Five Keys for (insert variable here)

It is the time of year when sportswriters provide helpful hints about the upcoming season via columns telling us five or ten interesting keys for the SEC team of your choice. I felt left out. So, I prepared a column with five keys for the Alabama Crimson Tide (or Auburn Tigers or Georgia Bulldogs or Florida Gators or Tennessee Volunteers or Ole Miss Rebels or LSU, or etc.)

1.Don’t turnover the football. (this is a universal)
2.Don’t get anyone important hurt. (this is a universal)
3.Don’t get penalties. (this is for everyone but especially Georgia)
4.Don’t have anyone important get arrested. (this is for everyone but especially Florida)
5.Make sure you only have 85 players on scholarship. (this is for everyone but especially Alabama)
Are there any other important things? We could talk about Alabama needing to secure its left tackle position, or speculate on how good Trent Richardson might be, but before camp begins in earnest it really does not do us any good.

If Alabama fans want a real clue about the upcoming season, it will come in the attitudes of players. Last season, for those who remember, a general consensus emerged out of Tuscaloosa that players were committed to a new beginning—they adopted the Process. Attitude will also determine how good the 2009 version of the Alabama Crimson Tide can be. If the players work as hard as last year’s team, good things can happen. If the players rest on the laurels of last year’s 12-0, then you can expect the 0-2 post-season record to be a better indicator of this year’s performance.

In other words, watch fall camp.