Questions answered about Tide linebackers

By Shane from Centerpoint
When analyzing Alabama’s chances for defensive success in the upcoming 2008 season, linebacker is probably the one position with the biggest question mark. In fact, a large contingent of those who comment on sports for a living and don’t follow the Crimson Tide closely might not realize the sheer number of talented athletes available to contribute.

With the loss of Ezekial Knight, Jimmy Johns, and Prince Hall (3 game suspension), most analysts can name only Rolando McClain as a starter. The truth is that several players are primed and ready to break out this year.

Cory Reamer (6’ 4”- 225), a rising Jr., will probably play next to McClain on the inside. A former safety, Reamer has beefed-up and appears ready to perform at the consistent level that SEC play requires. He lead all linebackers in the Spring game in tackles and displayed the same ball-hawking ability that he used to help his former high school team win state championships. Reamer is tough, having survived multiple knee surgeries. His reaction time and intelligence are his best assets. He is the sleeper of this year’s linebacker corps.

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Brandon Fanney (6 ’4” – 240), another rising Jr., has been getting ample playing time with the first unit. His athleticism and speed, along with his steady development over the past two years, will prove to be an SEC quality player.

Erik Anders (6’2”- 230), also a rising Jr., is a player who has the size and speed to play the Jack linebacker position or go inside to spell McClain or Reamer. He will probably see some playing time, at least until Prince Hall becomes available (after Hall’s three-game suspension is over).

Alex Watkins (6’3”- 220 red-shirt Fr.) and Chavis Williams (6’4”- 220 So.) have been impressive at times on the outside. Both are extremely talented – having the speed to rush the quarterback, as well as cover receivers downfield. These two will be given a chance to show that they are ready to compete.

There are two more players currently on the roster who have the ability to contribute from a depth standpoint. Jennings Hester (6’2” – 225 r.s.Fr.) from Atlanta has earned the chance to jump into the rotation, and Charlie Higginbotham (6’1” – 210 So.) – although a bit under-sized – is good enough to spell players and contribute on special teams.

Finally, and most importantly, three incoming freshmen are expected to push everybody – except McClain – for a starting spot. Jerrell Harris (6’2” – 220) was recruited by every “big time” school in the country for a good reason. He is a gifted outside-linebacker and brings every tool in the shed to the field. Harris will probably start at strong-side linebacker when the season opens against Clemson in Atlanta. Don’ta Hightower (6’3” 250) played tailback in high school. He has the body of a seasoned SEC linebacker and has a good shot at being the #1 back-up to McClain and Reamer. Courtney Upshaw (6’ 2” – 220) is cut from the same mold as Harris but will start his career inside at Alabama. He is a hard hitter and possesses strong field awareness for a young player.

We can summarize by saying that Alabama has plenty of talent at the line-backing position. However, most of the players are unproven with little actual playing time. I think that by the time Alabama hits mid-season form, the defense will be a much improved stop-unit. By season’s end, the linebackers could be the Crimson Tide’s best defensive assets.

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93 Comments

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  1. 1
    IhateGeorgeW.

    You must first consult the college football experts first, before making this sort of assessment: the down home barnzoes.

    I’m sure Alabama Tech’s finest and most loyal Wire Road trailer trash, known as Kevin, has some envious fury he feels led to take out on Nick Saban here. The reason being is his mother/husband left him for his sister last Thursday, and it’s tearing him apart limb by limb. We certainly can’t hold that against him!

  2. 3
    ATL Tider

    George and Trackem, let’s not get too carried away just yet.

    Our defense certainly won’t work miracles this season, but I don’t expect them to be any worse than they were last year.

    Nice post, Shane!

  3. 4
    Ballplay Indian

    I dont know about the best group on defense, but they should be the most improved.. In a couple of years, they will be a force…

    Count this as my sig….Youtube alabama man action figure….

  4. 6
    TiderInsider

    It’s time to start experimenting in my opinion. Maybe some of the incoming freshman should be tested on the playing field to see how bad they want a position where talent is crucially needed. If they want it bad enough, they deserve it. If they go to great lengths to land a position, imagine what they’d do for a win. When McClain returns, make him fight to have that starting position handed back to him. Let’s see how hungry these guys really are.

    What could it hurt after all?

  5. 7
    Ballplay Indian

    T.I. Im sure that Mclain will have to earn his spot…I just cant see anyone taking it from him. He is an exceptional linebacker.

  6. 8
    Bama Fan In NYC

    I don’t think Saban is as big of an incompetent moron as the Barnies proclaim him to be.

    If a kid is showing potential at an individual position, especially where potential is needed, they will receive the starting nod.

    The smart thing to do would be to redshirt him, buying him more time for the future, but we’re not the guy(s) in charge, so in all actuality, our opinions aren’t worth page their posted on 😉

  7. 9
    SHANE'S PAIN

    ATL Tider,

    Do you mean they could actually be worse than last year? That would be almost impossible especially within the “process”!

    Shane,

    Where do you get all this inside information? Do you actually deliver ice to the Bama practises? You are certainly smarter than most give you credit for. You have actually already planted the seed for when the defense crumbles by the second or third game of the year. I can hear it now, “With all the injuries and suspensions to the Crimson Tide, is really fair to judge this team that has been forced by outside circumstances to play such inexperienced players?”

    Better hope nothing happens to McClain or Arkansas Sate going to look better than Louisiana Monroe!

  8. 10
    LCN

    He’s smarter than you’ll ever be.
    His occupation is your dream job because cleaning up the dog feces in your dad’s yard doesn’t pay well does it?

  9. 11
    CrimsonBrother

    Shane, I see you took Finebaum’s lead from Wednesday’s show. Don’t Gang up and “BEAT DOWN” Pine Box (Tub) and the little Aubie Nation about the Furr Gang.
    Why should anyone put pressure on Pine Box to answer any questions when the going gets tough? But Pine Box sure does like answering questions when the going is easy.

