Happy Monday, everyone. Many people pointed out on social media yesterday that we have reached and now surpassed the 5,000 day mark since Tennessee beat Alabama. The last time that happened:
- George W. Bush was president
- American Idol was the top show on TV
- “SexyBack” by Justin Timberlake was atop the charts
- The Dow Jones Industrial had just surpassed 12,000 for the first time ever
- We were still ten months away from the launch of the first iPhone
- Twitter was four months old and Instagram was four years away
Yeah, it’s been a minute, and for that we are #blessed.
Nick Saban seems pleased with the way the team has responded this offseason, all things considered.
“I think the more veteran players will be less impacted by this,” Saban said. “They have a little more knowledge and experience. I think missing spring practice impacts them a lot less than it does a younger player who is trying to learn and develop the kind of knowledge and experience that would help them be able to perform and understand exactly what he has to do to be accountable to do his job.
“And I don’t even really know now how much of that will we be able to make up for in the summer by what we’re allowed to do and what we’re not allowed to do, and how much progress will each one of these guys make when fall camp comes. So, I think the more veteran players will be less affected; therefore, the more veteran teams will probably be less affected, especially early in the season.
“But hopefully, through good conditioning, we won’t have a lot of issues from a health standpoint. We’ll keep guys healthy so they can make the progress that they need to make to be productive.”
Saban wasn’t talking about any particular player there, but the first paragraph certainly reads as if he’s discussing the QB position. It is going to be incredibly difficult for a freshman to come in and win the job over Mac Jones with so little time to prepare. Bryce Young is a known freak though, so we will keep an eye on it. Saban also notes how fortunate the team is to have so many upperclassmen. Guys like Devonta Smith, Dylan Moses, Josh McMillon, and Alex Leatherwood deciding to return can only help in uncertain times.
Oh yeah, Najee Harris also decided to return and lead the running backs.
Another day in the lab with Alabama RB Najee Harris . #secrbs #runningbacks @ohthatsNajee22 @SEC @SECNetwork @SaturdayDown pic.twitter.com/QMCRGxXoVe— Brad Lester (@BradLester1) June 28, 2020
That man is going to be on a mission this season. Najee also announced on his Instagram that he intends to upload a video series documenting his preparation for the season. If that it something that interests you, give him a follow.
Not to be outdone, Will Reichard showed off his good health.
Feels great to be back healthy. Always a good day of work training with @JamesWilhoit pic.twitter.com/JqBQbDjmU9— Will Reichard (@WillReichard) June 27, 2020
For those keeping score at home, Najee is working out with a former Auburn RB and Will with a former Tennessee kicker. Discuss.
Alabama is well represented on the Sporting News preseason All-America team.
Sporting News’ 2020 preseason All-American team features a total of seven Alabama players between the first and second teams.
Tackle Alex Leatherwood, receiver Devonta Smith and returner Jaylen Waddle made the first team, and they were among the eight SEC selections on that squad. Six other schools put multiple players on the first team, including Clemson, LSU, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Oregon and Penn State.
Najee, Dylan, Deonte Brown and Patrick Surtain II are the Alabama second teamers.
Leatherwood also got a little love from Cole Cubelic.
MY top 5 SEC tackles for 2020: pic.twitter.com/GKWagnsEci— Cole Cubelic (@colecubelic) June 26, 2020
Having that man back to anchor the line is a very big deal, y’all. I had recently told Cole that I hated him because he dared pick Clemson to win a national title.
Good to know.— Cole Cubelic (@colecubelic) June 18, 2020
I guess he can be back in our good graces now.
A small town mayor in Walker County was apparently big mad about the recent video on racial justice put out by the Alabama football team.
Chambers’ initial post read, “I got several Alabama pictures for sale Nick Sabin (sic) and the Tide is done in my opinion I’ll post them tomorrow”. When one person commented, “I think you may be right they haven’t looked as good the last couple of years,” Chambers replied, “I’m not getting rid of them because of how they have performed. Their sorry ass political views is why their (sic) getting out of my house.” In response to another comment, Chambers wrote, “When you put Black lives before all lives they can kiss my ass.”
Chambers resigned due to backlash from his position in an overwhelmingly white, rural Alabama community. As I said on Friday, anyone who has an issue with the players speaking up for themselves and one another needs to do some soul searching. Maybe this fella will take some time to do that.
TeamUSA put out a great feature on former Alabama softball standout and fan favorite Haylie McCleney, who recently bought a south Florida home with her fiance.
She also grew up a devoted member of the Southern Baptist church and struggled initially with how being gay meshed with her faith.
“Faith is a big part of my life; always has been, always will be,” said McCleney. “I kind of got away from it up until the coming out process because I didn’t think I could be gay and be faithful. Now I’m at a point in my life where I’ve accepted myself because God has accepted me, and I feel very strongly about that. I feel more loved by God now as a member of the LGBTQ community than I ever did before, which is really, really awesome. I think that faith process really helped me have difficult conversations with my family and friends.”
Although the conversations weren’t easy to initiate, McCleney said, their families and friends embraced the couple. The people McCleney loved and grew up with and had as coaches, teachers and mentors were accepting and none of their feelings for her changed.
“I feel very, very lucky to have had a conservative upbringing and still be fully loved and accepted,” said McCleney.
Love is a beautiful thing, and it sounds like Haylie has it in spades. May the couple enjoy a long and happy life together.
Last, check out these Atlanta newscasters having a blast on the air.
On this date in 1988, the greatest movie ever, Coming To America debuted in theaters nationwide. Two years ago @FBlankenshipWSB & I paid homage to the classic! #ComingToAmerica #wsbtv pic.twitter.com/KbBy6tVBfC— Mark Arum (@MarkArum) June 29, 2020
Those two friends are known for weaving hip hop lyrics into the broadcast in a similar fashion. It’s a somewhat regular occurrence, and it’s fantastic.
That’s about it for today. Have a great week.