Monthly Archives: October 2010

And the new BCS standings say …

Alabama is up to No. 6 after Roadblock Saturday just another Saturday of college football upsets. Utah leapfrogged the Crimson Tide with the Utes going from No. 8 to sixth.

The Tide can thank Michigan State and Missouri for the bump while sitting on the couch celebrating a bye week (and Nick Saban’s Halloween birthday).

Auburn slipped to No. 2 after beating Ole Miss while top-ranked Oregon moved up to No. 1 after beating USC. Get ready for plenty of “control your own destiny” talk from the ESPNers.

See all of the top 25 polls/standings by clicking here.

Bama back up to No. 5

In the first round of polls released Sunday, Alabama idled its way up to a No. 5 ranking after previously undefeated Missouri and Michigan State took healthy beatings this weekend.

The only ranking that matters is still to come this evening when the BCS standings are released.

To see the full polls, just click here.

Bye week getaway: WKU homecoming edition

 

Coming to Bryant-Denny Stadium in 2012 ...

Unless something unforeseen pops up, this will be my last blog post for a few days.

It’s the bye week so this sports writer is saying goodbye to the state of Alabama for the weekend and heading back to Bowling Green, Ky., for a little homecoming action at Western Kentucky University — home of a one-game football winning streak for the first time since 2008.

Have a nice bye weekend, but expect the intensity to ratchet up by Monday with LSU on the Crimson Tide schedule next Saturday.

Until then, take it easy.

 

Time to grade the Tide

Now that the season is down to a four-game sprint to the end, it seems like a decent time to evaluate the first eight Saturdays of the fall.

So using your best, non-biased evaluating skills, give it a shot. Then check back later to see my grade.

Another practice video for your bye week

Here it is, your final practice video for the bye week. Enjoy.

Rehashing, evaluating 10 keys to season

Before the season, I put together a genius list of the 10 keys to Alabama’s football season. Now that we’re at the bye week eight games into the season, let’s see where they stand.

1. Forget the past. It’s hard to evaluate this one since it is more abstract and less tangible.
2. Waste no time. The Tide did a good job of starting fast by navigating the first portion of the schedule without a loss until going to South Carolina.
3. Keep Julio healthy. Alabama was half successful on this one, but it didn’t seem to matter much when Jones broke his hand and then hauled in a school-record 221 receiving yards two weeks later.
4. Stay out of trouble. No issues there. Nobody’s been arrested or suspended so far.
5. A wildcard must emerge. There hasn’t been one as prominent as Mark Ingram was last year, but safeties Robert Lester and Will Lowery came out of obscurity to make an impact in the secondary. C.J. Mosley has also played a big part in the defense as a freshman linebacker.
6. Kick it long, straight. They’ve kicked it longer and straighter than I may have expected in August. The young kickers/punter have done a fairly good job of not playing the Tide out of any wins while maturing along the way.
7. Beware of the traps. Not so good on this one. In the preseason preview, I warned of the danger lurking in Columbia. Turns out, I was right.
8. Embrace the media. Hmm….
9. Fast-tracked maturation. Another hard one to evaluate, but it hasn’t been a disaster.
10. Be innovative.The offense hasn’t always stepped out of the box, but it did an excellent job using the “Wildcat” to set up the pass from Marquis Maze to Michael Williams in the Florida win.

Stay tuned to see how the Tide will navigate the final four games of the regular season and how it relates to this master list.

VIDEO: A look into bye week practice

Here is a quick peek into Tuesday afternoon’s practice — the first for the Alabama football team since beating Tennessee on Saturday.

Notice right tackle D.J. Fluker moving much better than he did last week with the injured groin.

And in case you’ve never driven from Decatur to Tuscaloosa (or even if you have) check out this little time lapse video I made by propping my phone on my dashboard.

Derek Dooley and the Germans

In case you missed Tennessee coach Derek Dooley’s confusing comparison between the Tennessee football team and the WWII German army, enjoy this video.

Julio (not) SEC player of the week

The offensive honor went to Auburn QB Cam Newton instead who ran for 217 yards against LSU. Julio Jones was the runner up for the SEC offensive player of the week for piling up a school-record 221 receiving yards against Tennessee on Saturday.

Alabama left tackle James Carpenter picked up SEC offensive lineman of the week after receiving the top grading on the O-line.

Other than that, there’s not a whole lot going on this Monday of the bye week. There is no Monday news conference so that update will not be coming later in the day.

If news breaks, though, you know where to find it.

And the new BCS standings have the Tide …

… at No. 7.

Alabama was seventh last week, but top-ranked Oklahoma’s loss at Missouri allowed for the one-spot jump. The Sooners fell to No. 9.

And don’t kill the messenger, but Auburn is No. 1 in the standings for the very first time. Oregon is second, Boise State third and TCU fourth.

See the complete BCS standings by clicking here.

Updated polls, rankings and photos

It’s Sunday evening, so it’s time to digest the latest versions of our favorite polls. To find the most recent versions, see our Top 25 page.

Check back later this evening for the BCS standings when they’re released.

Now check out a few updated photo galleries after Saturday’s 41-10 Alabama win over Tennessee.

Panoramic photos updated Oct. 24
Alabama football 2010

A video look back at Tennessee game day

It’s time for the weekly retrospective of the Saturday game day scene. So, here you go, the Alabama/Tennessee afternoon as seen through my point-and-shoot camera.

Tide smokes Vols, cigars

Here is the lead from my game story I wrote after Alabama’s 41-10 win on Rocky Top. After reading and digesting, vote on the poll below.

KNOXVILLE ― A foreign smell filled the hallway outside the Alabama locker room Saturday night

When the door swung open, the smoke burned from the end of a few cigars as the Crimson Tide walked to the bus through a mob of cheering fans and flashing cameras.

Who said this rivalry lost its flare this fall?

Before lighting up the stogies, Alabama smoked Tennessee with a huge second half to win its fourth straight over the Vols, 41-10 in front of a once-packed Neyland Stadium.

Now vote.

Bama climbs Rocky Top, 41-10

Not much time to write now, but Alabama just piled up 200 third-quarter yards and 21 points to turn a close one into a blowout.

Alabama 41, Tennessee 10.

Julio Jones broke a school record with 221 receiving yards on 12 catches with that pesky broken left hand.

Welcome to Neyland Stadium

Click to enlarge.

All is quiet for now in Neyland Stadium, but the atmosphere outside is pretty solid. For a first timer in Knoxville, I have to say I’m impressed with the size of the structure, but not crazy about the aesthetics.

All eyes in the press box are trained on the Auburn/LSU game that Cam Newton leads 10-3. Come on back for updates as warranted.

Update: We’re about 90 minutes away from kickoff now and Auburn is tied with LSU 10-10 at halftime. Former Heisman winner Eddie George was just grabbing some food in the nice new press box here in Neyland Stadium. The ex-Ohio State/Tennessee Titan is doing radio work today for Westwood One.

Update: My alma mater, Western Kentucky, leads UL-Lafayette 10-0 after one quarter as the nation’s longest losing streak could be in trouble. In Alabama news, the “Million Dollar Band” just took their seats as the trainers/managers play catch on the field.

Update: Contrary to any crazy internet rumor, Greg McElroy does not appear to be injured in any way. Both hands look like they are working and there are no indications that AJ McCarron will get the start instead.