it.

ESPN Projections For Each SEC Team Have Alabama Winning It All
"The Crimson Tide is projected to win 9.9 games and has a 4 percent chance of going undefeated. In addition to its 22.6 percent chance of winning the SEC, Alabama has a 38 percent chance of winning the SEC West. Alabama is the favorite in every game and has at least a 64.5 percent chance of winning all but the LSU (57.5) and Auburn (57.8) games"

Obviously, Alabama will win more than 10 games, but I like the way they crunch the numbers here.

"Auburn is the favorite to win every game this season except the Iron Bowl, but the Tigers have only the fourth-best odds of winning the SEC title for a second straight season."


Kirby Smart Is The Smartest Assistant Coach In College Football
“My family’s so happy in Tuscaloosa,” Smart said. “My wife loves it. We’ve got 6-year-old twins and a 2-year-old. We’ve been very fortunate. I moved seven times the first seven years I coached. The last, I guess, eight, going on eight, I’ve been in the same place, and my kids only know one place. So for us that’s very comfortable.”

Kirby Smart Ranks 4 Best Alabama Players He's Coached 

Marcell Dareus, Dont'a Hightower, Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, Javier Arenas.

Tide 2014: Coker Needs A Chance, Not Crushing Pressure
"If Coker doesn’t come right out of the gate looking like some combination of Joe Namath, Peyton Manning, Y.A. Tittle, an M1A1 Abrams tank and Secretariat, the fan backlash could be the biggest thing since … well, since the last second of the 2013 Auburn game. There is no meltdown like that of an angry Alabama fan."


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