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An Open Letter To Lane Kiffin

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A little advice from your fan base

Marvin Gentry-USA TODAY Sports

Dear Lane,

Thank you for taking the time to read this letter. As you know, there has been some concern among Alabama fans that the offense, and the quarterback play in particular, has lagged behind the defense and may well cost Alabama a chance at a championship this season. Don't get us wrong, we greatly appreciate the work that you put in last year - well, until you lost your mind against Ohio State, anyway - and came into this season excited that you would have the opportunity to choose from several talented signal-callers. With your track record in developing quarterbacks, the sky was the limit!

We learned before the season that you planned on using posterboards adorned with cartoon pictures to signal plays in to the quarterback. We won't lie, Lane, this didn't sit well with many of us because it felt too much like Auburn Alabama is a traditional program with traditional football values. We like our coach-quarterback communication to happen the old-fashioned way: via wireless radio. We groaned and came to terms with this, however, since cartoons make people happy.

More importantly, we are somewhat concerned with your jockeying with the quarterback position. Coming into the season, it certainly appeared that Jake Coker would be the starter. He had been taking almost all of the first team reps during the media viewing period and took the first starting reps at all scrimmages. While we knew that any of the quarterbacks would need time to develop, he looked to be a bit ahead of the pack. While many of us were concerned at your hesitation to name a starter, we decided that it was reasonable for you to wait until you saw both players hand off to Derrick Henry in live game action before deciding which quarterback would get to be the starting hand-off specialist. This brings us to our chief concern.

Lane, to put it bluntly, your offense has not met our expectations. It appears that the cartoon posterboards have led to a Mickey Mouse offense like the one Malzahn runs that we as traditionalists simply haven't warmed up to.

Look, we get it. The fast break style of offense is en vogue right now, similar to skinny fit men's suits. Sure, those skinny suits come in all sorts of fashionable colors and styles that more traditional suits aren't available in. To someone like yourself who is accustomed to sitting at the cool kids' table, these suits would undoubtedly be appealing.

Unfortunately, Lane, those fashionable skinny fit suits don't work for every body type. Some of the more ample-bodied among us opt for more traditional suits out of necessity, because they simply fit better. Make no mistake: this doesn't mean we aren't happy and comfortable in our more traditionally-styled attire. In fact, when we look around at others in their modern gaudy colored suits, we realize that not only will their style be out in a year or two, but that we actually look better than they do. You see, Lane, to Alabama fans classic is sexy.

This brings us back to the offense, Lane. If you weren't able to connect the dots, the hurry-up spread offense is like the gaudy skinny-fit suit. It may be stylish, but it simply doesn't fit us. Hurry-up spread offenses are meant for small, fast scat-backs, offensive linemen who are better at operating in space than knocking people over, and teams with running quarterbacks and lots of depth at wide receiver. The team that you have been entrusted with has a big, bruising running back, big linemen who like road grading, two big, capable pass-catching tight ends, and an inexperienced QB and WR corps that just lost a key member for the season due to injury. We fear that you have been trying to fit a square peg into a round hole, and that this may have been what led you to start Cooper Bateman against Ole Miss, as his skill-set matches better with your favored style. This wasn't necessarily the main reason for the loss, you falling in love with the jet sweep was turnovers were, but we believe it did contribute. Based on the looks you were getting from Coach Saban on Saturday night, we are fairly certain that he agrees.

Lane, you have two weeks until the next big game against Georgia. They are a very, very good team. You will be getting a new toy for your backfield for that game named Bo Scarbrough. Like Henry, he can best be described as a semi-truck when running the football. Two full weeks should be enough time for you to practice an offense that better suits your players. This offense should include: power O runs, power sweeps, iso runs, and play action passes. We strongly recommend pop passes as part of the play action offense - not those newfangled, cheating POP passes, mind you, the old kind where one of the tight ends pretends to run block briefly before taking off down the seam. Perhaps we can draw one up on some notebook paper for you if you aren't familiar with these. We find them to be both effective and aesthetically pleasing.

We hope you won't take this the wrong way, Lane. While we previously thought you were an insufferable douche were surprised that Coach Saban selected you, we really did appreciate the bulk of your work last season and were in fact pleasantly surprised. We know you can make this right. Your job depends on it. We can't wait to see the results.

Sincerely,

Alabama fans everywhere (*but mainly me since some people have a hard time detecting sarcasm)

P.S. Did you see our new buttons? They look great!