Happy Thursday, everyone. First off, congratulations to the city of Houston on the Astros’ championship. Fans in Tuscaloosa know all too well how sports can help a town heal after a natural disaster. Hopefully some of those affected by the awful flooding were able to experience a bit of joy this fall.
In football news, Deionte Thompson’s attorney is maintaining his innocence:
"From the outset, Deionte Thompson has indicated that he was not apart of the assault of Noah Frillou and maintains that position even after this indictment. It is important for the community to remember that an indictment is simply an accusation of wrongdoing based upon the lowest legal burden in our criminal justice system and is not an indication of one's actual guilt.
"While the incident that occurred on March 18, 2017 was unfortunate, there are some things that must be made clear. Deionte Thompson was not involved in the assault of Noah Frillou, as many witnesses to the incident have indicated, and there is no video evidence demonstrating anything to the contrary."
From the sounds of things, Frillou and his friends somehow got into a heated discussion with Thompson and friends. Frillou allegedly used a racial slur and got his butt kicked for his trouble. According to Thompson and his attorney, Deionte wasn’t the one doing the butt kicking. Saban seems to be confident in the facts as well, at least enough to avoid rushing to judgment. We will keep you updated if more details emerge.
On to LSU:
"It is a little different, especially from anything that we've seen this year," the Alabama coach explained. "But having a little extra time probably is a good thing when you play an offense like this because there are a lot of multiples in terms of formations and motions and how the defensive players need to understand and adjust."
For the Crimson Tide, focus, discipline and preparation will be as important as the brute force typically required to win an Alabama-LSU matchup, defensive back Minkah Fitzpatrick said.
After all, Canada's plan is to create confusion.
Shifts and motion don’t generally bother the Alabama defense too much because they are very disciplined and gap sound up front. As always, no play works if you can’t block, and LSU has been unable to block Alabama for the past few seasons. That will have to change before any scheme will find success.
“Josh Jacobs is fine. He’ll be able to play, no question,” Saban said. “Da’Shawn Hand has practiced, got reps. I don’t think we’ll be able to know whether he’ll be able to play or not until pregame. He’s been medically cleared, but still, anytime a player’s coming off an injury, I think that player’s got to have confidence that he can go out there and do his job well.
“I usually talk to the player about that, and we’ll make a decision in pregame on his status for the game.”
It sounds like Hand is going to give it a go, but here’s hoping he rests another week. The November slate gets progressively more difficult save for the virtual bye week before the Iron Bowl.
"She knows we have to stop that quarterback for sure," Orgeron said of Alabama's Jalen Hurts.
Her son agrees.
"I think this quarterback is the catalyst for this football team," he said. "He makes them go."
That sounds like some great advice, Ed. Key everything on Jalen Hurts. Stop Hurts, you stop Alabama. Just ignore number 34, he’s no threat. Honest.
Shaun Dion Hamilton: “It doesn’t matter. We can only focus on what Alabama does.”
Calvin Ridley: “I really don’t have anything on it. It’s just two good teams fixing to play each other. We’ve got to prepare this week and we’re playing a great team.”
Anthony Averett: “Personally, I kind of don’t really pay attention to it. I feel like every team talks a little bit, so I mean I don’t really focus on that. Every time we play LSU, they play us tough, so we’re going to be ready regardless.”
Da'Ron Payne: “We really don’t think too much into it. We just try to focus on what we can focus on and play the game.”
Alabama’s grown men have no interest in the yapping from Baton Rouge children. They have a job to do.
“I put a call into him, left him a message, didn’t get ahold of him,” Saban said. “I understand he went to see his granddaughter in Arizona.
“I did talk to Jimmy (agent Jimmy Sexton, who has both Saban and McElwain as clients) about him and how he was doing, sent a message through Jimmy to him.
“As the week winds down here, I’d certainly like to have an opportunity to let him know that we’re here to support him in every way that we can. I think Jim did a really good job there to get to the SEC championship game the last two years, the first two years he was there. We’ve had to play them and they’re always difficult preparation.
“I’m just sorry it didn’t work out for him better. We’ll do everything we can to help him in the future.”
Well, that headline didn’t match for whatever reason. Obviously, Coach was talking about McElwain. Perhaps he will be the next enrollee into the Nick Saban Career Rehabilitation Program™.
That’s about it for today. Friday’s just a day away, folks.