It has been one weird ride, huh?
Ten years ago, Nico (1.0) posted the first Roll 'Bama Roll article on the then-Sports Blog Nation. That sports blog grew from tens of readers a day, to tens of thousands a day -- nearly a million of you some months.
Over that time, RBR has been blessed to have some fantastic managers, editors, contributors, commenters, and the very finest community on the SBN/Vox network.
We have laughed, spat, fought, cried.
We have found friends, lovers, companions, and, yes, even a spouse or two.
We have disagreed bitterly, we have cheered triumphal. We have gone through some of the darkest days of Alabama athletics and have reveled in these, the halcyon days, of the University's nadir.
Through it all, no matter what we as the writers do, the focus is and always has been on you, our readers. Whether you're a lurker, a decade-long commenter, an entrenched corporate hack (looks in mirror,) or a rival fan that just pops by to see what's going on, we have always endeavoured to bring you content that engages you, that piques your interest and contribution.
We know that as RBR has grown somewhat more legitimate (hey, we even have press passes and junkets now!) some of that organic free-flow, that wildly anarchic environment has been diminished. It is our hope, as Nico says in his interview later this week, that we have done so to make this as welcoming a place as possible to as wide an audience as possible.
We'll never steer clear of hot takes. We'll never take the easy route and bite our tongues -- this place was built on passion. Never forget it, never lose sight of it. And always know that it is you that turns the crankshaft in this corner of the internet's sports engine.
Later this week, we'll have interviews with the Todd and Nico. Kleph has already spoken. These are not just look-backs or self-congratulatory pomp either -- they are very real expressions of thanks for what we have built together.
And this one is mine.
So, thank you, and happy birthday to us all.
Erik "that asshole, Stuck in the Plains" Evans