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The Jumbo Package | 06.23.14

Your daily dose of Crimson Tide news and notes.

Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports

Another programming note - it seems to me that there are two types of college football news these days: 1) news related to the happenings in the O'Bannon case, and 2) basically nothing else.

So let's all make a deal.  I will include O'Bannon stuff in the Jumbo Package, but only as recap, not analysis.  And we all know that we've hashed out the pay-for-play issue to death, so maybe let's all agree to keep discussion in the comments focused on surface analysis of the news items presented, rather than delving back into that quagmire again.  Deal?

Big Ten commissioner Jim Delany takes stand at Ed O'Bannon trial - ESPN

"There wouldn't be a Rose Bowl if either they or we were operating in a very different wavelength in terms of paying players," Delany said.

Delany followed NCAA president Mark Emmert to the witness stand in a landmark antitrust suit brought by former UCLA basketball star Ed O'Bannon and others. They dispute the NCAA's contention that college sports would be thrown into turmoil if players win the right to be paid for the use of their names, images and likenesses in television broadcasts and videogames.

Like Emmert, he said college sports would be irreparably damaged in many ways if a century-old tradition is breached by payments.

"These games are owned by the institution, and the notion of paying athletes for participation in these games is foreign to the notion of amateurism," Delany said.

Good Lord, Jim. I was just complimenting you recently.  "The precious Rose Bowl would suffer" is your doomsday scenario?


Breaking down O'Bannon judge's four most important questions at trial -

Ultimately, both sides are trying to convince one person (as of now, until the appeals come): U.S. District Judge Claudia Wilken. It can be dangerous to make conclusions from questions by a judge during trial. But what Wilken asks sheds some light into her thinking and what's most relevant to her. Here are the four most important questions Wilken has asked so far:

This is a very interesting article, I think.  My non-legal opinion is that none of these questions are leaning in the NCAA's favor.

Ranking the SEC kick returners 2014: Christion Jones of Alabama is 1 - ESPN

1. Christion Jones, Alabama: How good is Jones? The SEC’s career leader in kickoff return touchdowns (Debose) is on this list and we’re ranking Jones ahead of him. It’s just plain scary to kick the ball in Jones’ direction as his ranking second in the SEC in both kickoff returns (28.7 yards per return) and punt returns (14.0 ypr), plus his three return touchdowns last season, would indicate.

'Ay, girl.  I heard you like punt returns.


Jalston Fowler has a big fan in former Alabama FB Le'Ron McClain |

"I remember just coming in college in the Mike Shula era and playing fullback, day in and day out being that physical guy," McClain said Saturday at his annual free youth football camp. "You've got to be the most physical player on the field. You get all the dirty work, hitting linebackers and safeties and everything."

McClain said he's liked what he's seen from senior Jalston Fowler, the player most likely to line up at fullback whenever the Crimson Tide rolls out its I-formation. Though Alabama didn't run the formation at A-Day, it provided glimpses during media viewing portions of spring practice.


Former Alabama RB Alvin Kamara now headed to one of Tide's biggest rivals |

After one season at Alabama, former top prospect Alvin Kamara is headed to one of the Crimson Tide's top rivals.

The running back confirmed the chatter on Twitter by announcing he'll play at Tennessee.


Steve Spurrier suggests Alabama would be just as good if Nick Saban worked fewer hours |

"I told Nick Saban one time, I said, 'Nick, you don't have to stay there until midnight and your teams would be just as good and win just as many,' " Spurrier said. "He said, 'If I could do it the way you do it, I would, but I don't feel comfortable unless I try to cover every base, every angle, be totally prepared.' I said, 'Well, that's probably why you do it.' When I come out there, I feel comfortable we are ready to play. We have our game plan in, going to call this, call that and so forth. Everybody is different as far as when they feel they are totally prepared."


'Roll Tide until I die,' Vinnie Sunseri representing Alabama in LSU country |

Vinnie Sunseri, a rookie safety with the New Orleans Saints, said he isn't shy about wearing Alabama garb around the Crescent City, a hotbed for LSU football. Sunseri spent three seasons with the Crimson Tide before the Saints selected him in the fifth round of the 2014 NFL Draft.

"I got to represent Alabama while I'm out in New Orleans," Sunseri said. "Getting heckled by all these LSU fans and all, but I'm 'Roll Tide' 'til I die. I love Alabama."