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Jumbo Package: Friday, 27 February 2015

Your daily dose of mocking Auburn and LSU...

Levi Randolph is known for busting his ass and putting in hard work...his basketball game is pretty good too.
Levi Randolph is known for busting his ass and putting in hard work...his basketball game is pretty good too.
Kelly Lambert-USA TODAY Sports

Bad news first

Alabama point guard Ricky Tarrant out for the season | TuscaloosaNews.com

Alabama junior point guard Ricky Tarrant will miss the remainder of the season with a ruptured plantar fascia, the university announced Thursday afternoon.

Best wishes to Turnt, who we hope heals quickly and without incident this offseason from, what seems to be, a ridiculously painful injury. The Junior standout was having a great season. This link explains the pain that the injury creates and, worse, that the injury never resolves on its own: surgery is always required.

The Crimson White :: :: Alabama women's basketball falls 53-49 on senior night

Senior Sharin Rivers had to have crutches as she slowly made her way to her framed jersey. Tears started to roll down her face as she gazed up at her career highlights playing on the video screen. It was a sad yet joyful night for both her and fellow senior forward Briana Hutchen with Alabama losing at the end to Florida 53-49.

The Lady Tide lose two seniors off a very young, still growing team. And, as we say farewell to Rivers and Hutchen, we wish them the best going forward. Roll Tide.

TCU team doctor calls concussion policy 'a huge PR stunt' - CBSSports.com

He believes the policy doesn't amount to much more than a PR stunt. "That's one of our issues with the policy currently is it doesn't give a lot of teeth to anything," Kirk told TCU360. "It's a huge PR stunt in our opinion and it doesn't give a lot of teeth to anything, because nobody's going to be using the same equipment to measure so we feel like that puts us at risk."

Whether they are a PR ploy, expose physicians to increased liability, or are inconsistently applied, the concussion protocols are going to be a work in progress. I wouldn't just poo-poo them away and dismiss them in toto. This is a good first step, Doc. Let's hope this guy isn't indicative of the administrative and professional blow-back this commonsensical player safety measure receives.

Now, the good news

Dan Mullen (finally) signs contract extension through 2018

Mullen, 46-31 in six seasons in Starkville with five straight winning campaigns, is now locked down through the 2018 season. He’ll earn $4 million in 2015 and average $4.275 million over the life of the deal.

Great news here, as Alabama won't have to worry about a competent Mississippi State team for the next three seasons. Clowntown Mullen is locked-in, and the Bulldogs -like their counterparts in Oxford, overspent wildly to retain a buffoon in the head spot.

Levi Randolph Becomes Program's First Academic All-American - ROLLTIDE.COM

For the first time in program history, Alabama men's basketball has an Academic All-American. Senior guard Levi Randolph has been selected to the 2014-15 Capital One Academic All-America Second Team. ... "He has worked extremely hard from day one to achieve this goal and it's great to see him realize it. Levi epitomizes what the term student-athlete is all about."

Fantastic work, Levi. We are very proud of your achievements on and off the court: The Senior captain not only leads the Tide in scoring, but apparently GPA. Roll Damn Degree.

The Crimson White :: :: Coming up Clark

[Kaitlyn Clark] was named this week’s SEC Gymnast of the Week after winning the all-around competition in last week’s meet at The University of Georgia with a career best score of 39.625.

If you watched the meet, there were no surprises here. Clark dominated the 'Dawgs in winning first place in all-arounds. Her performance was so good last Saturday, it even overshadowed teammate Lauren Beers, who has made winning individual awards a thing this year.

INFOGRAPHIC: 2014 College Football TV Ratings | TexAgs

Someone posted this in a comment yesterday. It is definitely worth a gander. The Iron Bowl was the most watched game of the regular season. And, for what it's worth, an average Kentucky football game (KENTUCKY!!!) draws more viewers than Big Ten additions Rutgers and Maryland - combined. So much for cornering that Northeast/North Atlantic market, eh?

Let's troll our rivals, shall we?

LSU hit with NCAA sanctions over recruiting violations involving Alabama signee | AL.com

Womack initially signed a financial aid agreement with LSU last August, but later reneged and signed with Alabama in February. His decision to head to Tuscaloosa is believed to have led to hefty recruiting sanctions for LSU, according to The Baton Rouge Advocate. LSU is banned from signing early enrollees to financial aid agreements for the next two years, and has lost 10 percent of its recruiting evaluation days in 2015. The Tigers will be hardest hit in the spring, losing a reported 17 evaluation days.

LOL. The NCAA relaxed financial aid agreements that schools could enter into with prospective players. However, the NCAA was also clear that if the recruit did not ultimately sign, then such agreements constituted impermissible benefits and contact. The result is that schools who choose to enter into a pre-NSD agreement do so at their own peril. Stop me if you've heard this before: LSU did some dumb shit, even after Womack's dad told LSU that Matt was not fully committed.