    I want Pine Box to answer two questions.

    1. How many players jumped Furr.

    2. Did the coaching staff order the fight.

    Pine Box needs to answer these two questions and stop running from it.
    The so called Media should start asking these two questions untill Pine Box gives a legit answer. Pine Box needs to MAN up and tell us what happened, after all he is the head coach.

    Shane, it’s amazing to me how you get these General Lee County cockroaches out from under their rock’s.

  10. 12
    Warbird

    My old pal Oval-Shane, where do you get this Shaneola? On the one hand, you are always cracking on Shula’s recruits. Well guess what, the “rising juniors” that you mention are Shula recruits. Are they all of sudden world beaters? Which way is it?

    On the other hand, I hope Little Nicky is forced to play freshman in this league. I’ll take my Jr., Sr. and rsSr. over any freshman players anyday. Men against boys, folks, men against boys…

    Sorry, gotta go take a Shane. Fear the Toes!

  11. 13
    Warbird

    CB, what is this, a replay of some Hollywood movie?

    Crimson Bro: Did you order a code red on Private Furr?

    CTT: Move on. Next question.

    Crimson bro: Did you order a code red on Private Furr?

    CTT: I gave you the answer. What do you want from me?

    Crimson Bro: I want the truth!

    CTT: You can’t handle the truth. Seven is coming!

  12. 14
    Shane is a BLOGGER

    CrimsonBro, two questions for you.

    (1) Where will you be after Auburn BEATS DOWN the crimson sisters in Tuberville/Dennie Stadium?

    (2) Will you be watching when the barnies are Rolling Bear Bryant’s Statue?

  13. 15
    Michael

    Shane, seriously will you go be a Michigan fan somewhere up north or way out west. You are an embarasment to all Bama fans. We already have it bad enough with some of the trashy fans we have. But you, shane from center point living in your single wide with grandma and working at the nearest exxon are a disgrace. My 5 year old writes better material and he can’t read yet!

  14. 16
    Michael

    Shane is a blogger says, its Denny you dork. Go learn how to read and write. Going to Auburn won’t help either. Are barnies like the fat cow you are married to.

  15. 17
    Michael

    Next question actually meant “shut up I don’t want people to find out we had to pay a 4 star athlete to come to Au”. Seriously coach you guys didn’t have enough money to keep him there. What a bunch of losers.

  16. 19
    jack and coke

    Don’t you have to sell or snort coke to play linebacker at Alabama?
    I can’t wait to see Clemson run thru those pansies like sh*t thru a goose.
    Daddy Bowden got ya’ll last year, now it’s son’s turn…..

  17. 20
    Golden Eagle

    Shane, you are a perfect example why some animals eat their young. WDE

    It’s time to take a shane!!!

  18. 21
    Tider in Soonerland

    With a crop of highly rated recruits Saban in his second year at LSU had no problem playing younger players and going 10-3 his second year. If he can mold this team and utilize the new found talent everyone might be in for a surprise. I watched Bob Stoops take an Oklahoma team that had really fallen on hard times win a national championship his second year. Jim Tressel at Ohio State performed a similar feat and both have been competing nationally since. Those teams had the same things in common with UA now, rich tradition with a newer, better coach and better players. I believe Bama is going to surprise some people this year and show what’s coming down the pike. Football fortunes can change very fast these days.
    Roooolll Tide, Our day is Coming!

  19. 22
    Shane is a BLOGGER

    OK Machael you win,

    Tuberville/Dork Stadium

    jack and coke, do you think the bammurs could survive in the ACC?

  20. 23
    satsoomer

    The first guy on Shane’s list of linebackers-to-the-rescue (according to Shane) is a guy with blown out knees who was good in high school. No linebacker problems here.

  21. 24
    The BAMMER from St. Clair

    YO! Tider in Soonerland made a SOLID point. Saban completely changed the atmosphere around the LSU program and in 2001 (his second at Baton Rouge) they brought home the conference championship. Can ‘Bama win the SEC this year? I certainly think that the Tide can win the West. I’m not sure about the Championship, but the route to the Promised Land is getting clearer! It’s in sight! The future’s SO bright, I GOTTA wear shades! ROLL TIDE!!!

  22. 25
    IhateGeorgeW.

    I don’t think we’ll win the SEC West this year, but I firmly believe those General Lee County Alabama Tech Barnies are in for a nightmarish awakening when they lose their first ever game in T-Town as well as the first game in six years.

    It’ll be a long, quiet, and depressing trip back to Wire Road when it’s all said and done with.

  23. 26
    SHANE'S PAIN

    St Clair and Soonerland,

    What did Saban do his second year at Mich. State, what did he do his second year at the Dolphins?

    What he did his second year at LSU has absolutely no reflection on what he will do his second year at Bama.

    FEAR THE TIGERS…Clemson, LSU and especially Auburn. Bama will lose three games this year just to schools with Tiger mascots. Unless W. Kentucky or Ark. State are Tigers. Then it would be
    4 losses to TIGERS! Oops, forgot Kentucky. A Wildcat could be a Tiger…maybe 5 losses then!

    IT’S GREAT TO BE AN AUBURN TIGER!!!!

  24. 27
    Ballplay Indian

    Sure bama will win the west this year. Yall are bama, and you are back this year…It is A Sabans second year. That means he will win an SEC championship…Book it !!!!!!!!

  25. 28
    Shane is a BLOGGER

    The BAMMER from St. Clair Says: Saban completely changed the atmosphere around the LSU program.

    I know LSU and bama is no LSU. bama is a losing program.

