Happy Wednesday of Ole Miss week, folks. Three more days before two well-regarded teams get a better idea of what they really have this season. Mid-week is always a little light on news, but here are a few links for your perusal:
Alabama right tackle Dominick Jackson was back with the first-team offensive line during the portion of Tuesday's practice open to the media. Brandon Greene worked with the first-team during the open periods of practice Monday.
The right tackle position is something to keep an eye on. While I doubt Jackson gets relegated to the bench over one game, the fact that Greene was getting first-team reps was telling. Time to step it up, son.
"Obviously when you're scoring 75 points a game, you've got a dynamic offense in a lot of ways," Alabama coach Nick Saban said in his Monday news conference. "They've got a lot of good players and a good scheme. They do a good job of executing, and they play fast. "They lead the nation in a lot of categories when it comes to offense."
While some of this should be tempered with the knowledge that Alabama's previous opponent was coming off a 70-point output, the fact that Chad Kelly seems to have an excellent grasp on the offense is concerning. The kid has plenty of talent as a former consensus four-star recruit plus the blood-line as the nephew of two former NFL players including Hall of Fame QB Jim Kelly. If Ole Miss is going to get elite play from that position, their starting lineup is absolutely good enough to win a national title. Depth is another matter, which usually comes home to roost at some point in SEC play. Probably won't matter much on Saturday, though.
"I don't really try to think about last year," said star running back Derrick Henry. "My focus is on this year and how we can be better than last year in what we do this year. Try to focus this week on preparing right."
The idea of revenge is overstated in my opinion. The reason Saban does well in "revenge" games is because he obsesses over the matchup issues that the opponent was able to exploit and works to fix them.
The walk-on from Syracuse got two carries and rushed for 9 yards near the end of his team's 37-10 victory over Middle Tennessee State University at Bryant-Denny Stadium in Tuscaloosa. It's no small measure he got in considering Gore sits on the depth chart behind Derrick Henry, Kenyan Drake and five-star freshman running back Damian Harris. Gore arrived in Tuscaloosa as an invited walk-on after playing at Coffeyville (Kan.) Community College, and before that, Milford Academy.
Great story that we really haven't covered as well as we should have. Coming out of high school, Gore had only a couple of mid-major offers and failed to qualify academically for those. After two years at two different junior colleges, he walks on at Alabama and gets to play in the home opener. I thought he looked good, too- runs hard and seems motivated. He may well be a solid fourth RB.
Neil Patrick Harris was Big Al at Alabama's season opener against Wisconsin in Dallas. No, really. The multi-talented actor strolled the sidelines and stands as the Crimson Tide mascot, unbeknownst to a couple he'd surprise later on his show.
Doogie Howser Barney Stinson wears Big Al pajamas.
Every fall weekend, we would slide into a deep, predictable funk. We wanted to watch football—real football. At some point before each weekend, a depressing series of phone calls would commence among southern expats over the scarcity and quality of the football options on New York City television. "Holy Cross versus Harvard? Can you believe it? My high school played better football."
Great read discussing college football in the South.
And, a few from the enemy's perspective:
That's it for today, folks. May the rest of your week be prosperous and may those of you on Eastern time get plenty of rest before Saturday night. Roll Tide.