“No. No because there’s a condition on every single one of them. If Florida can find a quarterback and their defense doesn’t drop off that much. If LSU can figure out how to use all those athletes they have on offense. LSU seems like the most logical one because even when they’ve struggled, they’ve played Alabama tough when it’s been in Baton Rouge. They haven’t always played them tough in Tuscaloosa. It seems like athletically, they’re the closest to Alabama in the SEC. With a little more creativity on offense, maybe they have a chance. But I’ve got to see that on the field. We saw that Les Miles offense for too long to think that just changing the people will change everything. I want to see it work on the field before I start believing that anyone can play with Alabama.” - Andy Staples, Sports Illustrated
Andy Staples, Paul Finebaum, and George Schroeder with USA Today all basically said the same thing: Alabama is king and it’s not close. Meanwhile, Barrett Sallee is typing his little heart out saying that Bama is more flawed than advertised and Auburn and Georgia are underrated. Ha.
"It is the biggest Week 1 game we probably will ever see," said Greg McElroy, the ESPN-SEC Network analyst and quarterback on Nick Saban's first national title team with the Crimson Tide in 2010.
He visited Pensacola Tuesday night to address the Pensacola Bama Club's annual scholarship kickoff dinner event at Pensacola State College's Hartsell Arena.
"Teams schedule so far out in advance and I don't think anyone knew the magnitude of this game when it was scheduled years ago," said McElroy, who can be heard each weekday morning on Sirius XM Radio with co-host Taylor Zarzour on "The First Team" program. "It just happens to be this year that both FSU and Alabama are expected to be exceptional."
A full month of preamble for this game won't change one dynamic that McElroy views as critical to the outcome.
Can FSU's offensive line, which has often been sporadic in performance, handle Alabama's talented defensive front?
"That was the position group that struggled the most last season," McElroy said. "Alabama feasts on teams that struggle there.
This is mostly just some quotes from Greg McElroy down in Pensacola last night. He didn’t say too much of note that we haven’t already discussed on here, but its always good to keep up with the alumni.
It is true thought that nobody expected this Alabama-FSU matchup when it was scheduled to be just as big as it actually ended up being. #1 vs #2 to open the season is a real treat for a college football starved population. It’ll be great to give them indigestion if the Tide manages yet another blowout to open the season. The Bama fatigue will definitely hit immediately then.
“We expect to have a really good year. I like the attitude that our team has had this offseason, that they’ve brought to the table this summer, their work ethic, the demeanor of this football team, I’m excited about. Even though they’re a young group -- we only have 12 seniors on the roster this year and a very young football team -- I’m excited about what the season’s going to hold, excited about year No. 9 and finding a way to still be here and excited to continue to build this program to be a program that competes or hopefully has the opportunity to compete for championships on a regular basis in the Southeastern Conference.”- Dan Mullen
I’ve always been a fan of what Dan Mullen has been doing at Miss State. If Nick Fitzgerald can take a step forward this year and prove that Mullen wasn’t just riding on the talent of Dak Prescott the last few years, then it will really cement how impressive of a head coach he has been in Starkville.
Former Alabama All-American Jonathan Allen is scheduled to report for his first NFL training camp on Wednesday. Maybe by the time the preseason ends, he'll know which position he'll play for the Washington Redskins as a rookie.
On an appearance earlier this month on "Cooley and Kevin" on WTEM-AM in Washington, D.C., Allen was asked what position he was playing now that the Redskins' 2017 first-round draft choice had completed Washington's offseason program.
"Defensive lineman -- I have no idea where," Allen answered. "According to (defensive-line) coach (Jim) Tomsula, every defensive lineman we have on the team is going to be cross-trained in every position, including nose."
Looks like it’s a good thing Allen played for Nick Saban at Alabama, since he was cross-trained at every position along the defensive line (and played them all in game too) while in college.
I still can’t believe how far Allen fell in the draft this year. You know Washington was having a party when they saw that a player who some considered to be a top-3 talent fell to them. I hope to see him make a huge impact and a long career to prove the league wrong.