A lot was answered over the previous 15 practices: we have nearly entire offensive starters set, the front seven, safeties, and starting corners set. Still up in the air is how the Tide will juggle the DB rotation and that bugaboo, quarterback.
Final camp notes:
— Alabama's first-team dime group was Marlon Humphrey and Anthony Averett at cornerback, Minkah Fitzpatrick at nickel back, Ronnie Harrison at dime back, Reuben Foster at linebacker and Eddie Jackson and Hootie Jones at safety.
Not very much news out of practice yesterday, and no real changes here, except for Hootie Jones getting the call at one safety spot while playing Harrison perhaps out of position as a roving safety/corner in the dime. Tony Brown, who has been practicing with the safeties but can play both positions, will almost certainly take Jones' spot when he returns or play that rover in the dime, where his natural speed becomes lethal.
Still no word on QB during the media viewing session. But, that's probably going to be a game time decision as the Tide implements its USC game plan over the next two weeks -- if an announcement is made at all.
Since arriving at Alabama in May, wide receiver Gehrig Dieter has already made quite the impression. In fact, the graduate transfer has been so impressive that it's looking more and more like he is going to be a big part of Alabama's offense in 2016. Check out the video above to see how Dieter, who caught 94 passes for 1,033 yards and 10 touchdowns as a redshirt junior at Bowling Green last season, is looking in practice.
Dieter is a surprisingly beefy guy, with very strong hands. He has nice speed and runs very good routes, too. Don't get confused; he is not a classic possession receiver in the mold of Richard Mullaney or Kevin Norwood: He's a legitimate threat.
The 16th practice of Fall Camp began at 3:30 p.m. with the team continuing its preparations for Saturday's second intrasquad scrimmage of the fall. The Tide will take part in 28 total practices on the way to its season opener with the Southern California Trojans. The two teams will meet in the AdvoCare Classic on Sept. 3 inside AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas. The game is scheduled for a 7 p.m. CT kickoff on ABC with Chris Fowler, Kirk Herbstreit and Sam Ponder on the call.
The announcing lineup is set. Now, all we need to know is whether College Gameday is coming.
the iconic show announced it will would NOT be in Arlington on Sept. 3 to see the Trojans and Tide, opting to cover LSU vs. Wisconsin at Lambeau Field (which some thought would be the favorite). Prior to choosing Lambeau Field, College GameDay had done four of the last five Cowboy Classics (now the AdvoCare Classic) as its first game.
And, they're not coming. Too bad the crew chose a very lopsided game, especially with USC-Bama, Ole Miss-FSU, and Texas-Notre Dame all available: The Badgers have lost a metric ton of talent, including their defensive coordinator. I would expect something just as gruesome as last year's Alabama-Wisconsin matchup, particularly since LSU traditionally gets out of the blocks so fast under Miles. As an aside, as cool as it is for these guys to play at Lambeau, imagine how much cooler these games would have been at Camp Randall, or Death Valley, or Bryant Denny Stadium?
Coach Helton was asked about the quarterback position. Helton said he is staying up late at night meticulously reviewing film and checking the numbers in order to make an educated decision. Helton’s self imposed deadline of naming the starting quarterback is rapidly approaching. Helton plans to announce his quarterback decision by the end of the week.
We know it's going to be Max Browne; he knows it's going to be Max Browne.
The QBs Max Browne: 7-for-14, 65 yards (9.3 yards per completion), 1 TD, 3 INTs Best Throw: During his two-minute drive, Browne hit De' Quan Hampton for a first down throw on third and two. It was his final completion in a 4-for-4 and a great bounce back from a tough start. Worst Throw: Browne's worst throw was easily his pick-6 to Adoree' Jackson. I don't recall who he was throwing to but it appeared to be an out route to the sideline. But the throw was way too wide and he might not have been see No. 2 there.
Adoree' Jackson legitimately terrifies me. I don't think there's been a more naturally gifted at every position he so chooses, since Reggie Bush. I hate that Alabama missed out on him, and I hate even more the thought of Bateman or a freshman throwing to his side. Not like the other side is much better: Iman Marshall is a legit pro-prospect and All-PAC 12 type corner. Did I mention the safeties are excellent too? This will be the most talented secondary Alabama faces this season (and certainly the most polished one,) perhaps aside from the raw talent at Texas A&M or LSU.
How does this game not have an SEC team?
On Tuesday, the GoDaddy Bowl’s Twitter account teased a "BIG announcement." Sure enough, the account dropped a huge bombshell on Wednesday morning: The game is switching its sponsorship. Everybody, say hello to The Dollar General Bowl.
Sound the four-alarm Titty Baby Siren
The Michigan Wolverines coach revealed Monday that two of his players have been suspended and that the situation would be "handled internally." When a reporter asked for details on the suspensions, Harbaugh got upset and refused to give any more information on the situation. The Wolverines coach then followed up with some choice words for the reporter, who was simply trying to do his job.
"That's why I don't give you any information. Because you're never satisfied," Harbaugh told reporters. "You always want a second question, a third question, a fourth question."
That's called "a follow-up" question, Jim.His schtick is going to wear thin one day. Winning covers up a lot of personality sins (cough, looks in mirror) but he's too mercurial and simply not wired to retire a college coach.
Hegemons gonna' hegemon
In the 1970s, college football was pretty predictable and coaches were larger than life. The Bear was at 'Bama and JoePa was the man in Happy Valley. The Big Ten actually had 10 teams and the best of them was always coached by Woody or Bo. There was a conference called the Big Eight that was dominated by the Big Two and brash Barry almost always got the best of stoic Dr. Tom when Oklahoma played Nebraska. With Hall of Fame coaches at the helm of many of college football's most successful programs, identifying the best teams in the country during the '70s did not take a ton of searching for voters in The Associated Press poll.
Seven teams comprised 90% of the Top 10 polls throughout the 70s. That said, we're not too far off of that now. It's always been a sport for titans.
Fun "what if"
What if? Tebow had picked Alabama instead of Florida What could’ve been: Tebow doesn’t play enough as a freshman to save Mike Shula’s job, but he’s ready to start as a sophomore under new coach Nick Saban. Tebow evolves in the offense and leads the Crimson Tide to the SEC championship game as a junior and senior, where they split title games against Florida, led by Urban Meyer and Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Cam Newton.
Dabo Swinney, Clemson: Alabama 45, Clemson 40, 2016 January 11. "That one is still with me."
Predictably, Gus Malzahn picked a high school game.
That's it for today. Go forth to evil.