The Jumbo Package │05.15.14

Stacy Revere

Your daily dose of Crimson Tide related links and quotes

Chart helps explain why college football fans are anti-union - SBNation.com

Typically, Republicans are against unions, and college football is one of the most "Republican" sports in the country. That makes sense, considering the sport is most popular in the South and the rural Midwest — areas that generally vote Republican. College football is a more conservative sport than baseball, whose own unionization followed a similar path.

What's ironic is that the desire to keep college football the same has actually shifted political ideologies in some ways. Republicans generally favor free market systems, but the O'Bannon and Kessler lawsuits — which many college football fans oppose — are proposing much more free market systems than the current one. A free market system could also enable schools to use their own revenues to help pay players, rather than using tax-funded Pell grants.

What's that you say? There's hypocrisy in people's political views??? I am Jack's complete lack of surprise. 

Breaking down Alabama's latest APR scores: Tide mostly above average in SEC | AL.com

All 21 of Alabama's varsity sports scored well above the national cut-off standard of 930. Men's golf, women's tennis and women's golf -- all of which were honored with NCAA public recognition awards last week -- notched perfect scores of 1,000.

Alabama's multi-year football score dropped three points to 975, but that total ranked third in the SEC behind South Carolina and Missouri. Alabama's lowest-scoring sport was women's indoor and outdoor track (969) but even that tally ranked in the top half of the SEC.

Alabama football players are smarter than those Vandy nerds, PAAWWLLLL.

Nick Saban explains what he would expect from his Alabama players if Tide had openly gay player | AL.com

"I would expect everybody to be very respectful of what is private for most people and treat that person with dignity and respect and respect them for being a good teammate and being a part of our team and doing the things that require them to be a good person on our team," Saban said. "I can't speak for everybody, but that's what would be my expectation for the people that we control in our organization and on our team."

Okay, I said months ago that I didn't want to talk about this topic on RBR because it wasn't relevant to Alabama, but with Nick Saban's comments yesterday that is no longer the case. Here's the thing though, this isn't an earth shattering statement by Saban. Of course he's going to say he'd expect his players to treat an openly gay player with respect. I don't doubt for a second that he meant what he said, it's just that this is exactly what you'd expect a man in his position to say.

That said...

Michael Sam to star in documentary series on Oprah Winfrey Network - Outsports

"Michael is focused on football and making the St. Louis Rams team," said Howard Bragman, Sam's publicist and one of the show's producers. "We're going to work with the Rams organization to make sure the show doesn't interfere with his primary goal."

My general feeling about all this is that if Sam really wants to be judged just as a football player, which is what he says in this commercial,  then doing stuff like a TV show about him being a gay football player kind of voids out that statement. So, he needs to pick a narrative. Either be an outspoken openly gay football player, which is perfectly fine or take the Jackie Robinson path and just be the best football player you can be. You can be both, if you want, but don't say one thing and do something else. 

Also, he's a 7th round pick and like undrafted free agents, 7th round picks aren't generally expected to make the team.  So I hope this TV show doesn't  put any undo pressure on the Rams to keep him on the team if he isn't good enough to actually make the team. Cause that's not fair to the other guys who are trying to make the team who just want to be judged as football players.....

Nick Saban on Alabama's QB competition: Don't forget about Blake Sims, Cooper Bateman | AL.com

"Jacob's certainly a part of that competition, but Blake Sims did a good job during the spring," Saban said. "As I said before, we were a little disappointed, he was a little disappointed in the way he played in the A-Day game. We didn't really feature what he could do."

"Cooper Bateman is still in the competition," Saban said. "He did a pretty good job in the A-Day game for a young player. So there's a lot of competition at the position.

It's obvious Saban saw something in Sims during Spring practice, but it's also quite evident Sims didn't wow the staff in the A-Day game. Maybe Kiffin didn't feature his abilities correctly, which throws up some minor red flags regarding Kiffin, but Sims should be able to make accurate throws and run the offense without having to use his legs. 

USC and Alabama reportedly mulling football game in 2016 - Los Angeles Times

Alabama Coach Nick Saban also said Wednesday nothing was official. "Yeah, we're always looking," Saban told reporters prior to a round of golf with Rocco Mediate in the Regions Tradition pro-am at Shoal Creek. "But not anything I can share with you right now. I don't think we want to create speculation."

USC would be at full strength by 2016 but to anyone who thinks this possible match up is linked to Kiffin, don't worry, he won't even be on the Bama staff in '16...

Women's Tennis set for NCAA Round of 16 Matchup with Notre Dame - ROLLTIDE.COM 

The No. 2 seed Alabama women's tennis team continues NCAA tournament play on Thursday when it takes on Notre Dame in the round of 16 at 8 a.m. CT.

Notre Dame (18-9) upset 15th-seeded Northwestern, 4-3, in the second round to earn a trip to Athens after beating DePaul, 4-0, in the first round. The Fighting Irish have advanced to the tournament in 19 of the last 20 seasons, including the last 17 straight. Notre Dame is making its 10th appearance in the round of 16.

Notre Dame, huh?

Lacy-spin1-1-7-13_medium

/will never not be awesome

No. 19 Alabama Baseball host No. 16 Mississippi State to Wrap up Regular Season - ROLLTIDE.COM 

No. 19 Alabama Crimson Tide (33-19, 14-12) will host the No. 16 ranked Mississippi State Bulldogs (33-19, 16-11 SEC) in the final regular season series of the 2014 campaign. The three-game Southeastern Conference series against the Bulldogs begins on Thursday night, with first pitch scheduled for 6:35 p.m. CT from Sewell-Thomas Stadium. Game two of the series will begin at 6 p.m. CT on Friday, and the series wraps up on Saturday with a 3 p.m. CT start.

Former FGCU guard Varidel's charmed journey rolls on

"I'll be a shooter probably coming off the bench," Varidel said. "I'll do pretty much what I did at FGCU, maybe be used more coming off screens to stretch the defense. Because if I get open, it's going in."

But the 6-foot-3 fitness fanatic said his knees are in good shape again after receiving a second plasma injection in December and spending the whole spring rehabilitating. "It was pretty painful," Varidel said of playing last fall after what he said was a first plasma injection last May that worsened rather than helped his knees. "The doctor had no idea what it was. I had to sit out the whole summer. That was the really frustrating part. "We decided (in December) it was smarter to stop and get one more injection and take it really seriously for the rehabilitation. I've been playing with no constraints for about 6-7 weeks now."

This gives us a little insight on how Varidel expects to be used in the Bama offense. Also, it seems like his injury was chronic knee pain, which can be debilitating to any athlete, especially basketball players. Hopefully resting his knee for almost a year is enough to get him through the entire season.

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