How is this for synergy? Fresh on the heels of Jordan’s excellent Tight End Unit Preview comes news that Alabama TE Miller Forristall is back to practice and is at 100%. He was going to be The Answer to replace O.J. Howard, until he lost all of last season to a knee injury. Having a healthy, confident MF (pun intended) back in the lineup gives OC Mike Locksley even more options with this loaded offense.
Cecil Hurts at TN/TideSports has a nice little feature with Anfernee Jennings. Having his pass rush back will be invaluable to an Alabama defense searching for pressure. Anfernee also talks about the difference that new DC Tosh Lupoi brings to the defense as its head man:
One change in the coaching staff, which has Tosh Lupoi coaching Jennings’ group as well as serving as defensive coordinator, does help to enliven the long days, Jennings said.
“It’s not that we’ve changed what we are doing,” he said. “We’re still running the same base. He just brings a little extra juice to the meetings. Tosh definitely fires you up, but that’s just him being him.”
Casagrande’s practice report, the second night under the lights for ‘Bama, is in. And, there is some encouraging news on the injury availability front:
-- Brian Robinson also looked fine for a second straight day after being limited Monday. Najee Harris remains out and is expected to be back in two weeks, AL.com reported Tuesday.
-- New middle linebacker Ale Kaho was in his final practice before he’s allowed to don full pads. He was in helmet and shoulder pads again.
Much more at the above link.
We’ve been remarking all offseason about how nasty this offensive line will be. It seems CBS agrees. It has released its preseason All-Americans. Of, Alabama’s three selections, two are on the offensive line. Can you guess them?
Following up Kira Lewis’ commitment, Hank South at BOL/247 has a great interview with the future ‘Bama star point guard.
If you caught last night’s Training Days, Ranier Sabin has an interesting analysis here at AL: It was subtly about Jalen Hurts.
And, ICYMI, every broadcast we have an open thread for you to sound off on. So check that out on Tuesday evenings. If you wish to review those, here are your/our thoughts on Episode One and last night’s Episode Two.
SI has also released its preseason All-American two-deep. And, yes, it also pegs three ‘Bama players as AAs. And,yes, two of them match CBS’...but, even if you guessed those two players, who’s the third? (Hint: I think the season will end with BOTH CBS and SI being correct, plus the addition of a certain QB and a certain RB...with a possible honorable mention for a certain defensive end.)
With Tua Tagovailoa throwing four touchdowns in scrimmage, a lot of eyes will be on Hurts and how well he can perform to get back in the competition.
College football analyst Russ Mitchell joined The Game with Ryan Fowler to discuss Alabama quarterback competition. He also breaks down the SEC West, Dan Mullen at Florida and if he would you buy stock in Kirby Smart at Georgia.
This is a good chat between Mitchel and Fowler. Grab 15 minutes to listen to it, particularly the East breakdown.
If you read today’s unpopular opinion roundtable, you know that CB went full-gump, and as far as he was willing to go on the contrarian cliff is that Trevon Diggs will lock down one corner spot and will stay there all year.
“As a player, I grew,” Diggs said. “I didn’t really know too much about the plays, but I knew the position, I just didn’t know the plays. It’s like you know one thing, but you can’t really do it because you don’t really know. Once you get the plays and stuff taken care of everything starts falling into place. It’s an easy turnover once I got everything, and I feel more comfortable.”
The Cardinals have begun yapping about their advantage over Alabama’s green secondary. For their part, the Tide is trying to stay focused on improving and ignore the chatter. #TheProcess.
If you missed what Dez Fitzpatrick said, here it is in a nutshell:
“Every receiver in our receiver corps can honestly beat every one of their DBs one-on-one in coverage,” Fitzpatrick said in a video tweeted by WLKY-TV. “It ties into the other stuff, if the blocks are right, if the quarterback’s drop is right, we ran eight-yard routes instead of a 10-yard route, that’s the kind of stuff I feel like we need to sharpen up.
Alabama has three players that could all start at QB and move the offense. And the prevailing thinking among the national commentariat is that this is a problem. No, a true problem lies Southwest, in Baton Rouge. Yesterday morning, Ed Orgeron woke up to four Tiger quarterbacks on the roster, and none of whom were demonstrable starters — then that number diminished by 50% in just 24 hours:
Ohio State transfer Joe Burrow and sophomore Myles Brennan are the last remaining competitors for the Tigers’ starting quarterback position with news that Justin McMillan and Lowell Narcisse will transfer from LSU.
The job is almost certainly Burrow’s to lose. That said, he couldn’t make it on the field in Columbus. The SEC won’t be any more forgiving. If he flops, the future is now for Myles Brennan, who has a cannon for an arm but lacks experience, accuracy and field presence. Ignore the sunshine pumpers in Purple and Gold: This was always going to be a tough year. It could very well be a catastrophic one.
Joking during an interview on ESPN 104.5 as he recalled Alabama’s overtime win against the Tigers in 2014, the current Florida Atlantic coach said the Crimson Tide managed to win because the stadium wasn’t loud enough. ”We were able to whistle from the sidelines and audible to the pick play – I mean rub play, not pick play – to score down there in the endzone,” Kiffin said jokingly.
Ben Jones at TideSports sort of let the cat out of the bag yesterday. AT SOME POINT VERY SOON, Alabama will announce a $600m, three-phase capital improvement plan and facilities fundraiser that — at least immediately — includes projects at Bryant Denny Stadium, Rhoads Stadium, and the Men and Women’s Golf Facilities.
There are some rather disappointing features of the fundraiser/decade-long plan, and we will absolutely cover those after A VERY MUCH IMPENDING PRESS CONFERENCE AT A DATE AND TIME TO BE DETERMINED.
It’s safe to assume that everyone, at every media outlet, knew or knows at least the vague outline of this plan and has held their tongues. But, Jones had to break the “exclusive” story. In many respects, you can understand that: he’s a traditional reporter and that’s how they are educated. But, I devoutly hope that adhering to antiquated media notions of “getting a scoop” on poorly-kept secrets doesn’t get anyone fired.
I fully admit I could be biased here, and I’m not chastising anyone. Lord knows, I’m not. I just worry about the career of the person(s) who leaked to Jones. Leaks serve a valuable purpose. While we as a site generally don’t “scoop” anything, we (and many other sites) do use that a priori information to form the basis for later analytical and editorial pieces. And no one should be fired for helping us serve readers.
“Three can keep a secret if two are dead” - Benjamin Franklin
We will have more for you later today. Go forth to reading: there’s a ton up there to tackle