How will you remember AJ McCarron's time at the Capstone?
In 2009, AJ was a scrawny kid out of St. Paul's Episcopal in Mobile, AL with a big flop of hair and only a weeping Jesus gracing his chest. 9,019 yards and 77 passing TDs later, he has 3 National Championship rings (2009-10 as a redshirt freshman, 2011-12, 2012-13), a beautiful new bride, and a crapload more tattoos.
His first year, he took a redshirt while learning under future SEC Network stalwart Greg McElroy who guided the team back to the Crystal Football Promised Land. The following season, he served as McElroy's back-up seeing time in all 13 games, eight of which were at the quarterback position. He was also the primary holder on field goals and extra point attempts.
2011 presented a quarterback controversy in which he battled former 5-star Phillip Sims through spring and fall and into the first game of the season against Kent State. Despite some rocky stats, he was clearly the better choice of the two and led the Tide to #14.
Following up a National Championship is no easy feat but AJ pulled off the Back-to-Back with a satisfying win over top-ranked Notre Dame. It would take a miracle to stop Bama from Back-to-Back-to-Back Championships.
His 30 TD passes in 2012 set the school record and he accomplished the feat while playing through shoulder and knee injuries. He set the Alabama career record for passing yards eclipsing John Parker Wilson by a whopping 1,095 yards. He is tops in Alabama career passing percentage (66.9%), and his 77 TDs are 30 more than #2 JPW.
AJ finished his Alabama career with a 36-4 record in 40 career starts with all four losses coming to opponents ranked in the top 15.
In 2013, he won the Maxwell Award, the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award and finishing second in the Heisman Trophy voting. He was drafted in the fifth round by the Cincinnati Bengals.
As team captain, his hand and feet prints will forever be enshrined at the base of Denny Chimes.
All the People Magazine aside, off the field AJ McCarron carries himself as a good person who truly cares about others before himself. He is a leader, devout in his beliefs, and a exemplary ambassador of the University of Alabama. ROLL TIDE!