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Jumbo Package: Titans checked with Nick Saban before pulling the trigger on Julio trade

Your latest Crimson Tide news and notes.

NCAA FOOTBALL: OCT 23 Alabama at Tennessee Photo by Greg McWilliams/Icon SMI/Corbis/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Happy Friday, everyone. As you know, Julio Jones was traded to the Tennessee Titans where he will play with Derrick Henry. Titans head coach Mike Vrabel spoke about reaching out to Saban before the deal went down.

“I’ve had a really good relationship with coach Saban,” Vrabel said on Thursday. “He’s welcomed me down there really to just try to get better and improve as a football coach. And then, the ability to call him and ask him about a situation, about adding a player that he’s coached was something that I was able to do. …

“Coach Saban obviously thinks a great deal about Julio as a person.”

NFL coaches come to Saban for guidance on players and improving themselves as coaches. I ask again why a kid with NFL aspirations would go anywhere else if Alabama wants him.

The Tide had a lot of success across the board in the 2020-21 school year but there was also some heartbreak. Nate Oats spoke about it.

SEC men’s basketball player of the year Herb Jones missed four free throws in the final two minutes of an upset Sweet 16 loss to UCLA. SEC softball co-pitcher of the year Montana Fouts suffered through her worst career start in Monday’s season-ending loss to Florida State three days after pitching the WCWS’s first perfect game in 21 years.

“I felt for them,” men’s basketball coach Nate Oats said Tuesday on WJOX of softball’s defeat. “It’s one of those deals where you know they’re a lot better than what they showed [Monday] night. Similar to our game. We shoot 11-of-25 from the free-throw line or we advance.”

“Sports, it’s one of those deals — the best team doesn’t always win. You don’t always win at the very end when you’d like to.”

A basketball elite eight and a WCWS championship were there for the taking. Still, both teams had outstanding seasons and had much to be proud of.

Barrett Sallee has a little breakdown of the SEC football transfers for you.

Alabama LB Henry To’o To’o

To’o To’o was, by far, the highest-profile transfer of the 2021 cycle, but he’s still got a job to win. Christian Harris is established at one of the middle linebacker spots, and Jaylen Moody and Shane Lee both have plenty of experience inside as well. Despite that, it’s likely that To’o To’o, who had 140 tackles in two seasons with Tennessee, is the odds-on favorite to fill that spot alongside Harris. That’s one of the most dangerous defensive one-two punches in all of college football. Lather, rinse, repeat for Alabama’s defense. This time, though, it’ll be through the transfer portal instead of the established roster.

While Henry T will have to win it in practice, he didn’t come here to sit on the bench. He will feature prominently.

Last, CBS takes a look at how the 12 team playoff would have played out through the years. Here’s the 2019 slate.

No. 12 Memphis at No. 5 Georgia winner vs. 4. Oklahoma

No. 11 Utah at No. 6 Oregon winner vs. 3. Clemson

No. 10 Penn State at No. 7 Baylor winner vs. 2. Ohio State

No. 9 Florida at No. 8 Wisconsin winner vs. 1. LSU

The 2019 College Football Playoff with a 12-team format is a prime example of how the Pac-12 can benefit from expansion. No team from the league made the top four, but both Oregon and Utah would have made a 12-team field. Ironically, though, they would have been pitted against each other in a first-round game after meeting each other in the conference title game on Dec. 6.

Yeah, Alabama would have whipped at least 8 of those teams, but we’ll leave that in the past.

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

Roll Tide.