  26. 30
    SHANE'S PAIN

    Slow down there Ballplay, Saby Baby’s second year at Michigan State he went 6-6 and lost the bowl game. His second year at the Dolphins(the year they were expected to go to the playoffs), he went 6-10. So his second year record as a head coach at any significant level, including LSU is……….21-19 and 1-1 in bowl games. He’s probably the last coach to ever back in to a national championship with 3 losses.

    What his record shows me is that when the going gets tough…he bails out. That’s the HUGE difference between Saby Baby and Tubs…when the going gets tough for Tubs, he digs in, holds his ground and becoames a better man and coach for it. He gains more respect from the fans and continues to keeping Auburn atop the NCAA. Seems Saby Baby takes the offers he so emphatically denies interest in. Saby Baby’s the John Gruden of the NCAA, full of crap. He’s the Chris Angel of the NCAA, an obnoxious illusionist. He’s the Obama of the NCAA, a star like-karma with no substance behind it.

    This year is going to be soooooo interesting in the mangled world that is ALABAMA football!!!!

    IT’S GREAT TO BE AN AUBURN TIGER!
    WAR DAMN EAGLE!
    KICK EM’ IN THE BUTT BIG BLUE!

  27. 32
    Ballplay Indian

    The bama players dont fight on the practice field, they buss caps in peoples asses..Thug U baby…

  28. 33
    Otto

    I think it’s hilarious how all the bammers are demanding Tuberville speak to the media when it’s perfectly fine for sa6an to tell the media to get lost.

    It doesn’t work both ways folks.

  29. 34
    tut blalock

    we’ll see if the questions are answered when these new guys prove they can stop the clemson tandem.

  30. 35
    SHANE'S PAIN

    Just looked at ESPNU.com and there was quite a nice picture of TT watching a blurred orange jersy speeding by. Head line was “Full Speed Ahead”. Below it was a link to “Nations Fastest Teams” Clicked there and here was the top 3:

    Which teams know how to use speed to their advantage? Here are the nation’s top tempo teams.

    1. Oregon
    The Ducks averaged 79 plays and 38.2 points per game despite finishing ninth in the Pac-10 in average time of possession (28 minutes, 37 seconds) in 2007. Get on the field, score your points and get off.

    2. Auburn
    Tempo guru and offensive coordinator Tony Franklin has brought his magic to the Plains this season. With a talented line and a bunch of good running backs, the effect should be immediate.

    3. Troy
    In the past two seasons, the Trojans have upset Oklahoma State (41-23 in 2007) and made Georgia (44-34 in 2007) and Florida State (24-14 in 2006) work much harder than they expected to. The equalizer? Offensive tempo.

    Shane, you better put those crimson glasses on and re-work that Bama linebacker garbage. You need to add words like “pray” and “please God help us” and replace words like “rising jr” and “could be” with words like “proven jr” and “better be”. Auburns going to run over, around and through Bama with new coordinators, worthless recruits and inexperienced quarterbacks. I am looking so forward to November!

    IT”S GREAT TO BE AN AUBURN TIGER!!!
    WAR DAMN EAGLE!!!
    KICK EM’ IN THE BUTT BIG BLUE!!!

  31. 36
    Dyesmoneyman

    Why is the Barn so obsessed that they feel the need to post on an Alabama website? It’s okey little brother. Your streak that has a big * next to the six will always be remembered as the mountaintop of Barner football. You can proudly tell yourself,that even though you could never emerge from the University’s shadow, you did beat their weakened program for a couple of years in a row. Name the stadium after Tubby and reveal in the biggest accomplishment your program has acheived in 115 years of playing football; finally beating Alabama.

  32. 37
    Ballplay Indian

    Dyesmoneyman…….Where do I start? Your one of the “weakened state” people too huh? when does that lame ass excuse stop? Shane said this year yall are “back”….But I have a feeling after we kick that tail again, that excuse will continue…..I hate to bust your bubble , deflate your ego, or wizz in your cheerios, but beating Bama is not an accomplishment…Yall suck at football….Dont act like this is a shock. cause you know its true…..Heck, LOUISIANA MONROOOOOOOOOOEEEEE beat yall last year….Les Miles was dead on. Its not a big deal to kick bamas ass. And , by the way, this is not the mountaintop of Auburn football…Not even close.

    Count this as my sig….Youtube ALABAMA MAN ACTION FIGURE………..

  33. 38
    The BAMMER from St. Clair

    YO! “Shane’s Pain,” why don’t y’all run Tuberville off and promote Tony Franklin to HC? According to ALL you Aubies, he’s the MAN! You talk about us Bammers and Saban; I see the same thing with Aubies and new AU HC Tony Franklin! Forget about Tubby! FRANKLIN’S THE MAN!

  34. 40
    Bamaman

    Playing with a Indian’s balls, if we suck at football what does that make you look like? I will tell you, UAT owns all the records over you Auturds, most consecutive wins, most wins, most points scored, bowl victories, National Championships LOL! Undisputed facts! So, go dream about Big Ears one SEC in thirteen years. Auturds suck! Roll Tide Baby!

  35. 41
    boss

    The Tide scrimage looked pretty good. JPW was more like 22 for 30. The publicly released stats were in-accurate. Julio Jones made a diving one finger catch, and was able to regain his footing and score on a 76 yard “broken play”. Look for he and JPW to connect plenty of times this year. They already act like they’ve been together for years. The linebacker play was awsome. You’re on the money Shane. Linebacker is the least of our worries. Bring on Clemson. I think we’re ready to play now….

  36. 43
    Ballplay Indian

    BamaMan….A whopping 5 game streak,when 90% of the games were on your homefield….I wouldnt brag…The all time series will belong to us in 10 more years…What will you say then?

