Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Crimson Notes 2/27/13

With the start of spring football practice in a little over two weeks, several news items have come across the wire in regards to player disciplinary actions, a potential transfer, and injury concerns.

-The four players arrested earlier this month have been dismissed from the football program and are no longer enrolled at the University of Alabama. In respect to the original documentation of the story, a "site policy" was issued in the latter portions of THIS article. While this event was certainly not unforeseen, contrary to the original policy, the news does offer finality in respect to the football aspect of this issue.

-*Redshirt sophomore wide receiver Danny Woodson, Jr. has been suspended from the program for violation of team rules. Due to the suspension, Woodson, Jr. is not participating in offseason workouts.

-*Redshirt sophomore wide receiver Marvin Shinn is not participating in the offseason workout program and all signs indicate that Shinn will transfer prior to the start of the 2013 season.

*Alabama WR Marvin Shinn likely transferring; Danny Woodson Jr. suspended for violation of team rules

-Per Nick Saban, defensive back John Fulton and wide receiver Kevin Norwood are recovering from toe injuries and will potentially miss the spring practice sessions. In respect to Fulton, the Crimson Tide senior is recovering from a surgical procedure.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Mike Groh to the NFL, Billy Napier to Alabama

Just days after Alabama replaced Jeff Stoutland with Mario Cristobal, the sought-after Crimson Tide coaching staff has once again undergone a transformation.

Alabama wide receivers coach Mike Groh, who was recently named the 2013 Recruiter of the Year by and, has accepted a coaching position with the Chicago Bears of the NFL.

To counter the move by Groh, Alabama will reportedly hire Florida State tight ends coach/recruiting coordinator Billy Napier to fill the vacancy.

Prior to his arrival at Florida State, Napier served as the assistant head coach/quarterbacks coach under Jim McElwain at Colorado State.

In respect to Alabama, Napier will actually be making his return to the Crimson Tide fold. During the 2011 calendar year, Napier served as an offensive quality control assistant on the 'Bama staff under Jim McElwain.

Napier, 32, has been in the coaching profession since 2003 where he initially served as a graduate assistant at Clemson.

Advance Auto Parts - Keep the Wheels Turning

Monday, February 18, 2013

Mario Cristobal hired as new offensive line coach

He was a rival in the 1993 Sugar Bowl, but as of today Mario Cristobal is Alabama’s newest ally…as well as offensive line coach.

Regarded by many as one of the brightest young minds in the coaching profession, Cristobal will succeed the departed Jeff Stoutland not only as offensive line coach, but as one of Alabama’s leading recruiters.

Like Stoutland, Cristobal comes to Alabama from the University of Miami. Over the course of his coaching career, Cristobal has had various stints with the UM program, including earlier this year where he accepted the position of associate head coach/tight ends coach. Cristobal, a 1993 Miami graduate, will be leaving that position to accept his new role on the Alabama staff.

As for the aforementioned various stints with the 'Canes, Cristobal also held the title of tight ends coach in 2004-2005, and the title of offensive line coach in 2006.

In addition to his experience as a position(s) coach, Cristobal’s most notable coaching tenure came as head coach of the Florida International Panthers. From 2007-2012, Cristobal resurrected a dormant program by leading them to two bowl appearances, including a victory in the 2010 Little Caesars Pizza Bowl.

In respect to his college playing career, Cristobal was an offensive lineman for the Miami Hurricanes during their most recent “glory era.” Cristobal was a member of the 1989 and 1991 national championship teams while at Miami, and as noted above, was a vital member of the 1992 Miami squad that lost to Alabama in the famed Sugar Bowl. The contest, held on January 1, 1993, was essentially a "winner-take-all" national title game, some six years prior to the BCS format.

Steele and Stevenson join the Alabama staff

In addition to today’s hire of Mario Cristobal, Alabama did make two official hires last week in the persons of Kevin Steele and Kerry Stevenson.

Steele, the former defensive coordinator at both Alabama and Clemson, has been named the Director of Player Personnel for the Crimson Tide staff and will also serve as an active recruiter for head coach Nick Saban.

In respect to Stevenson, the former Vigor High School head football coach has been named the Director of Player Development, and, like Steele, will also serve as an active recruiter.

Personal site policy in regards to the recent arrests

As has been well documented by essentially every sports media outlet in the country, four Alabama football players were arrested last week and charged with serious offenses.

Given the severity of the crimes and the negative attention surrounding the situation, this will be the one and ONLY time this story will be mentioned on The Crimson Elephant.

Those who perpetrated these acts of violence (amongst other things) are not worthy of attention, and the victims deserve our prayers and support.

What took place last week on the University of Alabama campus is not representative of the Alabama football program, and will certainly not be “glorified” in the form of “name attention” on this site.

The issues at hand, as of now, are of a legal nature and involve suspended, not active, football players. Barring an unforeseen turn of events, this story will not be discussed or documented (further) via this media outlet.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Jeff Stoutland expected to leave Alabama for NFL

Per multiple media reports this evening, Alabama offensive line coach Jeff Stoutland is expected to be named to the same position with the Philadelphia Eagles of the NFL.

Stoutland, who arrived at Alabama (from Miami) in early 2011, has played a large role in leading the Crimson Tide to back-to-back national championships. Courtesy of dominant offensive lines, developed under Stoutland’s tutelage, Alabama has reached the pinnacle of unrelenting success since his arrival.

Since 2011, Alabama's performance across the offensive front has been regarded as arguably the best in college football.

This story will be updated as more information becomes available.

