Monday, January 31, 2011

Croom and Groh Candidates for Coaching Position

St. Louis Rams running backs coach Sylvester Croom has interviewed for a position on the Alabama coaching staff.

Croom is considered to be a candidate to replace former wide receivers coach Curt Cignetti who left Alabama to take the head coaching position at Indiana University of Pennsylvania.

Croom has never been a wide receivers coach and it is uncertain if Nick Saban will give Croom the wide receivers coach “tag” if hired.

As Saban has done in the past (on select occasions), Croom could be given the title of “assistant” while a current assistant coach is moved into the role of receivers coach.

Louisville quarterbacks coach Mike Groh is also in contention for the coaching vacancy at Alabama.

Groh was at Alabama in 2009 as a graduate assistant and worked with the receivers.

Groh is most recognized for being an assistant coach at Virginia for eight years, three of which were served as offensive coordinator.

Groh’s father, current Georgia Tech defensive coordinator Al Groh, is most noted in the college ranks for his many years (2001-09) as the head coach of the Virginia Cavaliers.

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McElroy Injured, Jones in All-Star Football Challenge

Former Alabama quarterback Greg McElroy suffered a cracked bone in his right hand during Saturday’s Under Armour Senior Bowl.

McElroy sustained the injury on the first play of the fourth quarter when he hit his right hand on a helmet (follow-through) after completing a pass to South Alabama’s Courtney Smith.

X-rays confirmed that McElroy suffered a cracked bone near his thumb. The injury will prevent the former Tide quarterback from throwing the football for a period of two weeks.

McElroy, along with former Tide offensive lineman James Carpenter, have been invited to the NFL combine which will be held February 23-March 1 in Indianapolis.



Former Alabama wide receiver Julio Jones will be one of 12 college football stars who will take part in the 2011 All-Star Football Challenge.

The skills challenge will air on Feb. 4 from 6-8 p.m. and will be broadcast on ESPN.

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Friday, January 28, 2011

Vollmar Accepts Position at Michigan

Mike Vollmar, the University of Alabama’s associate athletics director for football, has accepted a position in the athletics department at the University of Michigan.

Vollmar is expected to assume a position similar to the one he held at Alabama.

Prior to his arrival at Alabama in 2008, Mike Vollmar and Nick Saban had previously worked together at Michigan State University.

While Saban was the head coach (1995-99) of the Spartans, Vollmar served as the assistant athletics director, a position he held at MSU for 12 years.

In respect to the University of Michigan, Vollmar served as the assistant recruiting coordinator for the Wolverines from 1988-90.

Vollmar’s father, James, was a running back for the maize and blue in the 1950s.

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Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Crimson Notes 1/26/10

The University of Alabama has announced the annual A-Day Spring Game will be held on April 16 at Bryant-Denny Stadium.

Kickoff for the annual public scrimmage has been tentatively set for 2 p.m. and admission will be free to the general public.

Television coverage and other events concerning A-Day 2011 will be released at a later date.

Alabama leads the nation in spring game attendance with a joint total of 345,700 since 2007.

In other news, the 2011 homecoming game has been set for October 8, when the Crimson Tide will play host to the Vanderbilt Commodores.

Homecoming activities and kickoff time for the game will be released as soon as an official "homecoming schedule" has been finalized.

The 2011 Under Armour Senior Bowl is this Saturday at Ladd-Peebles Stadium in Mobile, AL.

Former Alabama Crimson Tide stars James Carpenter, Preston Dial and Greg McElroy will be given the opportunity to showcase their skills in front of NFL coaches and scouts.

The Under Armour Senior Bowl will kickoff at 3:00 p.m. CST and will be nationally televised on the NFL Network.


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Friday, January 21, 2011

Dee Hart Enrolls at Alabama

One of the top all-purpose backs in the nation has officially enrolled at the University of Alabama.

Dee Hart, a five-star prospect from Orlando, FL, has enrolled for the spring semester and will participate in spring practice.