  37. 44
    SHANE'S PAIN

    YO!! ST. Clair bafoon! Why run Tubs off? He’s the one constant at Auburn that has earned his keep. He’s the one that keeps the control tight. I was simply showing that the REAL media sees and reports the truth, while Shane and his cronies ON THIS BLOG(which is simply a link thru the Finebaum site, I’d never have know this site existed if it had not been linked) OUT OF DESPARATION are saying and doing every thing possible to put Tony in a bad light. The Bammers are the ones hoping and praying that something goes wrong at Auburn so Tubs and Franklin will get run off. So you see ST. CLAIR BAFOON, its the FEAR and TORMENT that TUBS has put into you guys that makes you say statements like the one above and makes Shane write an article insinuating the SEC has put the cuffs on Franklin when in fact all they have done is stopped him from selling his highly sought after offensive system. TUBS has so controlled Alabama football over the last decade ( go ahead, insert excuse here) that he’s gotten you and most of the BAFOON Bammers to the point of insanity and desparation. It is so funny!!!!

    IT’S GREAT TO BE AN AUBURN TIGER!!!
    WAR DAMN EAGLE!!!
    KICK EM’ IN THE BUTT BIG BLUE!!!(again)

  38. 45
    CrimsonBrother

    Shane, It’s Monday and I still see Pine Box is runnning from the questions about the Furr BEAT DOWN. Just like he ran from the questions about Chette Williams 501c3. Just like he ran from the questions about the CHOP-BLOCKS. Just like he ran from the questions about the Sociology cheating.

    I want Pine Box to answer two questions.

    1. How many players jumped Furr?

    2. Did the coaching staff order the fight?

    Pine Box doesnt answewr questions when the going is tough, only when the going is easy.

    Pine Box has been trying to bring back that old Miami Hurricane “WIN AT ALL COST” mentality since Saban showed up. Which leads to players taking cheap shots (chop-blocks) and ending careers. Which also usally leads to players and families of players getting paid thus NCAA PROBATION.

    “WIN AT ALL COST” might not cost much in the short term but it cost a lot in the end.

    Shane, it’s amazing to me how you get these General Lee County cockroaches out from under their rock’s.

  39. 46
    Ballplay Indian

    Crimson doosh…….You have a cametary of skeletons in that closet known as Bammer….Clean out that nasty SOB before you harp about some chop blocks, and inter team discipline…Do you really know what you sound like ? A doosh, that is what you sound like….Tubbs ordered the Furr beatdown..PFFFFFFFFTTTTTT….Come on man…Wake up….Tubbs would never risk his job for a young cocky punk….EVER !!…Heck, Im glad our team has some grit….There is a difference between our players and yours…Our players do thier talking on the field. Against opponents, and with one another.. Your guys.. They do thier talking to the D.A. plea bargaining a deal…

  40. 47
    BOX of PINE

    Yo, yo, yo, Crimson Bro.

    3 players jumped Furr within seconds of Tommy’s signal to Franklin who in turn signaled the first of the attackers to signal the other two attackers to jump Furr.

    As far as Chette goes…what was the question? Hasn’t your lover, I mean mentor Shane answered the question? What I do know is that he is paid well to mentor a top NCAA football program. In some eyes it may be an exorbinate amount, but you have to look at the return on the investment. Had Bama ever had someone in place that knew how to mentor young, cocky college athletes, then maybe they would not be in the shambles they are today. How much has it cost Bama to throw Johns off the team? A person of Chette’s demeanor may have turned him around and you bunch of Bitter Bama Brothers wouldn’t have to rely on “promising Jr’s” to fill yet another linebacking position.

    What I would like to ask you is simple.

    1. How many players are in the cocaine ring w/ Johns?

    2. Did the coaching staff order distribution of cocaine? After all, Saban did get the hell out of Miami while lying about leaving until he stepped on the hallowed grounds of Tuscaloosa and quickly proclaimed “the process” has begun.

    A chopblock (roughly translated)is Chineeeeeese for what we Americans call a cutting board. It is simply a piece of hardwood used to chop meats, vegetables, nuts, etc. usually used in stir fry.

    I think this is the last answer you requested. It concrened Sociology cheating. Sociology cheating is the method for which habitual liars continually run their mouths with excuses about circumstances that no longer matter. Example 1: 12 national championships – means nothing in the day to day world of NCAA football. It is used by pathetic habitual liars to make themselves feel better about CURRENT issues decades after the fact. Example 2: Probation – habitual lying and excuses for current statis based on events of the past while all the time denying the truth or guilt of the past judgement. These are just two rather simple examples of Sociological cheating.

    Do you need any other questions answered so a 2nd grader can undertsand them?

  41. 48
    Warbird

    Crimson Buffoon, I’ve already given you CTT’s answers to your questions — YOU CAN’T HANDLE THE TRUTH!

    FEAR THE TOES!

  42. 49
    boss

    I hear good things from practice today. JPW sure seems to be adapting well to Major Applewhite’s offense. It should be a good year. Bring on number 13

  43. 50
    The BAMMER from St. Clair

    YO! “Shane’s Pain,” once again you are WAY off base. I don’t want Tubby or Franklin “ran off.” I WANT THEM RIGHT WHERE THEY ARE. There’s a reason why AU’s recruiting was down in the rankings this past February. Tubby was shopping himself around! All the “talk” about the possibility of Tubby and Texas A&M and Arkansas was more than just “talk.” The man wants out. Its as simple as that. He knew when ‘Bama hired Saban that the “times were-a-changin.” There’s only one reason that A&M and Arkansas wouldn’t hire him; that huge BUYOUT in his contract! Tuberville ain’t stupid. When Saban was at LSU, he only had to recruit against Saban once in a while, mainly in the Mobile area. Its different now. We are talking about one-on-one, mano-a-mano, year-in, year-out in Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia and Florida. Tubby knows the going has got TOUGHER! I WANT TUBS AT AUBURN! Once we get this thing turned around and when the BUYOUT becomes reasonable that brand-new house in Auburn WILL BE ON THE MARKET! Bank on it (pardon the pun). LATER!