UPDATE: While Jeff Stoutland has yet to ink a contract with the Philadelphia Eagles, the position has been accepted. Stoutland has informed the new Alabama signees that he will not be a member of the Crimson Tide coaching staff in 2013.

Edwin Watts Golf

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

NSD 2013: Alabama cements No. 1 signing class

The 2013 Alabama recruiting class has officially been signed, sealed, and delivered. Capturing yet another recruiting “national championship,” the Crimson Tide signed *25 players in total.

In what always results in a very busy day, here’s a quick recap of National Signing Day 2013 for the Alabama Crimson Tide.

-All verbal commitments (23) remained steadfast and signed with Alabama.

-As reported last month, four-star offensive tackle Bradley Bozeman (solid verbal) has been willingly “removed” from this signing class and has accepted a grayshirt. Bozeman is recovering from knee surgery, and by his own admission, felt he needed more time to heal and recuperate.

-In respect to the “undecided” prospects entering the day, Alabama signed four-star defensive end Dee Liner, four-star running back Alvin Kamara, and five-star defensive tackle A’Shawn Robinson.

-While Alabama did “miss” on a few recruits, as every team does, the most noteworthy “dismissals” came in the form of four-star safety Antonio Conner, and five-star defensive tackle Eddie Vanderdoes. In the end, Conner selected the Ole Miss Rebels over the Crimson Tide, while Vanderdoes signed with Notre Dame over the likes of Alabama and UCLA.

-Alabama has been crowned the 2013 recruiting "national champions" per the recruiting outlets 247Sports, ESPN, and

*Commitment No. 26? --- Ohio State commit Johnny Townsend ponders personal matter before signing

Punters do not normally dominate headlines on National Signing Day, but Boone’s Johnny Townsend is the exception.
Townsend, one of the top punters in the country, was expected to sign with Ohio State today but an unspecified "family matter" has put his signing of the National Letter of Intent on hold.
The Townsend saga is still fluid and will most likely not be resolved until Thursday.

Hat World & Lid - the #1 destination for headwear

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Alabama attempts to seal nation's top signing class

With less than 20 hours on the clock until National Signing Day, the list below is one final prognostication in respect to Alabama's final "targets" to complete the 2013 signing class.

While an academic casualty and/or grayshirt is possible, Alabama is not expected to lose a current verbal commitment (23) to the decommitment process.

The "star ratings" listed below are courtesy of

Good standing

-A’Shawn Robinson (5-star Defensive Tackle)

-Alvin Kamara (4-star All-Purpose Back)

-Dee Liner (4-star Defensive End)

On the fence (expect Alabama to take two from this list)

-Eddie Vanderdoes (5-star Defensive Tackle) – Alabama/Notre Dame/UCLA

-Montravius Adams (5-star Defensive Tackle) – UA/AU/Clemson/Georgia

-Antonio Conner (4-star Safety) – Alabama/Ole Miss

-Jarran Reed (3-star Defensive Tackle) – Alabama/Florida

Shot in the dark

-Laremy Tunsil (5-star Offensive Tackle) – Alabama/Georgia/Ole Miss

-Vonn Bell (5-star Safety) – Alabama/Ohio State/Tennessee

Potential grayshirt

-*Henry Poggi (4-star Defensive Tackle) – Alabama/Michigan

*If grayshirted, Poggi would not “count” (numbers wise) in respect to the 2013 class.

Monday, February 4, 2013

Reuben Foster gives verbal to Alabama...again

For the second time since July of 2011, five-star linebacker Reuben Foster has given his verbal commitment to the University of Alabama for 2013. This time, the verbal pledge comes less than 36 hours before National Signing Day.

Regarded as one of the most decorated prospects in the nation, Foster has been pushed to the forefront during the course of the last calendar year and not so much for his play on the field…but for his drama off the field.

Whether legitimate, or simply an effort to “play the recruiting game,” Foster has been up, down, and all around, with his recruitment which has caused the fans of several major programs to grow weary of what they perceive to be foolish antics. Due to those “antics”…Foster has been vilified in certain circles.

Here is a quick look at Foster’s recruiting journey…

-Foster gives his verbal commitment to the University of Alabama in July of 2011. During this time, Foster is a student at Troupe County High School in LaGrange, Georgia.

-Prior to the start of the 2012 academic year, Foster moves to Auburn, Alabama and enrolls at Auburn High School.

-In July of 2012, one year to the month of his pledge to Alabama, Foster holds a press conference to break his verbal commitment with Alabama, and “flips” to Auburn University.

-In December of 2012, Foster decommits from Auburn University and decides to re-open his recruitment.

-Feb. 2, 2013 – Foster takes an official visit to Auburn University.

-*Feb 2, 2013 – Foster leaves during the official visit to Auburn, and is later confirmed to be at the University of Alabama.

-Feb. 4, 2013 – Foster, via television, gives his verbal commitment, for the second time, to the University of Alabama.

*Possible altercation with a current Auburn player? Nothing was, nor has been, substantiated to prove such an incident took place, but this was the “reason” given by many, across the board, for his early departure in respect to his Auburn visit.

Given the timeline above, what is missing is the fact that Reuben Foster is a fabulous football player. Twists and turns aside, Foster is considered the No. 1 player in the state of Alabama, and the No. 1 linebacker in the nation per

Although his journey has been a textbook example of the modern day recruiting circus, when all is said and done, where he signs won’t matter, but how he plays and conducts himself will.

With his newest and latest pledge, Reuben Foster becomes the 23rd verbal commitment to the University of Alabama in respect to the 2013 signing class.