Hart, who was named the 2011 U.S. Army National Player of the Year as well as MVP of the U.S. Army All-American Bowl, changed his verbal commitment from Michigan to Alabama after the Wolverines decided not to retain Rich Rodriguez.

The 5-foot-8, 190-pound Hart, is considered one of the “crown jewels” of the 2011 Alabama signing class.

Hart finished his senior season at Dr. Phillips High School (Orlando) with 252 carries, 2,218 yards and 40 touchdowns.

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Indiana University of Pennsylvania Hires Cignetti

Curt Cignetti has been officially announced as the new head football coach at Indiana University of Pennsylvania.

Cignetti, the former wide receivers coach at Alabama, becomes the 11th head coach in IUP football history.

"I was ready to be the head coach," Cignetti said. "I was ready to wake up in the morning, set the agenda and work the plan. I really felt a special fit and bond with IUP. I knew they had been there before and could get there again."

Cignetti’s father, Frank, is the winningest coach in the history of IUP with a total of 182 victories from 1986-2005.

Prior to his arrival at IUP, Cignetti had been the wide receivers coach at Alabama for four seasons and also held the title of recruiting coordinator during his time with the Crimson Tide.

The desire to spend more time with his family was one of the reasons cited by Cignetti for taking the job at IUP.

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Tuesday, January 18, 2011

B.J. Scott Enrolls at South Alabama

Former Alabama defensive back B.J. Scott has enrolled at the University of South Alabama.

Scott, who was regarded as a five-star prospect out of Vigor High School, was a prominent member of the 2008 signing class at Alabama.

In 2008, Scott saw limited action at the wide receiver position, was redshirted in 2009 and reemerged in 2010 as a defensive back.

Due to lack of playing time and a season-ending ankle injury (November) which required surgery, Scott began to express his desire to transfer closer to home.

Now officially enrolled at South Alabama, Scott will be eligible to play for the Jaguars this season and is expected to remain at the defensive back position under head coach Joey Jones.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Barron to Return for Senior Season, Stoutland Hired

Alabama safety Mark Barron has officially announced he will return for his senior season.

"There were a lot of pros and cons in this situation," Barron said. “The pros of coming back were getting closer to my degree and the possibility of winning another national championship. Hopefully, I'll be able to improve my draft stock and hopefully be a top ten or top 15 pick next year.”

"In terms of declaring for the draft, playing in the NFL and giving back to my family has always been a dream of mine, but after weighing the pros and cons, it is my decision to come back and play for the Alabama Crimson Tide."

Barron was the leading tackler for Alabama during the 2010 season with 54 solo stops.

The 'Bama safety currently has a total of 10 interceptions in his Crimson Tide career which ranks him among the top 10 in Alabama football history.


Alabama coach Nick Saban officially announced (Friday) the hiring of Jeff Stoutland as offensive line coach.

Stoutland, as reported earlier this week, will replace Joe Pendry, who has retired from coaching after an illustrious career which included four seasons with the Crimson Tide.

“We are certainly happy to add a coach the caliber of Jeff Stoutland to our staff at the University of Alabama,” said coach Nick Saban.

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Friday, January 14, 2011

Significant Recruiting Weekend for the Crimson Tide

In what could arguably be considered the most important recruiting period of Nick Saban’s Alabama career, some of the nation’s most coveted high school prospects will arrive on campus this weekend.

The top high school player in the country, defensive end Jadeveon Clowney, will arrive today for his official campus visit.

The Rock Hill, SC prospect has offers from practically every school in the nation, but many recruiting “experts” believe Clowney’s final decision will come down to South Carolina and Alabama.

Clowney will make his decision official on National Signing Day which is
Feb. 2.

One of the top running backs in the nation, Isaiah Crowell, will also visit Alabama this weekend.

The Georgia native has narrowed his final list to Alabama, Auburn and Georgia.

