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Jumbo Package: Friday, 8 July 2016

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Crimson Tide news and notes.

Student Sports

Happy Friday, everyone. We start this morning with some recruiting news from The Opening:

The Opening 2016: Day 2 news and notes from Alabama, Auburn recruits | AL.com

* Alabama QB Tua Tagovailoa has a strong arm. If there's something to work on, his touch would be it. Some of his shorter throws are lasers.

* Clay-Chalkville WR Nico Collins confirmed that Michigan leads. Alabama is right behind them, followed by Georgia. I wondered if Collins told that to writers who cover Michigan yesterday because he thought that's what they wanted to hear - recruits do that. But like I alluded to last week, the Wolverines right now are on top.

Alabama, Auburn to host 5-star Tyjon Lindsey, who's 'not afraid to leave California' | AL.com

ALABAMA

"The history and the legacy. They're known for winning national championships and producing NFL-ready guys. I just want that to be seen in me. They don't really recruit guys out of state, especially from California, who are my size. So for them to take a chance on me is something special."

Lindsey may be something of a long shot to end up with the Tide, but he is going to be fun to watch wherever he lands. Similarly sized to Alabama legend David Palmer, he is absolutely electric with the football in his hands. It's rare for a player of his size to be given five stars. Nico Collins has the Michigan Wolverines in the lead currently, but Alabama is a close second and there is plenty of time. With Tyrell Shavers on board along with several other blue chips, Collins won't be a need from a positional standpoint, but the idea of a Big Ten school pulling the top recruit from the state isn't a pleasant thought.

As far as Tagovaiola goes, let's hope that he sticks with the Tide as more schools, chiefly the USC Trojans,  make a hard push for him. The young man is not only a great athlete - that is an NFL arm, folks:

Tua has all the tools to be an elite college QB and pro prospect.

50 questions, 50 days until college football starts

47. Who are Sporting News’ picks for the College Football Playoff? Ohio State, Oklahoma, Alabama and Clemson.

48. Did all that chalk get in your eyes? Yes, this will get blown up at some point this season, maybe even Week 1. But we like chalk.

49. College Football Playoff Championship Game? Alabama vs. Clemson. Rematch!

50. Who wins it all? Roll Tide until someone says otherwise.

Roll Tide, Bill.

How the 'grandfather' of Alabama's staff is helping behind the scenes | AL.com

Last year, Pendry was a resource for Kiesau, who was hired to help Alabama transition to more of an up-tempo, no-huddle offense. Kiesau was in constant communication with offensive coordinator Lane Kiffin and other Tide offensive coaches. And also Pendry.

"Joe Pendry is awesome," Kiesau said. "He has so much knowledge, and he understands the brand of football Alabama wants to run, so he was a sounding board in the meetings. And if any thoughts or anything came up, he would help and try to fix it and try to keep it very simple for the O-line. He has a big O-line background. So there were some things, like when I was producing the terminology, he would say for example, 'Well, no, we still need this word because it affects the left tackle.'"

Kiesau was hired away by Fresno State to run their offense in December, but I can only imagine some of the meetings featuring dyed in the wool ground-and-pound advocate Pendry and the young hot-shot HUNH guy. The article goes on to state that Pendry is also consulting for Coach Mac and the Florida Gators. That Saban tree has some deep roots.

What does Sylvester Croom think of pupil Derrick Henry? | AL.com

Croom worked with Henry during Tennessee's offseason program. Croom said Henry has obvious physical talent, but the key to his success – or any rookie's – will be "the mental toughness, the mental discipline."

Mental toughness, eh? Don't think you'll have any issues with Derrick there, Coach.

WV MetroNews – Saban joins Fisher, asks for donations from high schools in Alabama

"Football was such an important part of my childhood in West Virginia, and to see the devastation the flooding has caused, and how it has threatened so many high school football teams, we wanted to find a way to help," he said in a release. "We are asking each high school from across the state to donate a full uniform to help these schools get their kids back on the football field this season."

Just Evil Saban doing Evil Saban things again.

Mailbag: What's the best college football weekend trip this year? | FOX Sports

The ultimate college football weekend is taking place in your own state on Labor Day weekend. Start out at Oklahoma-Houston at 11 a.m. on Saturday, then hit the road to Arlington in time for USC-Alabama at 7 p.m. (with bonus points if you stop off in College Station for part of UCLA-Texas A&M at 2:30) and finish with a Texas home game Sunday night against Notre Dame. Beyond that, I’ll open it to the readers for suggestions.

That would be a whale of a trip, though you'd probably want to sleep for a week afterward.

Trevor Knight: Why grad transfers are right for college football

The recruiting process as a mature student-athlete is different than as a teenager. Coaches don't focus as much on trying to show off the facilities or the uniforms. We talk seriously about what I could accomplish in one season. For me, I felt instantly comfortable at A&M. I know what happened in the off-season with the other quarterbacks transferring out, but I also know the media and outside talk can sometimes make situations sound a lot worse than they really are. I believe in the culture at A&M. I believe in the people here, and the direction coach Sumlin is taking the program. The community here is really tight knit, and the football family wrapped its arms around me from the moment I arrived. I feel like I've already been here four years. I couldn't have asked for a better situation—and that's why I ran toward it.

If I had to give advice to the younger generation, it's to not let recruiting get in the way of you having fun. But more than that, if you do decide you want to transfer, you need to handle it the right way. There's a time and place for everything, and you need to remember that relationships are at stake. Don't make a big deal about it and don't make it all about you. Remember why you play in the first place—because of your brothers. If you decide to leave, don't lose them in the process. I pride myself on the fact that I could go back to Norman right now and be accepted internally and externally with the fans, the university and all my old teammates and coaches.

Great piece from former Oklahoma Sooners QB and renowned Katy Perry crush Trevor Knight, who was given the keys to the Texas A&M Aggies offense following the mass exodus in the offseason. This is sage advice for high school athletes who are soaking up the limelight during the process.

Greg McElroy moving into broadcast booth with ABC/ESPN | AL.com

The 28-year-old McElroy will be joined in the booth by veteran play-by-play announcer Dave Pasch. Tom Luginbill will serve as the crew's sideline reporter. McElroy will also provide studio commentary throughout the week for SEC Network before calling a game that weekend.

Shouldn't come as any surprise to anyone that Greg is moving up in the world. Looking forward to hearing him call some games this season.

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

Roll Tide.