I hated having Mike Shula as Alabamaâ€™s football coach. I believe I made that feeling clear on message boards and my blog for months last year.
And what was the reaction from fellow Alabama fans? I got called a â€œbarnerâ€, was banned from al.comâ€™s message boards, and accused more than once of just causing problems. I was admonished by several â€œin-the-knowâ€ Alabama fans to just drop my crusade against Shula because nothing was going to happen, and I was only hurting Alabama.
Now these same Shula-fanatics are leading the cheers for Saban, and attacking anyone who dares say anything bad about the coach. Whatâ€™s more, they are going after anyone who defends Shula.
Talk about hypocrisy. Or stupidity.
The latest and greatest example of whatâ€™s wrong with the Alabama nation can be seen in the treatment of Bob Baumhower. Baumhower, the legendary Alabama player and restauranteur, was a vocal supporter of Mike Shula. Apparently, he hasnâ€™t changed.
From the message board chatter, Baumhower went on Dan Le Batardâ€™s Miami radio program and didnâ€™t defend Saban (at least enough for some message board posters.) I listened to the audio clip of Le Batard talking with Baumhower. The former Dolphin player was very matter of fact in his stanceâ€”he supported Shula and isnâ€™t ashamed to admit.
â€œThere were a lot of folks pulling for Coach Shula to get another year and see if he could get back to his winning ways,â€ Baumhower said on the show.
And you know what. He is right. There were a lot of idiot fans out there (now the loudest Saban cheerleaders), who were saying the same things last year. Baumhower is a man of integrity and just hasnâ€™t changed his stance. Heâ€™s wrong. Shula never was a winner, and couldnâ€™t coach his way out of a paper bag. But Iâ€™m going to support Baumhowerâ€™s right to stand by his beliefs.
Why? Because we need openness and honesty in the Alabama family. We need to stop seeing traitors everywhere.