I just wanted to post this, and let RBR analyze some real aspects of the team this year from a personal point of view. The Crimson Tide has always been a school where when everyone least expected it, a team with a uncanny amount of leadership, and a willingness to succeed goes the distance. Alabama is now back to national prominence, with several top 3 recruiting classes these past few years. When Spring practice begins, this thought must come to mind in every true fans heart..... Who is going to be the leader this year. Without leadership, our team will play exactly like last season. From a fans standpoint, people can point out many reasons why our team did not succeed last year, but leadership was one of the main reasons. From Saturday to Saturday, we saw our star players perform, yet that's exactly my point. We saw a group of individuals make up a team last year, not a team following a leader. It's not only going to take this Senior class coming together to set an example for the younger players, Its going to take Star players getting out of their comfort zone and maturing and becoming a leader. It is going to take a group of young men to say and act and play the part. A coach can only go so far on a team, and push their players. It takes a leader to push his teammates as well. Mark Ingram, and Julio Jones never solidified themselves as leaders last year. They simply put themselves through the motions in their last year, to make it to the draft. Obviously, this is why they were not considered for the Team Captain awards.After being named a Team Captain last year, Mark Barron has already started out on the wrong foot this year. This season could send us to the Big Easy, and to one of the most storied traditions in Crimson Tide history. Playing in the Sugar Bowl for the National Championship. Yet if we have no leadership, we will simply end up going through the motions, and play in the Capital One bowl, or Cotton Bowl.
Vince Lombardi said it best:
"A leader must identify himself with the group, must back up the group, even at the risk of displeasing superiors. He must believe that the group wants from him a sense of approval. If this feeling prevails, production, discipline, morale will be high, and in return, you can demand the cooperation to promote the goals of the company."
I by no means meant to call out these players, but as someone pointed out, Saban said on many occasion the Crimson Tide lacked leadership. By no means can ANYONE on this site say they know FOR A FACT that Mark and Julio were not leaders or were leaders for that matter. I simply stated that these two young men did not solidify themselves as leaders. There is a difference. Some lead by example while others are vocal leaders. For those who said they would listen to Saban and not me:
Per Crimson White interview after LSU loss:
According to Saban, building a since of leadership amongst the young Tide will be a major factor in succeeding the rest of the season.
“It’s going to be a combination of the chemistry, the leadership and the individual commitment to make this 2010 team memorable,” Saban said.
I do agree that our team was young, and this contributed to our shortcomings last year. Nerveless, that is where your leadership comes into play. Kevin Scarbinsky also said that he witnessed the lack of leadership. "An intangible matter, Scarbinsky said, was the fact that this team didn’t have quite the same chemistry and leadership as last year’s team."
OTS points out in a article about Leadership in the Athletic Offices and at The University how important this quality is.
This intangible continues down to the football team as well. The 2008 team was comprised of Chemistry and Leadership. Those intangibles made a decent team into an SEC Championship contender (12-0). Add Chemistry and Leadership into a group of men that are the best at what they do and you get ingredients that make a talented team into Champions (2009). Before that season Saban wanted Rolando McClain to mature from a leader to a Vocal leader. THAT my friend, is a powerful example of how one of several SOLIDIFIED leaders took our team to the National Championship. This was my first ever fan post so I knew I might rub a few people the wrong way, but it is just my take on things.
BTW not sure how to do an update so this was my way of changing the post