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Jumbo Package: Monday, 25 July 2016

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Crimson Tide news and notes.

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Marvin Gentry-USA TODAY Sports

Happy Monday, everyone. Pickings are a little slim this morning, but we have some interesting reads for you. We'll start with an interesting poll question courtesy of Mr. SEC himself, Tony Barnhart:

The muddled middle will make this SEC season interesting

What I want to do is look at the bottom four teams in both divisions and break the teams down in two areas that will probably determine where they’ll finish.

1. What are the crossover games? Who does the team play from the other division?

2. Where does the team play the other three teams in its division that are battling for the fourth spot?

For each team, those five games will be the difference in finishing fourth and finishing seventh in the division. And that’s a big deal. For a coach trying to keep his job, selling No. 4 is doable. There ain’t no good way to sell No. 7.

No there isn't, Tony, and the SEC West does indeed have four promising candidates to finish in that coveted dead-last position. Which of the four do you expect to find pulling up the rear this season? Vote and tell us in the comments.

Alabama HC Nick Saban credits Patriots HC Bill Belichick for his incredible coaching tree - Pats Pulpit

While Belichick’s coaching tree has not had the most success, Saban has done a great job of helping his staff become head coaches throughout college football. The head coaches of the Florida’s Jim McElwain, Florida State’s Jimbo Fisher, South Carolina’s Will Muschamp, Michigan State’s Mark Dantonio, and Georgia’s Kirby Smart are just a few branches of the Saban tree that have become head coaches in the college ranks. Titans head coach Mike Mularkey, Falcons head coach Dan Quinn, and Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett all served under Saban when he was coaching the Miami Dolphins.

What a list. Nick is like the godfather of college football...

Donald Trump compared to Nick Saban during RNC | AL.com

Tarkenton used University of Alabama coach Nick Saban to illustrate how Trump can save small businesses and, of course, make America great again.  "I believe it all comes down to leadership," Tarkenton said. "Whether it was Vince Lombardi years ago or the great Nick Saban of Alabama today, I can tell you, in just five simple words, what every great leader does. A leader gets stuff done."

...and also presidential candidates?

Two top college football punters killed in car wreck - CBS News

CBS affiliate KOLN in Lincoln, Nebraska, reports senior Sam Foltz was killed. Foltz was a three-year starter named the 2015 Big 10 punter of the year, averaging 44.2 yards a punt in 2015 -- his junior year -- on 56 attempts. Foltz was also a first-team All-Big Ten selection. He graduated from Nebraska with a degree in agronomy in May. Nebraska coach Mike Riley said in a statement: "Last night, we lost one of the best young men who I have ever had the honor to coach and who has ever worn the Nebraska uniform. Sam was universally loved and respected by everyone he touched and on whom he had a positive influence each and every day. His tragic loss is immeasurable to his family, his friends, his classmates, his teammates and his coaches and our thoughts and prayers are with all of them."

Just horrible. These two young men were coming back from working at a kicking camp for high schoolers. Condolences to their families and those close to Michigan State and Nebraska..

Alabama freshman linebacker leaving program | AL.com

Bell is the fourth Tide player to decide to leave the program since Alabama finished spring practice in mid-April. Linebacker Adonis Thomas and defensive backs Maurice Smith and Shawn Burgess-Becker are the others.

Good luck to Christian wherever he lands. As far as the impact on the Alabama team, don't expect too much on the field but we will likely hear plenty about it otherwise. If you recall, Bell was part of the class of 2015 but was asked to grayshirt. He just enrolled in January, then made the decision to transfer before his first fall camp, probably due to the depth of talent at OLB including two stud true freshmen in Mack Wilson and Terrell Hall. In any event, the 2016 season will end up as a de facto redshirt season for him as he will have four to play four wherever he goes.

This year's Minkah Fitzpatrick? Alabama freshman DB making early impression | AL.com

At free safety, Carter had a standout moment during a recent 7-on-7.

It was Carter vs. Tide star wide receiver Calvin Ridley.

Ridley ran a deep post down the middle of the field. Carter had to pick him up and stick with him. A lot of defensive backs would get embarrassed in that situation. Ridley, who ran the 40-yard dash in 4.35 seconds during the spring, is one of Alabama's fastest players and probably one of the faster wide receivers in the country. But Carter kept up with Ridley, remaining close as Ridley worked down the field. The tight coverage contributed to a pass for Ridley being off-target and falling incomplete.

SEC coaches everywhere just reached for the Maalox.

SEC football history at a glance

Dec. 5, 1992: The SEC Championship Game, the first of its kind in major college football, didn’t seem like a good idea in Year 1. Under the old system, unbeaten No. 2 Alabama would have headed straight to the Sugar Bowl to play No. 1 Miami for the national championship. But with the introduction of SEC commissioner Roy Kramer’s new conference title game, the Crimson Tide had to survive an upset scare from No. 12 Florida to secure a national title shot for the SEC. It worked out, as Alabama edged Florida 28-21 and beat Miami 34-13. The SEC title game set the high standard that other conferences have chased ever since.

This is a very interesting chronological piece of important moments in SEC history.

Trent Richardson put on PUP list by Baltimore Ravens | AL.com

The Baltimore Sun reported on June 16 as the Ravens wrapped up their offseason workouts that Richardson likely would need arthroscopic knee surgery before training camp. A hamstring problem sidelined Richardson for the first week of Baltimore's Organized Team Activities. He returned to the field on a limited basis for the second week of OTAs, but did not participate in the final two days of the Ravens' three-day minicamp in June because of what was reported as a reoccurrence of the hamstring issue.

Ugh. Trent just can't seem to get a career going.

That's about it for today. Have a great week.

Roll Tide.