  44. 51
    jack and coke

    bammer from st clair:
    Tubb’s has about 5 more years to coach. You’re spouting off all this, do you know the man?
    Do you know his thoughts? Yes, Arkansas and A & M came for Tubbs. He presented the options to his coaches, made his recomendations, and they decided to stay at Auburn for the remainder of his career. Nick Saban had nothing, and I assure you, NOTHING to do with Tommy’s decision.
    Folks like you who hide behind their keyboard and type out pure lies are a disgrace.

  45. 54
    Brent Speigner

    I love how whenever a bammer talks he always speaks of the “past” or the “future.” You never hear about right now, because there is never a right now in bammer nation. How bout this: we’re good right now, and are going to whip yalls ass once again this year at our “second home.”

  46. 55
    Boss

    Brent, just you wait until our new recruits hit the field this year. i only see us losing one game. we will return to prominance where we rightfully belong. our winning tradition will guide us

  47. 56
    SHANE'S PAIN

    YO! “Bafoon from St. Clair,” once again you are WACKED OUT. I never once said you wanted to run Tubs off, you said “why don’t y’all run Tuberville off and promote Tony Franklin to HC?” I believe I answered that question quite thoroughly. We do believe Franklin is “the man”. “The man” that will take this inept offense (since 2004 when TUBS put three recruits in the first round of the NFL) to the next level to compete in the SEC with the TRUE ELITE programs like FLORIDA, LSU, GEORGIA, TENNESSEE and yes, AUBURN. Bama doesn’t belong there. These are the teams that have held that status for the last 12 or 15 years, not Bama. I’m sure because you are a Blind Bama Bafoon, you would never admit that you would like to see Tommy leave. You would, like jack and coke said rather hide behind a key board and babble on about how good the future looks because you have another new coach to latch onto like a blood sucking leach that won’t let go until somebody puts the fire to your ass. This almighty recruiting class Saban has, how many are not going to be there this year? In 4 years if Saban is still there and puts 3 first rounders into the NFL, then I might respect this class but until that happens, you just keep kidding yourself.

    A so-called top-notch recruiting class does absolutely nothing for me. I am so glad Bama picked Saban. I’m not sure picked is the right word since he was seemingly an afterthought after being turned down by other people. Lou Saban has a National Championship at LSU, not Bama. The LSU NC was handed to him on a Gold and Purple tray. Even then he managed to loose 3 games that year. I will gladly admit that I’m glad Spurrier turned down the job. I’m glad Rodriguez turned down the job. They are both superior coaches to Saban!!!!

    Keep secretly hoping that Tubs will leave, get run off or die because he will. This day and time it will be rare to see a coach pull the wool over the eyes of the fan base as long as Bear, Bobby and Joe Pa have.

    IT’S GREAT TO BE AN AUBURN TIGER!!!
    WAR DAMN EAGLE!!!
    KICK ‘EM IN THE BUTT BIG BLUE!!! AGAIN!!!

  48. 57
    Ballplay Indian

    Boss, Applesauce and muschamp BOTH went to Texas…..You woud think that someone who keeps up with Bama should know that…

  49. 59
    polytech

    It’s amazing to me how all you cow tippin barners call Shane a loser(which maybe he is) but you just can’t wait to flame away after his blog is posted. So who is real losers here. Maybe you don’t have anything better to do since your girlfriend/sister/mom ran off with your boyfriend/brother/dad/pet goat.

  50. 60
    boss

    I’m glad our players don’t fight like they do down at the cow college.
    The football field is no place for that sort of temper or agressiveness.
    They are clearly out of control.
    Maybe now we can beat Georgia since they got one of their linemen hurt. I’m hearing good things from the tight end play. Ron Middleton has them playing ball.

  51. 61
    boss

    I’m glad our players don’t fight like they do down at the cow college.
    The football field is no place for that sort of temper or agressiveness.
    They are clearly out of control.
    Maybe now we can beat Georgia since they got one of their linemen hurt. I’m hearing good things from the tight end play. Ron Middleton has them playing ball.

  52. 62
    boss

    Shane, What did you find out about Deon Furr transferring. I heard their was some problems with his recruiting. I heard Chette Williams was involved. I heard that Deon’s daddy was going to talk. What have you heard Shane. I bet you know something.

  53. 64
    The BAMMER from St. Clair

    YO! “Shane’s Pain” and “jack & coke;” first of all “pain boy,” in 2003 LSU went 12-1 en route to the NC. I don’t know where you find 3 losses when only one occurred. Must be that Auburn math. “Jack & coke,” since you chimed in let me EMPHASIZE that there were serious talks concerning Tubby leaving. I’ve talked with some A&M fans and he was high on their wish list. He was defensive coordinator out there for a while under R.C. Slocum. The talk from some of the “movers & shakers” connected with Aggie Football was the expensive buyout in Tubby’s AU contract. As for Arkansas, I’m sure Tubby went up there to hunt. Two subjects come to mind-ducks and the possibility of the Arkansas job. He is a native Arkansan. Once again, the buyout is just too expensive at this time. You say he has 5 years left and if I’m not mistaken in 2 or 3 years the buyout will be reasonable as compared to other buyout clauses in coaches’ contracts around the country. Make no mistake…if the right job comes open Tubby will definately listen and BOLT! Later.

  54. 65
    The BAMMER from St. Clair

    YO! Once more, I DON’T WANT TUBBY TO LEAVE! I WANT AUBURN AND TUBERVILLE TO FACE AN ALABAMA TEAM THAT’S LOADED WITH TALENT AND ITS GONNA HAPPEN. Maybe sooner than y’all think! Later.

