Alabama plays South Carolina this week, but fans have already started talking about Tennessee. When you combine the potential for distraction with the common homecoming distractions then you have a recipe for disaster. Can Alabama rise to the challenge? That is the question. Alabama Crimson Tide coach Nick Saban said this week, â€œItâ€™s going to be important for our players to do what they need to do so that we take care of our business, bounce back and not be satisfied with where weâ€™re at, but continue to work and improve as a team.â€
A site note: my grandmother died today at 93. We knew it was coming for about the last week or so. I’ll continue to update the blog over the next few days, but as it was today, the updates will be at odd times.
On to the links:
It will be interesting to see Mark Gottfried on camera calling SEC games. I hope it goes well for him.
The latest on homecoming festivities and Alabama’s prep for South Carolina courtesy of UA:
TUSCALOOSA â€“ The No. 2 Alabama football team wrapped up a tough week of practice with a 90-minute practice in shells inside the Hank Crisp Indoor Facility Thursday afternoon as preparations wind down for Saturdayâ€™s game with No. 22 South Carolina.
â€œSouth Carolina is a very good team, four points away from being undefeated this year and really playing well offensively,â€ Alabama head coach Nick Saban said. â€œThey have some really good balance in their offense. Their defense is outstanding. Eric Norwood is a fantastic player. They are playing really well on special teams. Theyâ€™ve got good team speed. Steve Spurrierâ€™s done a really good job with this team.
â€œItâ€™s going to be important for our players to do what they need to do so that we take care of our business, bounce back and not be satisfied with where weâ€™re at, but continue to work and improve as a team.â€
The game will be nationally televised by ESPN with kick off set for 6:45 p.m. (CDT) at Bryant-Denny Stadium. Brad Nessler, Todd Blackledge and Erin Andrews will describe the action. The game can also be heard on the Crimson Tide Sports Network, with Eli Gold, Phil Savage and Barry Krauss. The game can be heard locally on WFNN-FM (95.3) in Tuscaloosa.
HOMECOMING AT THE CAPSTONE: Alabama will celebrate its 89th homecoming this weekend when the Crimson Tide football team plays host to South Carolina.
The homecoming festivities begin Friday, Oct. 16 with the annual pep rally and bonfire on the UA Quad beginning at 7 p.m. The 2009 homecoming parade will begin in downtown Tuscaloosa on Saturday, Oct. 17 at 11:30 a.m.
â€œHomecoming is a great tradition,â€ Saban said earlier this week. â€œPeople have an opportunity to come back to something that they have a passion for, that they developed roots at and looked forward to the opportunity to come back to, just like we all look forward to our opportunity to go home anytime we have a chance. Once you become part of something that is bigger than yourself, like the University of Alabama, I know we have a lot of people that look forward to coming back to that and we certainly look forward to them coming back and hopefully our team will make their visit a positive one.â€
Alabama has compiled a 74-13-1 (.839) all-time homecoming record, including a 35-0 victory over Arkansas State last year. The Crimson Tide is riding a seven-game homecoming winning streak dating back to the 2002 season. This is the fourth time Alabama has faced South Carolina on homecoming, with the other three meetings taking place in 1942, 1966 and 1992.