Happy Friday, everyone. Most of the buzz around the Alabama football program continues to revolve around the three assistant openings on Saban’s staff. The most visible opening, of course, is the offensive coordinator, and one name keeps popping up:
He previously worked with Alabama offensive line coach Brent Key and associate athletics director for football Ed Marynowitz at Central Florida. In addition to working together at UCF, Godsey and Key were teammates at Georgia Tech.
Most recently, Godsey served as the offensive coordinator for the Houston Texans during the 2015 and 2016 seasons. He coached quarterbacks for the club in 2014. Godsey and the Texans agreed to a mutual parting of ways following the 2016 campaign.
George’s father, John, played for Bear Bryant in the late 70s.
If Godsey gets the job, there will be inevitable and understandable concern about his background as a coordinator. He has held the post for only two seasons, both at the NFL level, and was reportedly relieved of his play-calling duties this season. Bluntly, the Texans’ offense was nothing short of atrocious this season. Granted, much of that can be blamed on having one of the worst NFL starting QBs in memory, but it certainly doesn’t help Godsey’s candidacy.
So, why would he be considered to coach under Saban, besides the connection to Brent Key?
Nothing fancy about that, folks. It’s a simple I-formation off-tackle lead play that you’d see called at any youth league game in America. Tight end takes out the LB, FB kicks out the contain man, and it’s off to the races. The Texans had the top defense in the league this season, and Godsey’s job was to control the ball and play to that defense. Should he be announced as the hire, the rumors of “philosophical differences” between Saban and Kiffin/Sarkisian will carry more weight.
One source we spoke with believed Napier was ultimately passed over for the Bama OC role, prompting his decision to leave and take a play-calling gig. Those close to the program say Saban had known for a week or two that Sarkisian would take the Falcons job after signing day.
Jimbo Fisher has reportedly grown frustrated with FSU’s unwillingness to pony up the funds needed to keep assistants. Brewster has primarily coached TEs in his career and is known as a top recruiter who was the lead man on top signees Marvin Wilson and Dalvin Cook, so he would be a natural fit in Tuscaloosa.
As for the second paragraph, no surprises there. The staff knew Sark was out and Napier was told he wouldn’t be a candidate, so he moved on to greener pastures.
With starting receiver ArDarius Stewart gone, Jerry Jeudy might be able to play early as well. He certainly fits the mold of past freshman standouts Amari Cooper and Calvin Ridley in that he's also from South Florida, checks in around 6-foot-1 and is a top-10 prospect at his position.
Hitting on three such prospects in a row would be remarkable, but not impossible.
Recruiting, as Saban said, is an inexact science.
Four-star wide receiver Tyrell Shavers shared the same reaction. The 6-foot-6, Lewisville, Texas, native said he has gained seven pounds since enrolling in January and is up to 205 with more than a month until spring practices begin. His weight goal for the start of the season is 215-220.
A run-first offense, of course, wouldn’t prevent the team from utilizing all of this top receiving talent. We just saw an Atlanta team in the Super Bowl that finished #5 in the league in rushing while also feeding 1400-yard receiver Julio Jones amongst many other targets. There is ample talent on this roster to achieve true, unstoppable balance in similar fashion to the Falcons.
On Shavers, the kid is raw, but if he gets to 215 while maintaining 4.4 speed at 6’6” with strong hands, he will be on the field. You don’t have to be a great route-runner when #blessed with those measurables.
A one-time free transfer rule between seasons seems like a good place to start that discussion, don't you think?
Many of you don't, and often the primary objection is the free-agency chaos theory. Please. Alabama didn't wobble or waver after losing Smith in August or Barnett in September, and it's likely that losing Sarkisian in February won't put a dent in the dynasty, either. If roster movement makes Nick Saban's job more difficult, well, he makes $7 million a year to do that job.
They already can transfer, Scarb. They just have to sit a year unless they have graduated from juco or graduated from a FBS school and transfer out-of-conference.
We’ll finish up with USA Today’s most recent ranking of basketball recruits:
Guess who has four of the top 85 prospects in the country signed and ready to compete next season? #AlabamaDoes
For some reason they have Sexton listed as a SG, but he runs the point on his high school team and ran it for the FIBA world champion squad. His scoring ability makes him more of a combo guard in the mold of Kyrie Irving, to whom he is often compared.
Not listed is three-star big Galin Smith, who will be an important addition along with Alex Reese as Coach Johnson looks to replace the rebounding lost with the departures of Jimmie Taylor and Bola Olaniyan. Donta Hall will return, and hopefully F Nick King and/or C Daniel Giddens will make some strides to become solid rotational pieces as well. Both wings signed in the class, John Petty and perpetually overlooked Herb Jones, both have outstanding length at 6’7” and should contribute in this area, along with Riley Norris. Lack of depth or versatility certainly won’t be an issue.
That’s about it for today. Have a great weekend.