  55. 66
    SHANE'S PAIN

    Bafoon from St. Clair:

    You are correct, Saban did go 13-1 when he was handed a team to take to a NC. He was 9-3 the year after with the “talent” HE actually brought in. Apparently his “talent” wasn’t very good as he “BOLTED” to the NFL. Glad to see Miles was able to do something with them. I didn’t see any UNDEFEATED season’s in his record. Even Terry Bowden was able to do that with an inherited team!

    What is Saban’s buyout. I hope he’s there for a long time. He has proved nothing to me. He got an NC with someone else’s team. He got a #1 recruiting class according to so-called recruiting guru’s. Let’s see what he can do with them. You see, it’s not what you are labeled by fans, media and Shane, it’s what you accomplish at the end of the year.

    You said, “I DON’T WANT TUBBY TO LEAVE! I WANT AUBURN AND TUBERVILLE TO FACE AN ALABAMA TEAM THAT’S LOADED WITH TALENT AND ITS GONNA HAPPEN.” Again, you are correct…yea it’s “gonna happen” this year…Bama is always on the schedule…very bold prediction there slick! What’s gonna happen??? Do you really think Alabama, a Jr. Varsity team filled with freshmen, a couple of decent linemen and a quarteback that worries more about what his hair looks like than the key interception he just threw is going to beat a team with poise, and the integrity of an Auburn team? Keep living the pipe dream, whatever pipe your smokin’!

  56. 67
    Harley2

    Here is the lowdown on Nick Saban. I see you two guys arguing about it. Here is what Beano Cook had to say when Saban was hired at Bama:
    Comments made by ESPN analyst Beano Cook the day Alabama hired Nick Saban — “Alabama just overpaid. Saban had one great year in the SEC. Otherwise pretty average record. At least two to four losses per year. SEC is a better conference now that it was when Saban was last in it two years ago.” . . . “Coaching in the SEC is the best in the nation.” . . . “LSU is a better job than Alabama.” . . . “Auburn is a problem for Bama.” . . . “Alabama has more fans than Auburn, but Auburn’s fans are more loyal. And more realistic.”
    Sounds about right to me.

  57. 68
    Boss

    You’re the man Shane. Hurry and write another column. Update us on the Deon Furr situation. I heard there was a big pay-off. I heard Tubb’s also is planning a big trip to Arkansas this year. I bet he’s coaching there next year. COme on SHane.

  58. 69
    SHANE'S PAIN

    Thank you Harley2! I like to think it’s the Bama Boy that argues…I, like Beano, just tells it like it is!

  59. 70
    Ballplay Indian

    Boss…You ought to here yourself…Have you no shame? Shane , you tell em ….Shane your the man…Shane I love you….The man love is sickening…

  60. 71
    JohnInHuntsville

    Shane,

    Nice job. Just enough to make little brother wet themselves, but not too much to bring on the full cowturd onslaught.

  61. 72
    The BAMMER from St. Clair

    YO, PEOPLE! “Shane’s Pain,” once again you are NAIVE about Nick Saban. You say he inherited his NC team. Well, YOU’RE WRONG AGAIN! Saban’s 1st season at LSU was 2000. Let’s see-2000…2001…2002…2003. While there may have been a few holdovers from Gerry DiNardo’s stay in Baton Rouge, most of those guys were Saban & Co.’s recruits. Therefore it was not an “inheritance.” Give the guy credit-THIS GUY CAN RECRUIT! Unlike many of my fellow Bammers, I don’t consider Coach Saban the greatest coach alive, but I will say that he is 1 of 7 or 8 of the best in college football. I’ll even throw a compliment to Tuberville. Personally, I think he’s one of the top 10 or 11. That’s the difference between a fan and a school-hater. As a fan, I am willing to show a little CLASS and give a man credit when he’s accomplished something. School-haters like YOU live to BASH, BASH, and BASH SOME MORE! You’re like that goofy I-Man that calls Finebaum’s show and makes all Aubies look bad. Oh, wait…MAYBE YOU ARE I-MAN! Later!

  62. 76
    SHANE'S PAIN

    YO! BAMMER from ST. CLAIR: I believe you to be NAIVE about Saby Baby. He won the NC in his 4th year at LSU with core senior leadership that he did not recruit. His first year w/ his players (5th as HC) he went 9-3 and then left those guys and the fan base that he had
    actually gained the respect of. I’ve never BASHED his recruiting ability, I DISRESPECT HIS LOYALTY!!!!! Any coach that is hired at an Elite SEC school inherits quality football. He did inherit the LSU team. Had he stayed at LSU after his 9-3 team and continued to keep them at the elite status, I may feel differently about the man. He didn’t…I don’t! He was mediocre (at best) at Michigan S. He was decent at LSU. He was pathetic in the NFL. He has not proven anything to me to be considered an elite coach in the NCAA.

    I DO NOT hate the University of ALABAMA. I respect the school and it’s history. Where my frustration lies is in the disrespect or plain ignorance that typical Bammers, like you, Shane and most of the Crimson Cronies on this site display toward NCAA football. National Championships’s, SEC Championships, Rivalry Championships (Iron Bowl) are wonderful ideals to enjoy and reflect on but last year and this year are all that matter unless there is a “streak” involved. Bama has no streak unless you count one decent recruiting class as a streak.

    I just tire of the same old lines, crap and excuses you Bammer types hide behind or use to defend the pathetic mess that IS Alabama football of today, this decade, this century…however you’d like to deny it. I don know one thing for certain…

    IT”S GREAT TO BE AN AUBURN TIGER!!!

    WAR DAMN EAGLE!!!

    KICK EM’ IN THE BUTT BIG BLUE!!! AGAIN!!!

