| FTBL Odds and ends I've come across...


...and while I didn't hear this a little of this first hand, it fits with things I've heard from other people and from some I know around the program.

  • The leadership you want on the football team is emerging. Much like when Gilberry told Rolo last year "this is your team now" Rolo is taking that role seriously.

    Small story as an example and I'll get back to football. I play golf a lot, you guys know this and there is a group of about 12-15 that get together once a week and play. Several of these guys attend the same church and they have a yearly men's retreat at a camp called Hickory Knob in South Carolina. I've attended a few of them, great golf, great fishing, great hiking, etc...but, at each of these retreats you hear the leaders of this church talk about accountability. Finding someone you can trust, be accountable to, and discuss issues you have with them in a mentor/counseling role.

    That is developing within the team as well. You've got guys calling each other these past few days (players have been on a small break) literally checking up on each other. Younger guys calling seniors. Rolo is just one of those guys. Antoine is also filling a void that we had last year of a vocal leader. Rashad, another one.

    I bring that up because I want you to think about how close knit some of the kids coming in have become with each other. Once this kind of leadership is fostered among the older players, it'll grow with the younger ones and continue.
  • The competitive attitude with the younger guys isn't something they hide when they are in drills, S&C work, etc. It's noticeable, even to the the veterans. However, as confident as these younger players are it isn't something that has brought a rift between the two groups. If anything, it's like a virus...spreading through the entire group.
  • This will bring the JPW talkers out. :LOL: Saban has publicly gone on record stating that under Coach Mac JP is "getting it." Yes, that is a direct quote. He's working hard on all aspects of his game but one thing that caught my eye is they are wanting him to report in the fall at 225 lbs.
  • Jermaine played last year at around the 210 mark, had gained a little up until spring camp, but if he reports in at 225 we are looking at him putting on a good 15 lbs of muscle over the summer. Funny quote from a guy that spoke with JPW. He asked him how fast he was running the 40 and JP said 4.5. Jokingly, he asked what had happened because he was listed running faster than that in HS. JP's remark, "we are keeping things real @ Bama.)

    His time made me raise my eyebrows a bit. But, a comment following that caused me to laugh a bit. He was talking about Grant and said when they were running springs Terry ran by him like he was standing still.

    Coach Mac loves to get guys in open space. With that breakaway speed I suspect we are going to see some exciting plays this fall.
  • Back during the coaches clinic you recall we had conversations about how Fernado Bryant had comment about how the coaches were welcoming former players back to the University and how good he felt about being welcomed home again. That trend continues as some of the NFL guys from Bama have been working out in Tuscaloosa along with our team. Meco and Mark to name a couple...
  • In another thread, this conversation has come up, but I'll touch on it again. Star, BJ and Julio are still in that "learning curve" stage when it comes to the offense. They are coming along but it's given players like Alonzo Lawrence and Robby Green a chance to show how good they are in coverage.
  • While Woodall was with the 1's coming out of spring and continuing to work there Mark Barron is already nipping at his heels. Barron is the guy I've thought all along may be the best recruit we have in the '08 class. He's going to see significant playing time in the fall and you'll have to color me shocked if he doesn't take over the starting job alongside Rashad Johnson by the 4th-5th game of the season.
  • I think I've mentioned this before so if I'm repeating myself I apologize. The staff is doing something I find unique in that they are having "game weeks" with the drills, both skel and conditioning. They recently finished the Georgia week and comments from more than one player say it was the toughest week they have had in the summer since they have been there. I don't know if other programs do similar things, but it is the first time I've heard of such a program at Alabama. I found that to be a neat way to address things for the upcoming season even though we are already in the summer.
  • I know I've said this, but building on what I just mentioned, that means that they are getting close to working on the Clemson game. The staff, prepares for the season backwards. By that, I mean they started off with Auburn week, then move to MSU, LSU and will finish up with Clemson. The approach is done this way so the last drills they'll be working on will be focused on the Tigers before beginning fall camp on the 30th of next month. It's all about keeping them mentally fresh when they start their game plan.
  • I know this is nothing new to you guys, but it's still being repeated time and time again. Maze, the kid has a lot of speed. Hanks, speed with some GREAT hands. McCoy, coming along very well.
  • I found it funny when Chris Jordan said that he expected the workouts in the summer to be difficult, but had no idea it would be to this degree. We talked about this last year, but you can believe it even more about this season. Physically, and mentally, these guys will be able to finish in '08 when it comes to the 4th quarter.
  • Jerrell Harris and Courtney Upshaw have been working as inside 'backers this summer and they have slid Hightower to the outside. I don't know if they are saying Donta' is playing the SLB or the JACK but those that see his size and wonder about his speed needn't do so...that kid is fast!
  • You probably remember how Saban was joking around with Kareem Jackson during the Under the Lights special pretending he was going to tackle Kareem while saying, "You don't want any of this #3." That's a side of him most don't see, but another side most haven't seen is how hard he rides Kareem in practice. Saban really like his potential and thinks by the time he hits his Jr. and Sr. season he'll be one of the best cover corners in the nation.

