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Jumbo Package: Iron Bowl kickoff time announced, Saban speaks on coach firings and transfers

Your latest Crimson Tide news and notes.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: NOV 11 Alabama at Kentucky Photo by Jeff Moreland/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Happy Tuesday, everyone. After each side feasts on a tasty cupcake, we now know what time Alabama and Auburn will meet.

Nick Saban’s squad will face Hugh Freeze’s team at 2:30 p.m. CT on Saturday, Nov. 25 at Jordan-Hare Stadium. The game will be televised on CBS.

It will mark the last game of the regular season as Alabama aims to go undefeated in SEC play. The Crimson Tide has won all its previous seven SEC matchups this season. The only loss Saban’s team has logged came to Texas in Week 2.

Before the Iron Bowl, Alabama will face Chattanooga at home and New Mexico State will travel to Auburn to face the Tigers.

This is the typical Iron Bowl slot. May the pasture voodoo be at a minimum.

Nick Saban spoke to reporters as usual, and was particularly pleased with the offensive line’s improvement this week.

“They played really well,” Saban said. “ I think Kentucky’s big up front. We talked about trying to be the most physical team. I think they did a good job of that. I think we ran the ball in the second half better than we did in the first. And some of that was just how were they playing. But I was really pleased, especially in the second half, with how we controlled the line of scrimmage. I think for the most part the pass protection was a little better, and we want to continue to improve in all those areas.”

May that continue. Terrion Arnold recently expressed his love for “second mom” Miss Terry, and Saban was asked about their relationship.

“Her and Terrion are really kind of buddies,” said Saban, breaking out into a chuckle. “I know she sort of texts with him and all that. I kind of get on him. It’s just kind of like raising your children. I’m the guy that’s [sic] always trying to get them to do right, and she’s the momma who’s always trying to make them happy. That’s the way it’s been for a long time.”

That’s great stuff.

Nick lamented the recent coach firings, as he typically does.

“I don’t ever want to see anybody get let go, whatever we want to call it, in this business,” Saban said. “I know how hard everybody works. I know how difficult it is to sort of build a program, to get players to compete at a high level on a consistent basis, and just have a lot of respect for people who really work hard to try and change the lives of the guys that they’re coaching.”

He was pretty mellow overall in this one, but he got fired up a bit talking about freshmen prioritizing early playing time and transferring when they don’t get it.

“We’ve got all these freshmen who want to play as freshmen,” Saban said. And we’ve had, I don’t know, you can count them up— How many guys go out early for the draft? So if it’s 45 guys, I don’t know if that’s the right number or not, I’ve had 32 phone calls times 45, whatever that number is. In the thousands, right? I’ve never been asked once how much a guy played as a freshman. Never. Not once. Everybody wants to know, what did you develop into?”

That’s a damn fine quote. May some young folks chew on that for a bit.

You can watch the entire press conference below.

Seth McLaughlin was interviewed as well. He spoke about cleaning up the snaps and what his Alabama career has meant to him.

“I went to the dead-ball snap,” he said. “I think the inaccurate snaps have been cleaned up a little bit. That’s still a thing I’m trying to work on, just cleaning up the snaps in practice and in the game — just putting an emphasis on how important it is to get the ball in Milroe’s hands and let him go to work and do what he’s so good at.”

“As I look back, with almost four years coming to an end, it’s pretty crazy. Playing at Alabama has been an incredible blessing for me, just personally and football wise. A lot of hard work has gone into it. It’s the biggest blessing that I’ve ever had. I’m super thankful for coach Saban believing in an undersized, 6-3, 260-pound center from Buford, Georgia, all those years ago. Coming in as the lowest-ranked recruit in the class, it’s meant a lot to me to put the work in and show people that through hard work, you can play here and play at a high level.”

Last, WaPo wrote about how Alabama is being overlooked.

This has been the year the eyeballs finally ignored Alabama. Objective eyeballs trained giddily upon Colorado, of all places, as Deion Sanders’s arrival became a bastion of freshness and a beacon of hope before first-season realities butted in. (A 34-31 home loss to surging Arizona on Tyler Loop’s game-ending 24-yard field goal Saturday left the Buffaloes at 4-6 overall and 1-6 in the Pac-12, with the recruiting still promising.) Eyeballs tilted on up to Seattle, where Washington has conducted a delight of a season. (The Huskies’ 11-0 blanking of No. 18 Utah in the second half Saturday allowed for a 35-28 win, a 10-0 record and a 21-2 mark for second-year coach Kalen DeBoer.)

We’ll find out tonight just how overlooked they continue to be.

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

Roll Tide.