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BAMA Overcomes Adversity In A Big Way

BAMA Defeats Tennessee 41-17

Of all the issues surrounding this Crimson Tide football team the one that always seems to come up first is the lack of depth. It's a valid argument too. Our depth issues have been well documented and runs the full gambit, from poor recruiting decisions to scholarship limitations due to probation years. The defense has suffered the most during this time as year after year the coaching staff (whoever it is at the time) has failed to replenish depth with adequate numbers. Regrettably, the depth issue has reared its ugly head once again this week. But this time no one can blame the coaches.

Since we don't know all the facts yet we won't talk too much about the offenses, but it does appear that several Tide football players have made poor decisions recently regarding their playing futures at the University of Alabama. As a result of this head coach Nick Saban was forced to take action and suspend the offending members for the game today. As it stands now the length of the suspensions has not been determined, but one can only assume that the team's depth is going to take a hit atleast in the short-term.

Experiencing adversity and distraction while going into a game as big as the Tennessee game can often be disastrous. A lesser team might have just packed it in and start looking towards the next horizon. Not only did the BAMA staff and players not pack it in against a tough opponent today, the actually overcame the adversity. They faced the problem head on, looked it square in the face, and then rolled over it like a surging crimson flood en route to a stunning 41-17 blowout of rival Tennessee.

While Tide quarterback John Parker Wilson will likely get much of the attention for today's victory one cannot overlook the effort of the team as a whole. Most notably the effort of the offensive line. Over the last several years this part of the team has been brow-beaten, criticized, maligned and at times, just left for dead. What was a year ago an almost hopeless situation is quickly becoming one of the team's most consistent strengths. What makes the play of the offensive line even that much more impressive today was the fact that they lined up and did it without one of their horses. While Antoine Caldwell was serving his suspension today the rest of the BAMA offensive linemen played so well that the team was able to rack up over 500 yards of total offense against the Volunteer defense today. Not only was John Parker Wilson allowed enough time to stand in the pocket and complete a gaudy 32 passes for 363 yards, the BAMA runners found holes that would have allowed Lou Holtz to run for a huge day. BAMA tailback Terry Grant paced the Tide rushing attack today with an impressive 104 yards on 26 carries. Grant saw the majority of the action today because current starter Glen Coffee was also suspended for the game.



Signature win anyone? Call it what you want to at this point. I know it's a phrase we've all become familiar with since Mike Shula took over the Tide, but one thing is for certain here; the difference between Mike Shula's Tide and the one currently coached by Nick Saban is like night and day. It's apples and oranges and the situation today just underscores that in my mind. Had this been last year's coaching staff this team could have easily folded like cheap K-Mart lawn chairs. If not fold, the very best we could have expected was another moral-crushing defeat by playing just well enough to lose again to a major rival. Saban's Tide team, while still a work in progress, is actually exhibiting the mental toughness required to compete and win in this conference.

I don't know that it's a signature win. Maybe it is. But in my mind Saban is not the type of coach that counts "signature wins". He probably doesn't even recognize the term. The difference with Saban as opposed to many head coaches is that he actually expects to win them all. He's intense and focused enough as a head coach (and a person) that he isn't about to duck anyone or throw in the towel against anyone until the last play has been run. Whatever we call it, the win today was a huge win for Saban and the team. But they're all big wins aren't they? They're all big games at this point. My memory may fail me on this, but I believe it was a former Alabama coach that once said, "If you don't think it's a big game then you just try losing one and see how big it is then".

They're all big games and maybe this is the biggest of the year. Maybe just as important as the win itself however is the transformation in attitude that is occurring with this group of Tide players. The most obvious transformation is with that of the defensive unit. This year's Tide defense has not ranked well in any category all season long. They have had constant problems stopping the opposition and quite honestly, they're just not that talented right now. All this is due to depth, and it is a valid point. You know what though. Try telling these kids that. The BAMA defense came in today and did exactly what it had to do to give the team a chance at winning. They were not the defense of of the '92 National Championship team, but they didn't have to be. They only had to hang in there long enough for the offense to make some plays and keep them in the ball game. And that's what they did. So while the overall numbers are not impressive and you won't find any defender on this week's SEC Defensive Player of The Week listing, what you will find is a group of kids who, while maybe not that talented, are improving game by game and buying into a system.

As Nick Saban has said time and again, "It's a process". Today's performance was just another example of this team taking another huge step in the process. By knowing the process, understanding what is required during the process, and working towards completing the process, this team will eventually reach their ultimate goal.
I'm sure he'll get the signature win question from some reporter. I just hope he responds with "it's a signature process."

Solid write-up to go with a solid win.
WOW! The offense was hitting on all cylinders today. The defense still has issues, but they made plays when we needed them to.

Great read Chop. For someone who's so far away, you get alot of info.
ericd said:
WOW! The offense was hitting on all cylinders today. The defense still has issues, but they made plays when we needed them to.

Great read Chop. For someone who's so far away, you get alot of info.

ericd, I know a barner out here. He keeps me filled in.

Greg, yeah we were the WAC attack today! :lol: We score 50 and win by 1.

We started the game clicking on all cylenders today like BAMA. Two quick touchdowns in the first half. Then it got way too interesting from there. Our defense just got torched.

We scored (my son scored on the reception) from midfield with about 40 seconds left and we held the opposing offense to end the game.

It was a heck of a game man and the people were going nuts! It was a ton of fun man and I can't wait till next Saturday.

I was at a big atv jamboree this weekend with my I HATE ORANGE (has Auburn & UT with slashes through them) t-shirt I got from Bama Fever in Montgomery last month. I also wore my Crimson Tide doo-rag under my helmet. I got many "thumbs up" from some riders, some nasty smirks and comments from others. I let them know the Tide is back in town........
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