  63. 77
    The BAMMER from St. Clair

    YO! “Shane’s Pain,” how can you bash Saban’s loyalty when you have a coach (Tuberville) that told the media when questioned about leaving Ole Miss that they would have to carry him “out in a pine box.” Next thing you know he’s the HC at Auburn! That’s loyalty? I think not! As for the 2003 LSU team, Saban and his staff are credited by practically everybody that follows/covers college football. You’re the first I’ve encountered that is not willing to give him any credit for what was accomplished at LSU. Dude, I know a LOT of AU fans and consider all of them friends for 364 out of 365 days a year, but you are a different breed. You’re a HATER! You may not hate the University of Alabama, but you hate Saban! Saban hasn’t done anything that any other coach (including Tubby)hasn’t already done. As for ignorance concerning college football, I’ll be the first to admit that many fans don’t understand anything except WINNING. Are there ‘Bama fans that are unrealistic? YES. Has college football changed since Bear Bryant roamed the sidelines? OF COURSE. I’m 42 years old, and I have encountered ignorant fans, but anyone who knows me would not accuse me of being ignorant concerning the game. Anyway, ROLL TIDE! Later.

  64. 78
    FOOTBALL FAN

    SHANE, IT IS REFRESHING THAT YOU TOOK YOUR STUBBY LITTLE CRAYON AND WROTE SOMETHING WITHOUT CRITICIZING OTHER TEAMS IN THE SEC. IF YOU COULD ONLY KEEP YOUR SEPTIC MOUTH SHUT WHEN YOU CALL IN TO THE RADIO SHOWS WOULD PREVENT ME FROM CHANGING CHANNELS WHEN YOU ARE SPOUTING YOUR MENIAL TRIPE.

    WHY DON’T YOU TAKE A SABATICAL, SINCE IN YOUR OWN MIND YOU BELIEVE YOU ARE A Phd WITH A HIGH SCHOOL EDUCATION.

  65. 79
    Ballplay Indian

    Crimson Brother…I dont cuss (other than an occasional arse dam or sheet) , so why would my mouth get washed out? Someone punching me in the eye would be a more descrpiptive action.

  66. 80
    CrimsonBrother

    I told you little Aubie’s not to click on CrimsonBrother above. That web site is for THE BAMA NATION’S eyes only.

    Pine Box, it’s Friday and your still running from my two questions.

    1. How many players jumped Furr.

    2. Did the coaching staff order the fight.

    Pine Box, all these little Aubie’s on here are geting tired of answering your questions.

    12 National Championships
    21 Southeastern Conference Championships
    ROLL TIDE ROLL!

    Shane, it’s amazing to me how you get these General Lee County cockroaches out from under their rock’s.

  67. 82
    jack and coke

    John in Huntsville. If I were you I’d still be hiding after the beatdown that redneck Charles from Reeltown gave you.

  68. 83
    auburnfan33

    all bammers concerning us fighting on the field.
    our players fight while in practice
    bama players fight in a bar over stupid sheet. sorry bammers if you dont see the difference. if you knew anything about football, most coaches like to see that, it shows them the players are being aggressive.
    auburn doesnt have pussies for players like bama does.
    as for tubbs not being loyal this is his 10th year at auburn
    name the last coach that lasted that long at bama. my answer is bear
    another thing we had a sorry coach go undefeated in 93 while on probabtion.
    bama gets on probabtion. the players hide in a hole and cry all night and then the fans still make that excuse when we beat you.

  69. 84
    Brent from Auburn

    This article shows just how absolutely delusional Shane is, even more so than his expectations of an SEC west title this year.

  70. 85
    TrueCrimson

    Shane,

    I know that you are a football fan, not a trained journalist, and I don’t get upset by an occasional grammatic error or misspell in your column. But the posters on this forum have the uncanny ability to make your blog look like Shakespeare in comparison.

    I prefer for you to write these columns that focus on the actual Crimson Tide football squad. That is the real story in the SEC now. I don’t have much interest in what’s going on at Auburn. The Aubies are currently in the second stage of their own “process” — The Five Stages of Grief:

    1) Denial: Example – “I feel fine.”; “This can’t be happening.”

    2) Anger: Example – “Why me? It’s not fair!” “NO! NO! How can you accept this!”

    3) Bargaining: Example – “Just let me live to see my children graduate.”; “I’ll do anything, can’t you stretch it out? A few more years.”

    4) Depression: Example – “I’m so sad, why bother with anything?”; “I’m going to die . . . What’s the point?”

    5) Acceptance: Example – “It’s going to be OK.”; “I can’t fight it, I may as well prepare for it.”

    They know what is coming. Let them enjoy their last hurrah. November will arrive soon enough and that will carry them through the next three stages.

    Mike Shula did recruit some good ball players while he was at the Capstone. The cupboard wasn’t completely bare when Saban arrived. Their problem last year had more to do with the lack of a championship attitude among the team than with lack of talent. That problem is being corrected.

    I am not ready to spout empty boasts about what the Tide will accomplish this season. We in the Bama Nation don’t own any bragging rights until the kids in the Crimson Jerseys prove their dominance on the field of play.

    That said, I do have the quiet confidence that the program is finally moving in the right direction. Don’t be fooled by Bama fans speaking softly — they carry a very big stick. I can’t wait for this football season to kick off.

    It’s great to be a Bama Fan. Always has been — always will be!

    RTR!!!

  71. 86
    Ballplay Indian

    True Crimson…Let me enlighten you on the 5 stages of bammer fandom…

    Stage 1….Make excuse after excuse on why you suck….Blame it on the evil NCAA, Shula, Phil Fulmer, Weakened state, etc. etc. etc.

    Stage 2….Sell your dignity and and flea from common sense, to overpay by about 3 million a year to a coach of fortune….