Other Visitors:
Jay Rome (Tight End)
Malcolm Mitchell (Athlete)
Nickolas Brassell (Wide Receiver)
Phillip Dukes (Defensive Tackle)
Brandon Shell (Offensive Tackle)
Bradley Sylve (Wide Receiver, Alabama Verbal Commitment)
Marvin Shinn (Wide Receiver, Alabama Verbal Commitment)
Jabriel Washington (Athlete, Alabama Verbal Commitment)
Ryan Kelly (Offensive Lineman, Alabama Verbal Commitment)

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Thursday, January 13, 2011

‘Bama Welcomes Eight Spring Enrollees

The University of Alabama football program has welcomed a total of eight spring enrollees who will be on the 2011 roster.

The group features three of the highest rated junior college players in the country, three early high school graduates and two players who originally signed with the Crimson Tide in 2010.

Junior College Transfers: Jesse Williams, Aaron Douglas and Quinton Dial

Early High School Graduates: Phillip Ely, Trey DePriest and Vinnie Sunseri

2010 Alabama Signees: Ronald Carswell and Wilson Love

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Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Offensive Line Coach Joe Pendry Retires

University of Alabama offensive line coach Joe Pendry has retired.

Pendry, 63, has been at Alabama since Nick Saban took over the Crimson Tide football program in 2007.

In regards to who will replace Pendry, the online media outlet has reported that Miami Hurricanes offensive line coach/interim head coach Jeff Stoutland has been hired by the Crimson Tide to fill the position.

The University of Alabama (at this time) has yet to confirm or deny the reports concerning Stoutland.

UPDATE: The Miami Herald has reported that University of Miami offensive line coach Jeff Stoutland has resigned and will join the coaching staff at the University of Alabama.

Stoutland is expected to fill the coaching vacancy (offensive line) left by Joe Pendry. University of Alabama officials have suggested that Pendry may remain at Alabama and assume a non-coaching role.

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ESPN Is Still The Best Sports Network

Contribution by Saul Martin

Television has changed a lot over the years. ESPN used to be your only option for major sports coverage. Now there are tons of channels including several other versions of ESPN. For me, the original ESPN remains the best sports network around. I watch ESPN on cable tv all the time. I watch SportsCenter to see what happened games earlier that day. I watch various shows like Around the Horn and Pardon the Interruption. I flip to ESPN throughout the day to get live updates from the ticker that scrolls from the bottom of the screen. Of course, I also watch sports on ESPN.

ESPN has live games from a variety of sports including the NFL, NBA, Major League Baseball, and the NCAA. I watch games whenever I get the chance. ESPN offers great coverage with smart announcers and great statistical analysis. My favorite analysis comes from College GameDay. This show airs Saturday mornings during the college football season. It features Chris Fowler, Kirk Herbstreit, and Lee Corso talking about the action for that day in the college football world. The show is set up from a different campus every week and the experts offer insightful information. It is my favorite pregame show by far. ESPN has other great pregame shows that get you ready for any game you might watch. For sports coverage there is no channel better than ESPN.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Mosley Named Freshman All-American, '10 Rankings

Alabama linebacker C.J. Mosley has been named a freshman All-American by the Football Writers Association of America.

The Theodore High School product finished third in tackles for the Crimson Tide with 67. Mosley also had two interceptions and 10 quarterback hurries during the 2010 campaign.

In the final rankings of the 2010 season, the Alabama Crimson Tide finished No. 10 in the Associated Press Top 25 and No. 11 in the USA TODAY/ESPN Coaches’ Poll.

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Saturday, January 8, 2011

Hart Confirms Commitment…Calloway Decommits

Dr. Phillips High School (Orlando) running back Dee Hart has confirmed his commitment to the Alabama Crimson Tide.

Hart publicly confirmed his decision at the U.S. Army All-American game where he was awarded MVP honors as well as being named the U.S. Army National Player of the Year.

