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The Jumbo Package │08.29.13

Your daily dose of Crimson Tide related links and quotes

Mike Ehrmann
Virginia Tech

Q & A With Roll Bama Roll - Gobbler Country

This week our Q & A series takes place with Josh Howard of SB Nation's Alabama Crimson Tide blog, Roll Bama Roll. Make sure to check it out. In this Q & A session, we discuss the dominance of Alabama, a potential switch by the Hokies to the SEC and the positional match ups between the two teams. Josh also made his prediction for this week's game. Also, if you want a peek at my answers to his questions, I've linked them here. So if you want the whole story from a Crimson Tide perspective, this is your best bet

Go check out Gobbler Country's responses and poke around their site for excellent info on the Hokies. We'll have more previews up later this morning.

Alabama football notebook: Tide studies Auburn to prepare for Hokies game | The Montgomery Advertiser |

Youthful line: The Hokies are in the midst of a youth revival and are going with true freshman Jonathan McLaughlin at left tackle. He’s a 6-foot-5, 313-pounder who was ranked the No. 69 offensive tackle in the country out of high school and then the No 3 tackle among prep school players the following year. "The type of kid he is, he’s a tough guy," coach Frank Beamer said; "He’ll give you the best effort he’s got. Scheme-wise, you’re just trying to help him a little bit. I don’t think we’ve ever had a freshman start at left tackle for us.

Xavier Dickson, Denzell Devall, Adrian Hubbard and Jeoffrey Pagan  just got a tingling sensation in special places...


Exit Poll: Only school that matches Alabama is Ohio State - NCAA Football - Sporting News

Woolfolk: The only school in the NCAA that can match Alabama in its superior coaching and even come close to its talent on the field is Ohio State.

Insert ::dismissive wanking motion:: That drivel above may be the dumbest thing you'll read all day and there's a slight chance you've read TET...tOSU may have an above average head coach (who still hasn't proven he can win consistently without Tim Tebow) but their depth chart doesn't even come close to comparing to Alabama's (at least not yet). The closest in the country is probably LSU.

CECIL HURT: The only foe Saban can’t beat is expectation: College Football 2013 |

There is one small pocket in the wide Alabama football world, though, in which Saban has not achieved success. He has tried, over and over, but he hasn’t reached his goal. He can’t stop people from talking about "repeating." Or "three-peating." Of millions of words that have been written this month, in the run-up to Alabama’s season, a solid 90 percent or more have "analyzed" the Crimson Tide’s chances at hoisting another crystal football.

I know the Dark Lord doesn't want to talk about three-peats and the like but I'm sorry, not sorry coach. We've tried to hold back the gump (like you could tell) but it's getting harder with each passing moment. Until I see this team fail with my own two eyes, I will believe they can and will win another National title this year.

Alabama WR Amari Cooper '95 percent' recovered from foot injury, ready to play through it (video) |

His goal for 2013 is to "have a better year than last year" because "I don't feel like I did a whole lot last year as far as my expectations." "Now I'll be starting the first game this year. I didn't start the first game last year," Cooper said. "We'll see if I have a better year than last year."

Goodness gracious...If Amari isn't happy with his 2012 performance what will 2013 look like? I know it's typical for players to dismiss prior accomplishments but I take Amari at his word — he wants to get better.

Alabama RB Derrick Henry 'a good sport' about changing to No. 21 for special teams purposes |

"Too many guys in the same single-digit numbers. You can't operate," Alabama coach Nick Saban said during his Wednesday press conference. "You can't have two guys in the game at the same time with the same number on. "You have to do it by seniority and he was a good sport about being willing to change and doing whatever he had to do for the team."

How does Alabama end up with so many unselfish players like Julio, Ingram, Trent, AJ, Barrett, Yeldon, Cooper and now Henry? I'm sure other teams have hard working men who will do anything to help the team win but Alabama seems to be full of elite talent that in most cases would be prima donna's. Yet they come to Alabama and accept lesser roles even though they would be a featured player on any other roster.

IMO, this is the beauty behind Saban's recruiting success.

Alabama OL Arie Kouandjio's excitement builds after long road back from knee injuries |

"I'm very excited," Kouandjio said. "I've been waiting on this day for a very long time." He certainly has. The fourth-year junior who has battled back from multiple knee surgeries will make his first career start Saturday against Virginia Tech. He'll be at left guard -- right next to his younger brother, left tackle Cyrus Kouandjio. Cyrus called it nothing short of a "blessing." "It’s crazy because I know he’ll break his back trying to help me out and I’ll do the same for him," Cyrus said. "I’m looking forward to it."

We talk a lot about the potential struggles at O-line but we sometimes forget that these guys are playing for more than gridiron glory. Arie is playing to prove something to himself, that his life wasn't over after two knee surgeries. As someone who has had to make major changes in his own personal life to make his future brighter I admire Arie's determination and hope only the best for the young man.