    Stage 2…..Thump your chest on every given opportunity about your rival being “skeered” of their impending doom..Bring up 12 (ahem “bogus”) national championships. Also brag about being the “Cruitin” national champs….

    Stage 3……Get ass kicked again for a full year. Go 7-6 again (the norm)….Talk about next year…Brag again of rivals impending doom.

    Stage 4….Lose third Iron bowl under Saban. Talk about your “weakened state” some more…Talk about kicking ass next year….Murmerings about Saban start to grow legs….

    Stage 5….Lose fourth straight under Saban….Fire Saban…Pay 10 mill a year for Rich Rod….Talk about being “back” next year..Talk about your “weakened state” some more.

    The delusion of Bammer football continues…..

  72. 87
    SHANE'S PAIN

    Let me focus on the actual Crimson Tide football squat: The 8 stages of denial, grief and depression are as follows:
    #1 2000
    #2 2001
    #3 2002
    #4 2003
    #5 2004 (especially 2004)
    #6 2005
    #7 2006
    #8 2007

    They know what is coming. Let them enjoy their glint of hope. November will arrive soon enough and that will carry them into the next three stages that spiral into suicide.

    Don’t be fooled by Bama fans speaking softly — they carry a very big stick cause that’s all they got.

    IT’S GREAT TO BE AN AUBURN TIGER!!!
    WAR DAMN EAGLE!!!
    KICK EM’ IN THE BUTT BIG BLUE!!! AGAIN!!!

  73. 88
    TrueCrimson

    I love the smell of fear in the early Fall!

    It’s okay lil’ brothers. When nobody any longer remembers Auburn, you can still tell people that you’re from Alabama.

    RTR!!!

  74. 90
    TrueCrimson

    Brent,

    If you were older, you would remember how it feels. It’s not pleasant — I can tell you that.

    You guys have done well to put together a string of victories against the Crimson Tide. I can’t blame you for being proud of that. Few have done it.

    You should maintain some humility, however, until such time as you actually hold the record for having the longest uninterrupted win streak in this series. That record still belongs to Bama — as do so many others.

    Best of luck to the Tigers this year. I look forward to returning to a time when Auburn and Alabama once again establish who is the best team in the SEC when they play the last game on their regular season schedule.

    RTR!!!

  75. 91
    SHANE'S PAIN

    I love the stinch in the air of a decomposed football program around Tuscaloosa in the Fall especially the intensity it grows to in November!

    It’s okay lil’ sisters. SINCE NOBODY any longer remembers Alabama beyond the gymnastics team, you can still tell people that you had The Bear!

    IT’S GREAT TO BE AN AUBURN TIGER!!!
    WAR DAMN EAGLE!!!
    KICK EM’ IN THE BUTT BIG BLUE!!! AGAIN!!!

  76. 92
    jack and coke

    True Crimson:
    Thank you. I’m an Auburn fan I and too look forward to both schools being strong. I have never understood the logic that some fans preach, that if Alabama is up then Auburn is down, and vice versa. Some of the best games were when Coach Dye went agaist Coach Stallings.

  77. 93
    TrueCrimson

    An Honest Analysis:

    I think that Alabama and Auburn are both great unknowns this year.

    I find it strange that both Auburn and LSU were given such high marks at the SEC Media Days. Auburn fans are outraged that some guy in North Carolina didn’t list them on his pre-season AP Top Twenty-Five Poll.

    Auburn has had slightly better than mediocre seasons for the past 2 years. They have a new Offensive Coordinator and a new Defensive Coordinator. They bring in a new offensive scheme for which they have had only one year to recruit players to fit the scheme. They have one Quarterback with limited experience, another with no experience and they can’t seem to decide which one will be the starter. Aside from the Auburn brand name, what qualifies them to be ranked in a pre-season poll?

    I heard the argument that LSU is in the same situation. Not exactly. They won the National Championship last year. (I know that Auburn played them close last year — so did Bama.) They do have a new Defensive Coordinator and they did lose their starting Quarterback in the Spring.

    But… and this is a big but. (pardon the pun) They don’t bring a radically new defensive philosophy. Auburn’s OC was fired for non-performance, not because he got a better offer from another school. Perrilloux had limited experience, but he was definitely the starter. That said, he was a known problem child and I doubt that the LSU coaches didn’t have backup plans all along in case he didn’t make it through the season. It was to their benefit to lose him in the Spring versus during the season. LSU has a lot of talent to surround a new, untested Quarterback. Still, I wouldn’t be shocked if they have an off year in 2008.

    Alabama? They have some good, young talent. The key word there is “young”. They had to endure yet another, in a long line, of coaching changes last year and they seemed to fall apart at mid-season. They also have a new Offensive Coordinator to adjust to this year. They have the advantage of an experienced, Senior Quarterback. You can poke fun at JP all you want, but he has put up some impressive numbers. He will be taking the field behind the most talented and experienced Offensive Line that has played for the Crimson Tide since at least 2005 (before JB Closner broke his leg). There is a decent stable of healthy, experienced Running Backs and a solid group of Receivers available to him.

    The big question, as Shane pointed out, is the Linebackers. If some of these unknown players can match the performance of true Freshman Rolando McClain in the 2007 season, then they might do well. We’ll just have to wait and see. Bama has more depth at every position than they did last year and I anticipate an improvement in overall team chemistry.

    Even with all of the unknowns surrounding Auburn, LSU and Alabama — I am of the opinion that these three teams represent the Best of the West. That seems to be the consensus view of most pigskin prognosticators. I think that trying to rank them beyond that is just guesswork.

    If I had to hazard a guess as to the eventual winner of the Division, I would have to give the nod to LSU simply because of their performance last year. Then again, they had very good teams for the past two years and they will field a very different group of players this year. I think that we’ll just have to wait and see how it all shakes out.

    RTR!!!

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