While the Dee Hart confirmation was good news for the Crimson Tide, Alabama also received a dose of bad news at the U.S. Army All-American game.

The No. 1 prospect in the state of Alabama, linebacker Brent Calloway, has officially decommitted from the Crimson Tide and given his verbal to the Auburn Tigers.

Calloway had been an Alabama verbal commitment for over a year, but Auburn made a late push with the promise Calloway could play at the running back position.

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Friday, January 7, 2011

Dareus, Ingram and Jones Declare for NFL Draft

Three of the most talented players (arguably) in Alabama Crimson Tide football history…are going pro.

Joined by coach Nick Saban at a news conference held Friday, Marcell Dareus, Mark Ingram and Julio Jones each took the podium and publicly declared for the NFL Draft.

"I'm fully endorsing each of these guys in terms of the decisions they've made," Alabama coach Nick Saban said.

While three Tide players declared for the NFL, linebacker Dont’a Hightower publicly announced his decision to return to Alabama for his final season.

Nick Saban didn’t “close the book” in respect to other underclassmen declaring for the NFL.

The most notable Crimson Tide players who’ve yet to make a final decision include Mark Barron and Marquis Maze.


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Thursday, January 6, 2011

Crimson Notes 1/6/11

Alabama defensive coordinator Kirby Smart has been given a salary increase and a three year contract extension with the Crimson Tide. Smart, who earned $750,000 during the 2010 season, will now make $850,000 per year.

In similar news, ‘Bama strength and conditioning coach Scott Cochran has received a raise which will increase his salary to $290,000 for 2011 and 2012. Cochran's salary will increase to $310,000 in the year 2013.


Four-star defensive end Xzavier Dickson gave his verbal commitment to the Alabama Crimson Tide during the 2011 Under Armour All-America game.

Visit the 2011 Recruiting Class for more information on the latest Tide commitment.


Former Alabama quarterback Greg McElroy has earned the Today’s Top VIII Award for his athletic, academic and community service work.

Recipients of the award will be honored later this month at the NCAA Honors and Delegates Celebration in San Antonio, Texas at the 2011 NCAA Convention.

McElroy is the ninth athlete from the University of Alabama to earn the prestigious Today’s Top VIII Award.

"This is certainly a great honor, and I'm very proud to be able to represent the University in this manner," McElroy said. "I'm appreciative to the NCAA for the opportunity to play football and be a student-athlete over the last five years. The NCAA Top VIII award means so much to me because it not only represents what I was able to accomplish on the field, but what I accomplished in the classroom and the community as well. I want to thank my coaches, teammates and everyone at The University of Alabama who helped me achieve my goals."

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

‘Bama Recruiting News: Elite Talent on Display

The Under Armour All-America game is tonight and the University of Alabama will have a total of four 2011 commitments participating in the game.

The postseason all-star affair will commence at 6 p.m. in St. Petersburg, FL at Tropicana Field and will be nationally televised by ESPN.

Alabama supporters will get the opportunity to see Hasean Clinton-Dix, Trey DePriest, Vinnie Sunseri and Bradley Sylve compete on a national stage.

During the course of the game, the Crimson Tide could very well receive another commitment in the person of Xzavier Dickson. The highly touted defensive end will make his decision at the game and Alabama is high on Dickson’s list.

In addition to the four players who will see action in the game, three Tide commitments were invited but will be unable to play due to injury. Offensive lineman Ryan Kelly, tight end Malcolm Faciane and wide receiver Marvin Shinn will be sidelined.

Outside of the current 'Bama commitments, several Tide prospects will be participating in the Under Armour All-America game. Cyrus Kouandjio (brother Arie signed with ‘Bama in ’10), Jadeveon Clowney and Isaiah Crowell are all highly touted players who have expressed strong interest in Alabama.

The Under Armour All-America game will feature some of the best high school talent in the nation, but Saturday promises to showcase a collection of equally talented players.

