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The Jumbo Package: 12-17-10

Tide notes: Bowl preparation begins; who replaces Mark Barron? |

"I'm not sure that there is any other solution to moving guys around or they haven't had reps at that position, taking a corner and playing him at safety and all that kind of stuff," Saban said. "I just don't see where that is going to benefit us, especially with the depth issues that we have with B.J. Scott being out.

"We're sort of thin all the way around in the back end. Those guys have experience, though, and they've played some, especially Will Lowery."

'Bama returns with Iron Bowl loss fresh on minds -

"I went back home and where I'm from (Lewisburg, Tenn.) There's not too much to do except watch TV," Hightower said. "The Auburn game came on a couple of times and I watched that and I saw the mistakes we made and us giving up, not necessarily mentally but toughness, letting them get around and do things.

"I feel like that's always going to be in the back of our minds until we get it back next year," he said.

Three Crimson Tide Players Earn Freshman All-America Honors -

D.J. Fluker, Dee Milliner and C.J. Mosley have all garnered first-team Freshman All-America honors after outstanding seasons for the Alabama Crimson Tide in 2010.

The honors were released by, and Phil Steele. Fluker was a first-team pick by while Milliner was first-team selection by Phil Steele, and Mosley was a first-team choice by and and a second-team choice by Phil Steele.

Douglas trades Rocky Top for Roll Tide - SEC Blog - ESPN

Douglas' signing with Alabama won't be a popular decision with Tennessee fans. He was the Vols' most promising offensive lineman when Derek Dooley took over for Lane Kiffin following the 2009 season. What's more, he was a Tennessee legacy. Both of his parents were former Tennessee athletes. His father, David, was an offensive lineman on the Vols' 1985 SEC championship team and later played in the NFL. His mother, Karla Horton Douglas, was the starting center on the Lady Vols' 1987 national championship basketball team.

NFL labor issues could affect Tide's 2011 season |

UA coach Nick Saban acknowledged that labor unrest isn't something to be ignored when it comes to underclassmen making a life-altering decision.

"I think this year is different. With the labor situation and the strike coming up, it really could affect how much a guy can develop this year if there is no minicamp, there is no training camp," Saban said. "It would be much more difficult for guys to learn a system and make an impact. But at the end of the day it really comes down to what is in a player's heart, for what he wants to do. There is tremendous value in guys staying in school and getting an education.

"Typically, if guys are first-round picks, I tell them I support them going out for the draft. But with the unknowns this year, I've kind of reduced that to guys that are a top 15 pick or that they don't have a chance to move up in the future."

Alabama's Preston Dial coming home for Senior Bowl |

One of Preston Dial's fondest Senior Bowl memories is sitting on his mother's shoulders, trying to get an autograph from former Alabama quarterback Jay Barker.

"I probably about broke her neck trying to get to Jay Barker," laughed Dial, a Mobile native who estimated this year's game will be the 19th Senior Bowl he has attended.

Alabama coach Nick Saban challenges credibility of sourced reports; addresses NFL draft |

Saban expressed frustration with several reports concerning potential coaching moves. Those stories also referenced attempts to reach Saban, though an Alabama spokesman said none were made.

"A source close to the situation said something that is totally invalid," Saban said in mocking the reports. "Furthermore, they say 'nobody was available for comment' when nobody tried to get a comment. Nobody called. Nobody asked. Nobody said, 'Are you available?' Coach Saban wasn't available for comment? Nobody called or asked. How do you know I wasn't available? What is 'a source close'? When you ask me a question, I can't wait to answer one like that. I'll say, 'A source close said.'"

Woodson feels at home with Crimson Tide |

Danny Woodson had a big day at last Saturday's Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Classic in a 24-17 win.

The 6-foot-2, 200-pound wide receiver led Alabama with seven receptions for 72 yards and added the game-tying 2-point conversion late in the fourth quarter.

Q: I've heard that's one thing (Alabama coach Nick) Saban does in recruiting, he doesn't talk negatively about other schools. Is that true?


A: Yes, sir. He's gonna be straight-up with you. He's going to tell you, even though it may hurt your feelings, but you're gonna work to that potential and get better.