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"I think we are a stronger compliance group than we have ever been and that will hold true for years to come. We have restructured since Mike Ward (the compliance director for most of the past three years) left for Tennessee. We promoted Jonathan Bowen from within. Shane Lyons came aboard and replaced Dave Hart, and Shane's strength is in compliance from his days as the No. 2 person in the (Atlantic Coast Conference) office, so we feel we are very strong there in way we have realigned our staff." Moore stressed, though, that compliance requires more than a vigilant staff. "No question,the end of this probation has been a long time coming," he said. "We're pleased that we're past it, but it takes every person who loves the University to help support our compliance people. That's what we have stressed for these three years and will continue to stress."
I am simply not buying into Garry P's comparison to Alabama. It is a bit complicated. Yes, Alabama is an elite program and I am certainly not a shill for the SEC, but they had some bigger issues to face. There was a lot of public turmoil surrounding the Alabama head coaching job as the penalties were handed down. Franchione said he'd stay, then he didn't. Enter Mike Price....Exit Mike Price and then there was Mike Shula. The lack of stability at the head coaching position certainly walloped Alabama's recruiting on top of the sanctions that followed. I try not to be a Kiffin apologist, but in this respect USC did far better than anyone could have expected.
Days after receiving a scholarship offer from Nick Saban, Bakersfield, California lineman Cole Mazza has committed to Alabama, giving the Crimson Tide its 18th commitment for the Class of 2013, according to BamaOnline. Mazza told BamaOnline earlier this week that Saban was recruiting him as a long snapper, making Mazza the first long snapper ever to receive a scholarship offer from Saban.
1. Alabama: It was a tough call between Alabama and LSU for the top spot, but all the renovations to Bryant-Denny Stadium over the past few years gave Alabama the nod. Everything you need is right there at the Mal Moore Athletic Facility, including a full indoor practice complex. Nick Saban also said recently that a new weight room is in the works.
Awards go to programs that had scores in the top 10 percent of their respective sport. This year's top scores range anywhere from 978 to a perfect 1,000. Alabama has had at least one program receive a Public Recognition award since 2004-05. This is the women's golf team's second consecutive honor and the first for women's tennis.
Paul Bryant Jr., president pro tempore of the Board, said the idea of "Champions Plaza" has been in the works since last fall -- before Alabama won 2011-12 national championships in football, gymnastics, women's golf and softball. Alabama athletic director Mal Moore was the brains behind it, Bryant Jr. said. The plaza, which would be located next to Sewell-Thomas Stadium, will provide recognition for the university's athletic programs and also feature tiered seating for 600 next to the stadium.
Just days after his high school graduation, Craig and Colleen loaded up a pick-up truck, trekked to Tuscaloosa and helped Hayes move into his dorm room. Pretty soon, Craig has promised, the Daniels will likely buy Hayes a car. For now, though, they believe it's better for him to walk around campus and concentrate on getting acclimated to college life. "We want him to get an education," Craig said. "There's been a lot of great athletes in Thomasville through the years, and you see them back here and they've had wasted lives. I don't want to see that happen to him. We're going to love him. We're going to support him."
With scholarship offers from just about every school in the country, many had considered Alabama the favorite to land Nkemdiche followed by Ole Miss, Clemson, Georgia and several others. One key selling point for the Rebels was that his brother, Denzel, is a freshman cornerback for the program. Nkemdiche's high school coach was a former player for the Crimson Tide -- coincidentally with Dabo Swinney. Clemson has put on the full court press for the five-star player for months and added Nkemdiche's good friends and Greyson teammates running back Wayne Gallman and cornerback David Kamara. While it appears the Tigers' efforts paid off, most experts still expect Nkemdiche to wait until Signing Day or later to make a final decision and actually sign.
There appears to be a roadblock, or at least a slowing of the train, toward a playoff at college football's highest level. What at one time appeared to be a certainty has been thrown into question after the latest BCS meetings in Chicago that ended Wednesday. There was no hand-holding and unity, according to news reports, when the 11 conference commissioners and Notre Dame athletic director Jack Swarbrick discussed what the playoff will look like. Instead, it seemed the meeting pushed a resolution a couple of steps back. On the record, those involved say progress was made this week, but that's not the way it feels.
McElwain's charge from CSU president Tony Frank and new athletic director Jack Graham, of course, is to turn the football program around and enhance the school's national profile. The Montana native's college coaching stops before Alabama included Eastern Washington, Montana State, Michigan State and Fresno State. "I feel genuinely involved with this as an important facet of this campus, not as the only important thing," McElwain said. "I've been at both ends of the spectrum, and I've seen what a quality product in athletics can be to help the entire campus. I was a faculty member. I was on a tenured track. I get it. "Since I've been on campus here, I've spoken to a couple of classes and really enjoyed that. So sitting over here in this office now, I feel like I'm one of them here. This place will sell itself with its excellence, from the faculty to the president, and with all the departments on campus. What we really need to do is expose the country to what a great place this is."
The University of Alabama battle cry seems more appropriate on a cool autumn afternoon rather than on a hot day in June. But the Crimson Tide indeed rolled during the first round of the 59th Sunnehanna Amateur Tournament for Champions. Alabama teammates Justin Thomas and Bobby Wyatt shared the Amateur lead after each shot a 5-under-par 65 on Thursday at the par-70 Sunnehanna Country Club course. "We have five people here and we’re great friends," said Wyatt of a contingent representing the Tide's Southeastern Conference champion and NCAA Division I runner-up golf squad at Sunnehanna. "We spend a lot of time together. We’re fortunate enough that we really enjoy each other. They’re my best friends and I enjoy seeing them play well."