Illegal man downfield penalty is misguided, some coaches say - ESPN

"I'd say that was a pretty important play in the game and our season," Malzahn said. "We were 3 yards downfield and it was a well executed play as far as the current rule was concerned."

"The refs don't even look for it," Stoops told USA Today. "It's kind of insane. It doesn't make any sense. ... When linemen are downfield, that's 'run' to us. It makes it virtually impossible for our guys to read run or pass."

Whining about the proposed rule change is coming from exactly the quarters you'd expect: Those who are cheating at every turn, e.g., Malzahn, Briles, Swinney, and other adherents. Compare Gus' quote (re: the 2013 Iron Bowl) with Bob Stoops' quote. Gus et al want the rule to just be enforced as-is and emphasize enforcement of it this season, stating that it only affects "a handful of plays." But, Stoops (and I'm sure Saban) make the point that those 6-8 plays (or, hell, even just one) are what lose you ball games. It is grossly unfair to give an offense free first downs by not monitoring the spot and chains, by hamstringing defenses ability to substitute, and it is triply unfair to rewrite the rules of the game by ignoring cheating. In any event, if it makes the Malzahns and Brileses of the world piss and moan, that can only mean that it is a good proposal. #FAU.

If a John Chavis defense and Texas A&M's air raid can coexist, look out - SBNation.com

With Chavis and the talent on campus, Aggie fans should know before 2016 is over whether the Wrecking Crew is a revitalized tradition or a sacrifice to Sumlin's brand of football.

I filed this under "good news," because frankly the two can never properly coexist. Quick, name the best statistical defense that an air raid team has ever, in its 15 years, had? 2005 Texas Tech...a Big Twelve South Runner-Up that went 10-3 and lost to Mike Shula. Air raid defenses can be good; they can be mobile, active and aggressive; they can be talented and send people to the pros, they will never, ever be the elite squads that guys like Chavis can mold at more traditional programs. #hot #take

Alabama notes

Former Alabama LB Freddie Roach to Join Nick Saban's Staff

Alabama will be adding another former player to its coaching staff for the 2015 season. According to BamaOnline, Freddie Roach is set to join Nick Saban’s staff in a player personnel role. Roach comes to Tuscaloosa from Mobile, where he spent two years at South Alabama as an assistant coach working with the defensive ends and linebackers.

Freddie has been cutting his chops in the D-league, and has now moved to an admin position at Alabama. It may not be at Alabama, but his career is progressing nicely and an on-field position at a P5 school is the next step.

SEC pre-spring position rankings: OL - SEC Blog - ESPN

5. Alabama: There is room for improvement here; the Tide were sixth in the SEC in rushing yards per game in 2014.

In yesterday's JP, the comment thread got highjacked with a discussion of offensive line depth chart and starters. Well, ESPN agrees with you, FWIW. Today's your day to sound off.

TCU Horned Frogs QB Trevone Boykin to undergo wrist surgery | FOX Sports

Alabama offensive coordinator Lane Kiffin and his father, Dallas Cowboys assistant coach Monte Kiffin, were on TCU's campus on Wednesday. Both were among a handful of coaches who visited the campus for an exchange of ideas on Wednesday. Patterson said when TCU was in the Mountain West, he rarely limited who he invited inside the facility, but has become more selective since joining the ranks of major conference programs.

This is the only relevant portion of the above link. It's interesting that Kiffin is visiting TCU for offensive pointers. Given that the Tide is looking to become more mobile at QB with future recruits, are more wrinkles upcoming for the Alabama offense?

Recruiting

4-star Mississippi defensive end Jeffery Simmons sees early playing time opportunity at Alabama | AL.com

Alabama is hunting defensive linemen in the 2016 class and presented its case to Simmons for early playing time. The Crimson Tide are heavy with seniors and junior draft prospects across this upcoming season's defensive line. "When I was talking to Coach Saban and Coach Bo, they were going to be losing four to five defensive linemen next year," Simmons said. "If I do come to 'Bama, I would be a big fill-in because they would need me to come off the edge and set the edge."

Sounds like Simmons is sold. The article makes it clear the Alabama staff knows the issues facing 2016 and are selling immediate playing time for impact guys.

5-star QB Jawon Pass has Alabama in top 2, glad Auburn 'didn't make me work and sell peanuts' | AL.com

Jawon Pass is one of the top quarterbacks in the country. Right now, the five-star recruit has Alabama and North Carolina in his top two, and at the moment is underwhelmed with Auburn.

As bad as Grantsketball is, at least a five-star recruit never publicly commented that he was afraid the understaffed hoops facilities were going to make him sell peanuts in the stand. LOL.

Finally

Super-cute clip of a fruit bat tucking into a banana is the sweetest thing you'll see today - Mirror Online

If you're having a bad day, this super-cute clip might cheer you up. It shows the moment an adorable fruit bat tucks into a banana after being rescued from netting late last week.

D'awwwwwww. It's so cute. Have a great weekend.