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Jumbo Package: Softball bounced from SEC tournament, Alabama’s NFL rookies discuss their opportunities

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Your latest Crimson Tide news and notes.

2018 NFL Draft Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images

Happy Friday, everyone. It’s a typical offseason weekend without much going on in the way of news from a football standpoint. Unfortunately, the softball team was bounced by top seeded Florida in the SEC tournament.

Two Florida home runs – both following walked batters – accounted for five runs as the No. 4 ranked Gators defeated No. 13 Alabama, 5-2, Thursday in the second round of the Southeastern Conference Softball Tournament in Columbia, Mo.

Alabama, thus, is eliminated from the SEC Tournament, but the Crimson Tide can expect its season to continue when the field and bracket for the 64-team NCAA Tournament is announced Sunday night. It is not unreasonable for Alabama to expect to host a regional.

Alabama fell to 33-18, while Florida improved to 48-8.

Alabama was obviously a huge underdog in that one and actually jumped out to an early lead, but the better team won in the end. They now look ahead to the NCAA tournament.

Moving on to football, “Hi, ‘croots!”

God bless that man. Of course, since it is offseason and all, somebody is writing about his replacement.

Including Herman on this list is admittedly a bit stretch, but it’s not impossible that Alabama would want to bring him in for a conversation should Saban retire in the next few years. The current Texas coach is just one year removed from being the hottest commodity in coaching, and it’s not as though he’s done anything to screw up his reputation since. If the Longhorns continue to improve under his leadership and Alabama finds itself in the market for a coach in the next couple of years, things might get interesting .... might.

As usual, Dabo is listed first here, but something would be amusing about Texas fans sweating over their coach bolting to Tuscaloosa.

“It’s a small world amongst ADs,” Byrne said. “We see each other throughout the year at different events, and I can pick up the phone and give them a call, too. So, I’ve had conversations with several different ADs about some home-and-homes, and then that have any merit to them I go and talk to Coach (Nick) Saban about them.

“Those are ongoing discussions, and there will be schools that have some interest in playing us, and there will some schools that don’t. And that’s OK, that’s part of the scheduling process.”

Wonder how much Byrne got paid for plugging the “It’s a Small World” ride with the opener scheduled in Orlando, hmmm? Seriously though, Greg, we want names of the schools who don’t have interest. Please.

The Crimson Tide will open up the checkbook after contractually agreeing to pay $1.9 million for home games against Southern Miss on Sept. 25, 2021 and Western Kentucky on Sept. 9, 2023, as well as a $1.91 million fee to Utah State for a game on Sept. 3, 2022 at Bryant-Denny Stadium.

The guaranteed $1.91 million price tag is the most Alabama has ever paid to a visiting opponent, and is believed to be the fourth-highest amount paid by a Power 5 program for such a game.

It also mentions that Alabama and Notre Dame can each opt out of the scheduled home-and-home without penalty through January 1, 2020, and can still get out of it even after that. Yeah, those games will never happen.

Bo Scarbrough, RB, Dallas Cowboys

Drafted: Round 7, No. 236 overall out of Alabama.Analysis: Ezekiel Elliott is clearly capable of handling the lion’s share of duties on all three downs, but Scarbrough is a downhill runner who has the size and demeanor to help the Cowboys continue to impose their will on the ground when Elliott is resting. I can envision Scarbrough thriving in a complementary role similar to the one the TitansDerrick Henry has played behind DeMarco Murray for much of his career. Landing Scarbrough in the seventh round could turn out to be a tremendous steal this season.

Bo has a great opportunity in Dallas. A small workload behind Zeke should be perfect for him on those knees.

After drafting Allen last year, Washington used its second-round pick on Alabama outside linebacker Ryan Anderson. Payne said he heard from both players soon after NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell announced his destination during this year’s draft.

”I think they’re a little bit more excited than me,” Payne said. “But it should be a lot of fun. I know just being able to come in and already have some guys I know here, I think it’s going to help me just getting in and trying to get everything. They’ll help me out with little things and guide me in the right direction.”

NFC East QBs are about to be feeling like Connor Cook. Poor Dak Prescott is going to have flashbacks playing those guys twice a year.

“I started working out with (Jones) when I was training for the draft,” Ridley said. “I’m very, very excited that I’m with him (on the Falcons), a veteran receiver I can learn from. It’s honestly going to make me play better because I know Julio is watching me.”

These two are going to light it up together.

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

Roll Tide.