The Jumbo Package │02.25.14

Marvin Gentry-USA TODAY Sports

Your daily dose of Crimson Tide related news and notes

ESPN to give college football season an early start in 2014

ESPN is set to announce that the 2014 college football season will begin at its earliest point in 11 years, with Sam Houston State playing at Eastern Washington at 3:30 p.m. ET on Saturday, Aug. 23 in an event dubbed the "FCS Kickoff".

C.M. Newton: Leave Anthony Grant alone and he'll 'get it right' at Alabama | AL.com

"We're all instant gratification, we all want the hurry-up fix," Newton said in a speech to the Birmingham Tip-Off Club today. "If we leave this guy alone, Anthony Grant, leave him alone for a couple years, he'll get it right. He's a damn good coach. He knows what it takes to win. If I were his AD, I would leave him alone simply because I can put my head on my pillow each night and go to sleep knowing he isn't going to cheat and he'll have good discipline in his program."

For Alabama's Adrian Hubbard, interviews at Combine more important than times, measurables | AL.com

"I just need to let people know I’m not a selfish person, that I can get along with anyone," he said. "I’m a leader by example and I’m a tough guy and I’m very intelligent." Nawrocki wrote that Hubbard, a two-year starter who had no known off-field issues at Alabama, has "a quirky personality, inflated opinion of his ability and carries a sense of entitlement that could be difficult to manage and require a patient positional coach."

Men's college golf: Alabama takes early lead at Puerto Rico Classic.

The Crimson Tide have four players in the top 10, including: Cory Whitsett (T-2), Robby Shelton (T-2), Trey Mullinax (T-7) and Tom Lovelady (T-10). Purdue senior Adam Schenk leads the field through 18 holes after firing a 6-under 66. Alabama, which has won three straight times in Puerto Rico, is averaging rounds at 3.6 below par as a team this season.

Alabama's Deion Belue '100 percent better' heading into on-field drills at NFL Combine | AL.com

The first extended break from football helped Belue practice and prepare for Oklahoma, but it didn't get him totally back to speed. Ultimately, Belue was forced to watch the Crimson Tide fall to the Sooners from the sidelines, as the toe injury that bothered him throughout the season flared up at the worst possible time. Former Alabama CB Deion Belue at NFL Combine - Feb. 24, 2014 Former Alabama cornerback Deion Belue talks with reporters Sunday, Feb. 24, 2014, at the NFL Combine in Indianapolis. "It was very, very frustrating," Belue said Sunday. "All the time you prepared for it, and then you're a senior, so it's your last game. Guaranteed last game. So yeah, it was kind of hard on me.

The Blitz with Jeff Howe & Karen Guregian | Boston Herald

Should the Pats dip into the draft for a quarterback, which is an outside possibility, New England could be a landing spot given the familiarity of the coaches.

"I love the Patriots organization," McCarron said. "If I had the chance to go there and sit behind (Tom) Brady for however long and learn from one of the best to ever play the game, that would be an awesome experience." McCarron doesn't like to make comparisons in terms of which pro quarterback he's most like, but he spoke about being similar to Brady. "When it comes to similarities, from body build, to how we were talked about coming out of college, I think Tom Brady," McCarron said. "I think we play the game the same way. He still moves in the pocket pretty well to get away from blitzes. Everyone doubted his arm strength coming out. It's turned out pretty good so far."

Ravens met with linebackers Adrian Hubbard, Lamin Barrow - baltimoresun.com

Hubbard is a 6-foot-6, 257-pound outside linebacker from Alabama who started all but two games the last two seasons. He ran the 40-yard dash in 4.69 seconds and recorded a 38.5-inch vertical leap in combine testing. Hubbard is known for his ability to create leverage at the line of scrimmage and has excellent size.

He had 33 tackles and three sacks last season after recording six sacks and 10 tackles for losses as a sophomore. Hubbard said he emulates Ravens outside linebacker Courtney Upshaw, a fellow Alabama football alum.

NFL Combine: Linebackers Full Measurements - Pro Player Insiders

The 3rd Linebacker is from the forgotten position of ILB. CJ Mosley of Alabama is ranked as the #1 ILB in the draft, but still isn’t projected to go until the 15-20 range.

Wrapping up former Alabama QB AJ McCarron's trip to the 2014 NFL Combine | AL.com

2014 NFL Combine Live

Watch live as the DB's run their 40's and go through on the field drills.

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