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The Jumbo Package | 09.24.14

Your daily dose of Crimson Tide news and notes.

Kevin C. Cox

Blake Sims' performance vs. Florida now historic after stat correction gives Tide QB program record |

Three days after he threw for 445 yards and four touchdowns in the Crimson Tide's 42-21 victory over Florida, Sims was retroactively credited with 27 more rushing yards than the 12 he had in Saturday's stat book. That gave him 39 for the day and 484 total, putting him at No. 1 in program history for most yards in a single game.

Here's what happened: On his second-quarter fumble, Sims was inaccurately docked 33 rushing yards -- the distance between the line of scrimmage (Florida's 32-yard line) and where Florida ultimately finished with it (Alabama's 35). Sims, though, should only have been docked 6 -- the distance between the line of scrimmage and where it was recovered (Florida's 38).


This is cool and all, and it certainly seems that Sims by rights deserves the record, but it just feels weird to award someone an "all-time in school history" record on a Tuesday, three days after the game is played.

Blake Sims, Amari Cooper among Alabama's players of the week against Florida |

Sims completed 23 of 33 passes for 445 yards, second-most in school history. His 484 total yards was a school record. Sims passed for four touchdowns and ran for one. Cooper had 10 catches for a career-high 201 yards and three touchdown catches. He now owns Alabama's career record with 20 touchdown catches.  It was Cooper's school record-setting sixth straight 100-yard receiving game.

Running back Derrick Henry and left guard Arie Kouandjio were also honored. Henry ran 20 times for 111 yards and a touchdown. Kouandjio graded out the highest on the offensive line and had no sacks, no penalties and allowed no quarterback pressures.

For the first time in school history, Alabama had a 400-yard passer, 200-yard receiver and 100-yard rusher.

SEC Heisman watch: Week 4 - ESPN

Stats are great to look at, but you know what's even prettier? That grown-man performance in Tuscaloosa against Florida's defense. Now, let's not kid ourselves and think this is the same ol' elite Florida defense the league has grown accustomed to, but this defense has arguably the nation's best cornerback in Vernon Hargreaves. Cooper faced his toughest test yet and might have had his best performance of the season.

What exactly did this magnificent football specimen do in front of the entire country? Well, how about 10 catches for 201 yards and three touchdowns, including a 79-yarder in which Florida's defense somehow lost him. Florida tried different ways to contain Cooper and failed more often than not. Hargreaves did what he could, and it wasn't enough. Just check out that fade to the end zone where Cooper mossed Hargreaves, who couldn't have been in better position, for a touchdown.

At this rate, there's no way Cooper won't be traveling to New York for the Heisman ceremony in December. The kid is too good, too talented and is on pace to get far too many catches (129), yards (1,965) and touchdowns (15) not to party in the city that never sleeps in early December.

Alabama practice report: Updating Blake Sims' status as Tide eases into bye week |

A few receivers weren't spotted practicing. Amari Cooper was suited up but watched the drills from the side. Christion Jones did the same and DeAndrew White wasn't spotted at all. This is more than likely part of the bye-week plan to rest the playmakers.

Freshman Cam Sims and sophomore Chris Black led the lines during receiving drills.

Running back T.J. Yeldon also appeared to be taking it slow on the far side of the field.

WR DeAndrew White among Alabama players limited at practice during bye week |

Defensive backs Jarrick Williams (foot) and Eddie Jackson(quadriceps), neither of whom played against Florida, are back "full tilt" at practice, Saban said. Williams hasn't played since the season opener while Jackson has played in two games.

"They're trying to get back into the swing of things and back into shape and do things that they have to do to be able to go out there and react and play the way they can play," Saban said. "This is a good week for them to try to be able to do that."

'Beat up like a drum' hiring Lane Kiffin, Nick Saban says relationship has 'never been bad' |

Their personalities -- on the surface, at least -- seem to differ, but the communication between the two, Saban said during a loud, energetic series of answers at his Tuesday press conference, has never wavered.

"It's never been bad," Saban said. "Whoever said it was bad, so why does it need to get better? I thought something had to be bad before it needed to get better. So why do you ask me has it gotten better? That assumes it was bad, that it was worse at one time.

"So now we're in love, we fell out of love and now we're back in love."

Saban and Kiffin, sitting in a tree...

SEC has chance to get two into playoff - ESPN

What has the SEC commissioner so happy? Well, just take a look at the most recent top 25 and all the chaos erupting around him in college football. The SEC leads all conferences with eight representatives in the top 25. Four of those teams are ranked inside the top 10: Alabama (three), Auburn (five), Texas A&M (six) and Ole Miss (10). So can the SEC realistically get two teams into the College Football Playoff? For now, that answer has to be yes.

While the rest of the Power 5 conferences -- ACC, Big 12, Big Ten and Pac-12 -- have lost steam or suffered losses to start the year, the SEC is sitting very pretty in the national rankings. It also helps that five of the SEC's eight ranked teams are unbeaten.

Well, that didn't take long.  Still way too early to be talking scenarios like this, but if you have the strength to withstand it, the cache of being in the SEC west has never been higher.

Ole Miss coach Hugh Freeze won't 'jump the gun' to hype highly anticipated Alabama game |

"If you guys would quit talking about it, it would help. I don't talk about it," Freeze said. "I just can't for the life of me understand why people would jump the gun. My mind would make me believe anything, usually. Because of all of the stuff I hear, everyday, I'm certainly trying to make sure our kids stay within the moment and stay on task today and tomorrow, which leads to Saturday against the University of Memphis."

Earlier this month, ESPN producer Lee Fitting said the network was considering Oxford as its site for its Oct. 4 live taping of "College GameDay." Also on the table was Auburn for the Tigers' game against LSU, but Fitting indicated Alabama-Ole Miss had the edge because the traveling show has never aired from The Grove.

SEC suspends Mississippi State OL Dillon Day for Texas A&M game -

Upon review of game video from the contest between LSU and Mississippi State on Sept. 20 in Baton Rouge, La., SEC Commissioner Mike Slive has announced that Mississippi State senior center Dillon Day is suspended for the Bulldog's next game, which is scheduled for Oct. 4 in Starkville.

This action is the result of multiple flagrant and unsportsmanlike acts during the game, as well as previous disciplinary action for similar behavior.

This action is taken in accordance with Southeastern Conference Constitution, Article 4.4.2 (d) which states that a student-athlete may be suspended if it is determined that the student-athlete has committed a flagrant or unsportsmanlike act.

In case you missed my mini rant on Monday, here is the film of the acts in question (not really in question, truthfully).  After video starting making rounds, Day released an apology letter wherein he insisted that both of the stomps were unintended and entirely accidental.  Did this thug's head coach respond with swift reproach and punishment?  No.  He did nothing.  Since such flagrant bush league tactics simply cannot be tolerated, the SEC stepped up and suspended Day for one game.  I think that punishment is arguably sufficient, but definitely the bare minimum that would be acceptable, given the circumstances.

So, to borrow an old bit from Stephen Colbert, I offer a tip of the hat to the SEC for doing the right thing here, and I offer a wag of the finger to Dan Mullen, who has managed to erase any respect I might have had for him in remarkably quick fashion.  And if that last sentence seems a bit too harsh, I would like to direct your attention to Mullen's response to the SEC's suspension of Day (skip to the 3 minute mark).

Disappointing and embarrassing.


Nick Saban Tuesday press conference

Tuesday practice (linebackers, defensive linemen, tight ends)

Defensive backs work on forcing fumbles

Reggie Ragland (linebackers) interview

Arie Kouandjio (offensive lineman) interview

Derrick Henry (running back) interview