Briefing: Alabama news & notes

Today was filled with interesting tidbits. DeMeco Ryans endows a scholarship, the Auburn family was exposed for what it is and Alabama signs a volleyball star. On to the news and notes.

What is it about the Auburn family and unethical or at least questionable conduct? broke the latest news on the scandal-plagued university; the report revealed the NCAA is looking into Auburn’s Tiger Prowl. Yikes. Can you say establishing a pattern of conduct? Problems at Auburn seem to be a typical thing. Cam Newton is a piece of crap, the Auburn family through and Jeffrey Lee along with Auburn nutcase John Stancil and Auburn fanatic Doug Goodwin have smeared a teenage recruit and his family for having the audacity to pick the Alabama Crimson Tide over Auburn. Now we see politically connected members of the Auburn family are getting a nice fat $13 million no-bid contract. According to the report by the Huntsville Times, “Dr. Paul Hubbert, executive director of the Alabama Education Association, said he was ‘shocked that those kind of dollars are flowing to a private entity.'” And more, “There has to be something more involved,” he said. “There’s no education program that I know of that you send that kind of money to. I’ve been around schools for a long time and I’ve never heard of it.” Want to know the names of the involved parties? Click the link.

VIDEO: Prep Volleyball – La Quinta’s Simone Henderson Alabama Bound

La Quinta High School volleyball said goodbye to one of their all-time greats… and she’ll say hello to the University of Alabama this fall. Simone Henderson inked her national letter of intent to play for the Crimson Tide.

DeMeco Ryans Pledges $300,000 Scholarship Gift (courtesy of UA)
Ryans donates scholarship gift for a deserving football student-athlete studying in the Culverhouse College of Commerce and Business Administration.

As Alabama football stars go, few have made as unlikely a rise to the top of the game as DeMeco Ryans. A native of Bessemer, Ala., Ryans rose from a three-star recruit to Consensus All-America status for the Crimson Tide as a senior linebacker in 2005.

Ryans, one of the Tide’s most decorated players on and off the field, was the prototype of the modern student-athlete, and he continues to make a difference in his hometown of Bessemer and at the University of Alabama. Ryans announced today a pledge for a scholarship gift of $300,000 to endow a full scholarship in Ryans’ name for a deserving football student-athlete studying in the Culverhouse College of Commerce and Business Administration.

“DeMeco Ryans made a tremendous difference as one of the finest players to ever wear Crimson and White,” said University of Alabama President Dr. Robert E. Witt. “With this gift he will continue to make a tremendous impact for the team and the University.”

“I am so very proud of one of our former players giving back,” said Mal Moore, Director of Athletics. “DeMeco’s generosity is the latest example of the support that so many of our former football players have given us throughout the years.”

“I have always wanted to do this since the day I left,” Ryans said. “The University of Alabama is such a special place to me, and I am honored to have the opportunity to endow a scholarship. I had a great time here, and I grew as a person here. This is a great time for me, and I am very excited.”

Ryans was a cum laude graduate of the University, receiving his bachelor’s degree in Business Marketing in December of 2005. In January of 2006, Ryans was awarded the NCAA’s Top VIII Award, recognizing outstanding achievement in athletics, scholarship and community service and given each year to only eight student-athletes nationwide.

As a student-athlete at Alabama, Ryans was the recipient of the 2005 Lott Trophy and was a four-time Academic All-SEC selection after graduating in just seven semesters. He closed his collegiate career with 307 career tackles, fifth on the Tide’s all-time list. He was the 2006 Cotton Bowl Defensive Most Valuable Player in a victory over Texas Tech. Ryans was named a 2005 Arthur Ashe, Jr., Sports Scholar. In 2005, Ryans was also a finalist for the Bednarik, Butkus, Draddy, Lombardi and Nagurski awards, as well as being named the 2005 SEC Player of the Year. He started 37 career games at Alabama before being drafted by the Houston Texans in the second round of the NFL Draft with the 33rd pick overall.

Ryans has continued to make an impact in his hometown of Bessemer, creating the DeMeco Ryans Foundation. The mission of the foundation is to create innovative programs that provide access to educational, recreational and healthy living initiatives designed to positively aid in the development of youth.

The Athletic Department at the University of Alabama is fully self-supporting. UA athletics receives no funding from the state of Alabama. Private support through the Crimson Tide Foundation enables UA athletics to increase its standing, in both athletics and academics, over competing universities beyond what can be accomplished with annual revenue from ticket sales, media rights and other licensing agreements.

Anyone wishing to contribute to the DeMeco Ryans Scholarship to donate to the Demeco Ryans Football Scholarship may do so at this link: