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Jumbo Package: Jalen Hurts ends Alabama QB NFL playoff drought and people are mad

Your latest Crimson Tide news and notes.

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NCAA Football: SEC Championship-Alabama vs Georgia Jason Getz-USA TODAY Sports

Happy Tuesday, everyone. Things didn’t go so well for the women’s hoops team last night, as undefeated LSU handed them a 48 point whipping in Tuscaloosa. Still, the Tide are above .500 in SEC play and 15-5 overall. They appear headed toward another NCAA bid barring a total collapse.

Over the weekend, some fans of lesser football programs decided to share their online opinions that Alabama can’t “claim” Jalen Hurts, all because he played one year at Oklahoma.

Al dot com has a few of the online reactions compiled for you, and two of those balking at Alabama claiming Jalen are somewhat prominent Georgia accounts. That’s pretty amusing. One funny argument I saw from a few is that Alabama can’t claim both Jalen and Jameson Williams as that is “having it both ways.”

Problem for those folks is that both Hurts and Williams hold their undergraduate degrees from the University of Alabama. “Bama fatigue” has always been nonsense when it comes to the actions of the playoff committee, but quite a few fanbases are more than ready to see a few years without Alabama on the national stage.

Sorry folks, can’t accommodate.

Hurts definitely took a unique path to get to where he is, so it probably shouldn’t be surprising that he’s something of a lightning rod in a debate like this. It’s all silliness, but will be far too common in the transfer portal era.

By the way, let’s just leave this video of Jalen celebrating Alabama’s 2020 national title with the team in the postgame locker room right here.

Totally not a Bama guy.

Just wait until he wins the Super Bowl while throwing the ball to DeVonta Smith and enjoying Pro Bowl level pass pro from Landon Dickerson. We might just get real insufferable and that’s right, we claim LaDick too. Deal with it.

Hurts and Brock Purdy will be running it back from a shootout that Jalen won in college.

Purdy finished the day 19-of-30 for 282 yards and five touchdowns. He also rushed for 55 yards and a score in the loss. On the other side, Hurts completed 18-of-26 throws for 273 yards and three touchdowns and added 68 yards and two scores on the ground.

Oklahoma would go on to win the Big 12 title and clinch a berth in the College Football Playoff. The Sooners were smashed in the semifinals 63-28 by Joe Burrow and the LSU Tigers, who went on to win the national championship.

Speaking of Purdy, he made some news this weekend by claiming that Nick Saban was hyper critical of his abilities despite offering him a contract and making a late push to sign him.

According to the 2022 draft’s “Mr. Irrelevant,” Saban told Purdy: “You’re below average in height. Your arm strength is whatever. Your accuracy is average.”

Saban was either trying to light a fire under Purdy, or explicitly telling him not to get his hopes up about ever starting a game for his program.

Whichever it was, this story had a positive outcome. An afterthought draft selection, Purdy has covered himself in glory this postseason. The 49ers’ offense hasn’t missed a step since Brock filled in for the injured Jimmy Garoppolo.

I wasn’t there and ain’t about to call the kid a liar, but this smells a little funny. Alabama did, in fact, offer him a scholarship and even made a late push to sign him. Tua Tagovailoa and Mac Jones were in the fold at Alabama, however, so it’s understandable that he chose to go somewhere else.

So, for those keeping score, of the four quarterbacks who will start in the conference championship games: one graduated from Alabama, one says he drew motivation from being criticized by Nick Saban, and one built his career off of beating Alabama in his fifth year of college football after throwing up a goose egg against them the year prior.

Boston media still seem convinced that Bill O’Brien is headed to Foxborough, though he may be in the mix for a head coaching opportunity elsewhere.

The New England Patriots could have a new offensive coordinator within the next few days. But they’ve yet to finalize anything with their reported “primary target.”

Sports Illustrated’s Albert Breer on Monday reported Bill O’Brien is “the leader in the clubhouse” for New England’s OC position and said he “wouldn’t be surprised if (O’Brien) lands it early this week.”

The Patriots, though, aren’t the only team with O’Brien on their radar.

With the Cardinals hiring Patriots alum Monti Ossenfort as their general manager, Breer indicated O’Brien could be a candidate for Arizona’s open head-coaching job. ESPN’s Mike Reiss reported the same on Sunday.

The likelihood that Bill returns to Tuscaloosa next season as about as close to zero as it gets.

Last, Chase Goodbread thinks that Alabama is done portal shopping this season, but I wouldn’t be so sure.

For now, former Maryland tight end CJ Dippre and former Georgia linebacker Trezmen Marshall represent Alabama’s portal haul, and Saban wouldn’t have brought them under his tent without having confidence they can contribute. Dippre will compete with less experienced tight ends for the role Cam Latu is vacating, while Marshall brings a veteran special teams presence and will join an inside linebacker room that’s losing two starters in To’o To’o and Jaylen Moody. But if the Crimson Tide is to land another big-name transfer who can step in and start, it will likely have to come from the second portal window, which will be open from April 15-30.

This one, where Alabama is concerned, should be considered all but closed.

That post-spring window will likely be an important one going forward, as coaches will have had the full camp to assess where they need additional help. Let the tampering begin.

That’s about it for now. Have a great day.

Roll Tide.