Happy Friday, everyone. Alabama baseball took the first of three against Ole Miss last night in the last series of the season, and thanks to weather will play two tomorrow.
Softball coach Patrick Murphy spoke to reporters ahead of this weekend’s NCAA Regional. He had two players with him, but neither is named Montana Fouts. Here’s what he had to say about her availability.
"She's our version of Tua...she's just one of those once in a lifetime kids." - @UACoachMurphy on @MontanaFouts' importance to @AlabamaSB. pic.twitter.com/0rJvjVb9L1— The Next Round (@NextRoundLive) May 19, 2023
Perhaps I am reading too much into his comments, but that sure sounds like a coach paying homage to a legendary player who has thrown her last pitch for the program. I very much hope to be wrong.
Ty Simpson is getting some offseason work in.
Good work with Alabama QB @ty_simpson06 @QBCountry pic.twitter.com/rhor6xbTia— QB Country Nashville (@QBC_Nashville) May 18, 2023
So much of a QB’s development happens outside the structure of the program nowadays, even moreso now that they are making NIL money to help pay for the best training available.
Bill Connelly had a positive note about Notre Dame’s offense last season in his preview of FBS independents.
Over the last seven games, running backs Logan Diggs and Audric Estime combined to average 158 rushing yards per game (at 5.6 yards per carry) with 10 touchdowns. The offensive line was a mauler, and while Pyne was rarely asked to carry much weight — he threw more than 30 passes in a game just once — he mostly avoided mistakes and produced brilliant performances against Navy (in a win) and USC (in a loss). Buchner returned and threw for 273 yards, with 61 rushing yards and five combined touchdowns (and three near-devastating interceptions) in a Gator Bowl thriller against South Carolina.
The power identity ended up working pretty well. But Rees and Buchner left for Alabama, Pyne transferred to Arizona State, Diggs went to LSU, all-world tight end Michael Mayer ended up with the Las Vegas Raiders, and both star guards ran out of eligibility.
Greg McElroy believes that Saban was very much talking to his boosters and not criticizing Jimbo Fisher last year when he fired off the remarks about A&M buying players.
“It was a challenge to those that were in the crowd that night, mostly consisting of deep-pocketed Bama boosters in what was a relatively intimate event,” said former Tide QB Greg McElroy. “It was a shot in the arm like, ‘Hey, man. I know you’ve really enjoyed the championships that we’ve brought home in the last 12-13 years. And if you want us to continue to compete, you better get the checkbook out.’”
For the longest time, those same boosters had poured money into the athletic department. But now that wasn’t enough. To stay at the top, Saban needed them to embrace NIL and start spending.
“That was Coach’s call to action,” McElroy said. “He’s saying, ‘Guess what? The world is changing, and we better get ready.’”
He is probably correct.
Last, contrary to the opinions of some who seem to believe that the game has passed him by, CBS still has Nick Saban as the best in the nation.
Nick Saban: He’s the greatest college football coach of all time and remains No. 1 in these rankings. Seven national titles, 11 conference titles (shout out to 1990 Toledo!) and an army of former assistants running programs nationwide — including the guy hot on his heels here — fill out his extensive resume. Saban has been so phenomenal throughout his career that going two years without winning a national title has people wondering whether he’s lost a step. 2022 rank: 1 (E)
That’s about it for today. Have a great weekend.