Happy Tuesday, everyone. Not much going on today, but we did find out that Matt Rhea is leaving for New Orleans.
Ballou, on the other hand, appears to be staying in Tuscaloosa after New Orleans also showed interest in him, sources tell BamaOnLine. Pate also reported Monday that Ballou is expected to remain at UA. Ballou simply tweeted #RollTide a week ago, likely indicating his intentions.
It isn’t surprising that Rhea is taking the leap. He has a Ph.D, has reached the pinnacle of success at the college level, and based on his social media posts he has the ego to match. Working with professional athletes has likely been a dream of his, and good on him for achieving it.
It’s interesting that Ballou and Rhea are splitting up after working together for several years. Ballou is obviously the hands-on strength guy, so Rhea will only need replaced if Byrne and Saban feel that a sports science guy is necessary now that the center is up and running.
Nate Oats is also losing his S&C coach.
“He and his wife are expecting now,” Oats said Monday night on his weekly radio show at Baumhower’s Victory Grille. “They’re moving back to his hometown. He got a job back in his hometown, and she’s an hour away from there. So they’ll have their first kid. It’s a job that he’s able to spend a little bit more time at home. It makes sense.
Congrats on the little one, Mike.
Emmanuel Henderson is coming in with tons of athleticism but an undefined position.
While Henderson builds his 6-foot-1, 185-pound frame into a Division I standard, his speed should still be effective on special teams or on plays that stretch a defense. In the long term, though, Striplin believes can be a similarly complete back. Whether it happens at Alabama remains to be seen.
“I have asked him on numerous occasions, ‘What do you want to play?’ And he just says he will play wherever you need me to play,” Saban said last December. “I think the guy has special athletic ability, probably could be a receiver, probably could be a running back. Where he fits the best, We will probably be able to figure out better once he gets here and we start working with him.”
Henderson is built, and plays, just like Kenyan Drake. Versatile backs like that cause all kinds of headaches for defenses.
Drake cemented his legacy with the kickoff return against Clemson. Only freakish bones kept him from putting up eye popping stats in college. Hopefully Henderson will have the opportunity to do what Kenyan could have done.
Last, if you have been following the MLB negotiations, today is an important day.
There will be no deal on a new collective-bargaining agreement in this early hour, sources tell ESPN. Enough progress was made that MLB and the MLBPA will meet again later today in hopes of finalizing one. Deadline to miss regular-season games has been moved to 5 p.m. today.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) March 1, 2022
Guess we’ll see if the billionaires can work out their issues with the multi-millionaires sufficiently for the rest of us to be entertained with baseball this season.
That’s about it for now. Have a great day.