The University of Alabama has a total of four commitments who will participate in the U.S. Army All-American game. Brent Calloway, Danny Woodson, Dee Hart and Phillip Ely will take the national stage at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas. The game will begin at noon and will be seen live on NBC.

In respect to official campus visits, Marvin Shinn, Isaiah Crowell and Jadeveon Clowney are scheduled for Jan. 14, while Brent Calloway and Tim Jernigan (‘Bama prospect) will visit on Jan. 21.

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Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Coaching Carousel: Davis to UT...Rumph to ‘Bama

Alabama defensive line coach Bo Davis has accepted a defensive coaching position with the University of Texas.

Texas media outlets reported on Monday that Davis was in Austin for an interview to fill the vacancy left by former (retired) defensive tackles coach Mike Tolleson.

Media reports out of South Carolina and Alabama (Tuesday) confirmed that Clemson defensive ends coach Chris Rumph will replace the departed Davis as the new defensive line coach for the Crimson Tide.

Rumph had been at Clemson for five seasons.

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Monday, January 3, 2011

Dee Hart Commits to Alabama

After giving his verbal commitment to the University of Michigan during the fall, four-star running back Dee Hart (Dr. Phillips High School in Orlando) has confirmed to Fox Sports and that he will play his college career…at the University of Alabama.

Hart now joins high school teammate Hasean Clinton-Dix (safety) as part of the Alabama recruiting class of 2011.

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Sunday, January 2, 2011

High Tide: ‘Bama Crushes Michigan State

Alabama finally put together a 60-minute game on Saturday afternoon and the Michigan State Spartans were simply in the wrong place…at the wrong time.

The Crimson Tide picked the final game of the season to fire on all cylinders and the result was a 49-7 thrashing of the Michigan State Spartans in the Capital One Bowl to finish the season with a record of 10-3.

Alabama dominated the Spartans (especially both lines of scrimmage) and turned the game into nothing more than a Crimson Tide showcase of excellence.

The Alabama defense held the Spartans to a negative rushing total (-48) and reduced Michigan State to only 171 yards of total offense.

‘Bama linebacker Courtney Upshaw was awarded MVP honors for his defensive efforts against MSU. Upshaw recorded two sacks, five individual tackles and one forced fumble.

On the offensive side of the ball, Alabama came to play!

‘Bama amassed 546 yards of total offense (275 rushing, 271 passing) and earned a place in the record books in the process.

The 49-7 triumph is the second-largest victory in Alabama bowl history. The largest margin came against Syracuse in the 1953 Orange Bowl where the Crimson Tide recorded a resounding 61-6 victory.

Five different Tide players scored touchdowns against the Spartans and due to the offensive productivity, several records were broken.

Tide running back Mark Ingram scored two rushing touchdowns and in the process set the school record for most rushing touchdowns in a career with 42. Ingram broke the old record of 41 held by former Alabama great Shaun Alexander who played from 1996-99.

Alabama scored a total of seven touchdowns in the game, six of which were on the ground. The six rushing touchdowns against the Spartans set an Alabama bowl record breaking the old mark of four (BCS title game one year ago and the 1953 Orange Bowl).

‘Bama senior quarterback Greg McElroy threw for 220 yards against MSU which allowed him to set the school record for most passing yards in a single season with 2,987. The old mark of 2,846 was set in 2007 by former Tide quarterback John Parker Wilson.

Alabama scored 28 points in the first-half against the Spartans which tied a ‘Bama bowl record matching the total set by the Tide during the 1983 Sun Bowl.

As champions of the 2011 Capital One Bowl, Alabama earned a third consecutive
10-plus win season.

NOTE: I'm currently without a picture provider for this site. After 16 months of service, (the time I've been online), the site I use has decided to pull the plug (Jan. 1) on the feature I use for my pictures. Needless to say...I'm VERY upset! I hope to find a new picture outlet in the near future.