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The Jumbo Package | 03.11.14

Your daily dose of Crimson Tide news and notes.


Breaking down the reshuffled Alabama secondary as young talent steps forward this spring |

Alabama had six different players start games at cornerback in 2013 and just three in the 2012 national title run. Last year's defense ranked No. 26 in pass-efficiency (116.84), while the 2012 group was seventh (103.7)

Former Alabama O-lineman Kellen Williams calls in to Paul Finebaum Show to defend Nick Saban |

Coach Saban really prepped us for spread teams," said Williams, who spent five years at Alabama mostly as a reserve. "I was an offensive lineman so I wasn't in on the defensive installation meetings when we started game-planning people but I know for a fact that he has those guys for prepped for spread teams.

"I don't think we necessarily really struggled with spread teams. We struggle with spread teams that had athletes like (Nick) Marshall over in Auburn and (Johnny) Manziel just to name a few."


"I think he's just lobbying for the no-huddle offense to be kind of cut out but then again he also game-planned for it," Williams said. "He knows better than anyone in the country how to stop it. Obviously, the Oklahoma game and Auburn games weren't just on him. I was a senior and it was kind of on us as well."

Oh, good grief.  This is the opposite of helping.  He starts off by referring to "spread teams" even though spread formations are not even remotely in this discussion.  Then he doubles down on this misguided tirade by saying that Saban is lobbying to eliminate the no huddle.  Reading this interview, I had a slow motion "NOOOOOOO" moment.  This is just about as bad of a "defense" of the 10-second rule as could ever possibly be constructed.  I know we have some people that read this site that are close to the program (perhaps even in the athletic department).  If you are one of these people, do the cause a favor and get this article in the hands of people in the program.  Develop some decent talking points, and for the love of God, shut up "defenders" that don't know the script.

College Football Playoff: Could a mid-major team ever make it? - College Football - Stewart Mandel -

No team from outside the six former BCS automatic-qualifying conferences ever reached the national championship game under the old system, though Andy Dalton-led TCU came close in 2010, finishing 12-0 and No. 3 in the final rankings. In theory, adding two more spots to the field should provide more opportunity for football's little guys. In the new format, however, those teams may be more, not less, marginalized.

For one thing, conference realignment has dramatically altered the competitive landscape in the four years since the 2010 Horned Frogs came one Auburn or Oregon loss away from playing for the crystal trophy. TCU has moved up to a power conference. So has two-time BCS participant Utah. Boise State, which completed undefeated seasons with BCS bowl victories in '06 and '09, is the last of the three recent mid-major darlings that still plays outside the power conferences. The perceived gap between the haves and the have-nots has grown wider.

Alabama loss 'probably the worst half' of Mike Anderson's career, Arkansas coach burned the tape |

The shooting improved to 44 percent after halftime, but Alabama expanded its lead to a wide as 27 points. The Hogs were outscored 42-6 in the paint and took more than half of their shots from 3-point range. They settled on a 83-58 final score, but Anderson wasn't going back to watch it.

The game film? "We burned it," he said.

Comeback in the works? Former Alabama LB Rolando McClain reportedly serious about it |

According to a Monday report from the Carroll County (Md.) Times, which cites an anonymous source, McClain has been telling people close to him that he plans to return to the NFL in 2014. McClain, at the age of 23, retired in May shortly after an arrest in his hometown Decatur on charges of disorderly conduct and resisting arrest.

Former Alabama OL Mike Johnson receives 1-year contract extension with Atlanta Falcons |