    Here's a link to the 30 minutes show if you haven't seen it yet. Great stuff
  • Back to the attitude part. The defensive line has taken the stance "we'll show them" because most pundits look at the line and talk about the youth. I firmly believe we'll be quite pleased with our DL this season. In fact, it is the one group I look most forward to seeing in action.
  • Good reports coming on the offensive line's improvement as well. They looked better in the spring, and the conditioning of the group continues to take hold as evidenced by Andre who has dropped 10-12 lbs since the spring camp. We are beginning to establish some depth on the OL as well.
  • Another item you may have heard, and if so, I apologize for the second time, the team also has some voluntary workouts they attend outside of the S&C program. They've focused on things like karate and pilates which leads to more flexibility, better balance and team unity.
  • I know I've mentioned this before, but it bears repeating when considering the summer conditioning drills. They are running 26 110 yard sprints. Each group has a designated time they have to finish those sprints. If one player doesn't, the entire team runs another one. Just as an example, Chris Jordan said the other day that they had to run 31 that day. They do get a 45 second rest period between each spring but when you put the numbers together do you realize that is spring over a mile?
  • Small note on Jordan, he's been working with the linebackers this summer.
  • Star Jackson is going to have to put on some weight. But, on the brighter side of things he has a very strong arm. In the sprints I mentioned earlier he's been hanging with the WR's in terms of how he finishes.
  • I know I've seen some reports about BJ Scott lining up at different positions. This summer, he has almost exclusively been in the slot position.
  • On the recruiting front you probably has seen a few articles and comments about kids open to out of state schools, etc. That's partially true in that they are open to visiting those schools and listening to what their staff has to say. However, out of the top 15 in state you can expect 11-12 of them will be signing with Alabama in Feb. of '09

Just some idle thoughts about the team this morning...figured I'd pass them along since news is slow this time of the year.
Thanks Terry. Man I'm glad to hear about the leadership emerging. One thing I hadn't thought about was the hype about the freshmen and that possibly causing a rift with the older players. I just never gave that a thought. Glad to hear it isn't happening. It says a lot,to me anyway, that the veterans are maybe feeding off the freshmen's hunger,excitement and desire to fulfill the hype.
Only good can come out of that, starting with team unity and bonding.
I agree about the O'line and D'line. It is the key to the success of the team. We've got enough play makers in the skill positions to be competitive. It's going to be up to the lines to do the dominating.
Again thanks for the updates.
One other thing I've read and heard but now I'm drawing a blank on what the players name was...

In the Fran era, a lineman, a lot talked about him being able to dunk the ball at one of Fran's "Night of Champions" events. The conversations about this player all referred to the size of his calves beings as big as a lot of the players thighs were.

Anyway, the comparison was being made to Mark Ingram and the size of the muscles in his calves. That easily translates in to the ability to stay low and have a good drive moving the pile.
Terry, I didn't think I could have been more amped up for the upcoming season, but you did it. Dang August will never get here. :lol:
TerryP said:
One other thing I've read and heard but now I'm drawing a blank on what the players name was...

In the Fran era, a lineman, a lot talked about him being able to dunk the ball at one of Fran's "Night of Champions" events. The conversations about this player all referred to the size of his calves beings as big as a lot of the players thighs were.

Anyway, the comparison was being made to Mark Ingram and the size of the muscles in his calves. That easily translates in to the ability to stay low and have a good drive moving the pile.

I have always and still feel that Ingram is going to be as big as anybody in this recruiting class. Maybe even this year because of the fact that nobody emerged as the feature back last season so the position is still up in the air. Therefore the staff must focus on all of them instead of just 1 or2.
Amazing post Terry. I don't wanna imagine such a big guy as Hightower playing at full speed into the LB corp. He's gonna be a terror for rivals offenses, but we need him so badly in the interior.

dctide said:
Terry ,
The lineman you mentioned that you couldn't remember his name ? Was it Anthony Bryant ? I remember hearing stories on the size of his calves....

I think you are right dc, I do remember teammates calling him bear so it makes sense it would be him.
Thanks a ton Terry. It's gotten to where the only threads I read are the ones you've posted in. Thanks again for being a reliable source.
I'm glad to hear all the good reports about leadership and conditioning. I think we all know though that the proof will be shown on the field.

Last season I think we saw us improve in conditioning, being able to actually play a full four quarters. However, one area we didn't as much close the gap on was strength and power of our OL & DL. From an OL perspective we still were getting stoned at the line against the better teams such as Georgia, LSU, Fla. St etc and our DL didn't have the size nor strength to generate much pass rush.

So this season I'm looking for how much we've closed the gap on the better teams in regards to strength and power in our OL and DL. Because we all know if your lines are par to subpar you ain't going very far in this league.
Bama1966 said:
So bamaupsman is in Jail. :lol: :lol: :lol:
Yeah, it was cheaper than supporting myself. 3 squares a day, free internet! What more could I want?
No, not really in jail. Just seemed like the thing to say.
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