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Jumbo Package: Friday, 24 April 2015

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Recruiting buzz in hoops, diamond updates, Braxton watch continues, and the NCAA is tinkering again.

Terrance Ferguson on the Tide's radar.
Terrance Ferguson on the Tide's radar.
Kelly Kline/Under Armour

Alabama notes

Mikey White Named to Brooks Wallace Award Watch List - ROLLTIDE.COM - University of Alabama Official Athletic Site

White has started all 40 games for the Tide this season and has started every game of his career at shortstop since coming to Tuscaloosa. He leads the Crimson Tide in runs (37), doubles (13), triples (6), slugging percentage (.600) and on-base percentage (.444), while registering 127 assists from the shortstop position.

Phenomenal player and easily the heart and soul of the Tide baseball program. Well done, Mikey.

The Crimson White :: :: ​Alabama softball’s late-inning rally falls short in 3-2 loss to Tennessee

"As good as we hit in Auburn is as bad as we hit tonight," Alabama coach Patrick Murphy said. "It’s the complete opposite, and it’s unfortunate that sometimes it happens, but man, not one person wanted to be the hero. That drives me nuts."

Watching this one last night was infuriating. Pat Murphy was not particularly pleased either.

Alabama coach Avery Johnson visits nation's No. 6 prospect Terrance Ferguson | AL.com

Most of his 247Sports Crystal ball reports predict Kansas, but 247Sports Director of Basketball Scouting Jerry Meyer put in a crystal ball pick for Alabama on Thursday.

There is the slimmest of shots for the 6'7" one-and-done prospect. Looking at the players Coach Johnson is recruiting, Alabama is definitely moving towards a longer, more athletic team, especially at the guard spots -- think Villanova or Kansas.

Braxton watch: Day umpteen

Ohio State Football: There's more smoke around the Braxton Miller-Alabama rumors | FOX Sports

We're not saying Saban is lying about his knowledge of "such rumors," necessarily. We're just saying there's more smoke here, and usually behind smoke is at least some truth.

Hot takes here! FWIW, I still don't think it happens. Then again, it may not be the worst thing if it doesn't. I've not seen a guy polarize a fan base like this since Jonathan Taylor He Who Shall Not Be Named.

Trey DePriest explains Braxton Miller's multiple visits to Alabama | AL.com

While DePriest said he talks to Miller almost every day, he said the two have not spoken about whether Miller is thinking about transferring, whether it be to Alabama or another school.

Three trips to Alabama for Miller, and they were all for rehab. Trey doesn't even couch his words in noncommittal terms. That should be your tell that this saga is probably done. Hooray, offseason!

Shenanigans

Scrapped UAB football program would actually *make* money, say experts - SBNation.com

"We find the three sports in question did not cost the university anywhere near the $3.75 million indicated on UAB's accounting statements. Instead, we conclude the three sports were effectively break-even to slightly positive."

UAB doesn't just have a BoT problem, it has a Ray Watts problem. This is the world's most disgusting onion, with every peeled layer revealing increasing degrees of rot inside the satellite campus. But, to believe the alleged conspiracy that this is a Tuscaloosa-initiated hit requires believing that Baby Bear and the FOGs have enough clout to sway a 17-person Board who then in turn hire a UAB president to actively sabotage his own institution. Gross incompetence I believe. That many members of the Board care passionately about Alabama football and vote that way is beyond doubt. That there is a massive conspiracy? Not seeing it. Our Blazer friends would be well-served to heed Occam's razor on this one.

NCAA is so helpful

SEC wants transparency with cost-of-attendance payments, hopes issue is discussed again nationally | AL.com

Under the league's proposal, schools would be required to regularly file reports to the NCAA related to any unusual expenses that it may be covering for an athlete.

This is a fascinating look at the finances and (lack of) transparency in the cost of attendance mandate coming next fall, complete with numbers for each institution. BTW: Alabama ranks at the bottom of extra cash for athletes. And, hey, why not? The REC already has them taken care of. It will not surprise you to know that Auburn and Tennessee are way up at the top of the list. For some reason, though, the NCAA voted against transparency for aberrant expenses which may crop up. Welcome to the booster cash-grab era, folks.

Emmert says NCAA will put satellite camps on top of list for oversight committee | CollegeFootballTalk

NCAA president Mark Emmert said the football rules oversight committee will have the issue “on top of their list” when they get together later this year and said “I think they have to address it nationally.”

I absolutely agree with Emmert on this one: It will have to be done nationally. It's not a matter of the SEC and ACC opening up their rules to also exploit the loophole; it's a matter of closing the thing. The Big Ten will be furious, naturally. But, their concerns don't phase me since Delany is still trying to foist the next ridiculous piece of legislation on the country.

Emmert: Freshman ineligibility problematic, worth debating - Yahoo Sports

''The real question we need to address: Are students sufficiently serious about being students as well as athletes and are they sufficiently prepared to be successful as a student as well as an athlete?'' Emmert said.

Spoiler: You can do both. The fact the Big Ten's proposal for this problematic POS only addresses football and basketball only tells you what their real bottom line is. I assure you, baseball, hockey, track and field, softball, gymnastics, volleyball, wrestling, underwater tiddlywinks all put in the same hours, face the same schedule-juggling, have the same academic requirements, yet are utterly ignored. This is about creating a competitive imbalance inuring to the Rust Belt's favor for the revenue sports.

Finally

Spend three minutes of your day watching this cool clip on the Tsar Bomba, the largest man-made explosion in the history of the world. The blast from Tsar damaged windows a thousand miles away in Finland and Norway, the fireball could be seen for 500 miles, and everything in a 22-mile radius was completely obliterated. As a child of the 80s, nuclear blasts were the stuff of nightmares and yet eerily beautiful.