Nick Saban offers salty, legendary quote about mounting injuries

Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

The Alabama football program under Nick Saban has a seemingly unstoppable flow of NFL-caliber players coming through on a yearly basis. Yet injuries take their toll on the Crimson Tide, just like any other program.

On Saturday, Saban announced that yet another top-tier player, linebacker Chris Allen, was going to miss the season.

Then when asked about the mounting injuries, per Cecil Hurt of the Tuscaloosa News, he retorted with a colorful, legendary quote we’ll censor a bit for you: “You all think that every time something happens, we just s— another player…”

It might seem like that’s the case. After all, no matter how many injuries hit the Crimson Tide, it’s hard to remember a time in recent history that this program wasn’t vying for a championship before sending multiple players to the NFL, where they were first-round picks.

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Saban rants about player injuries

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Tua Tagovailoa, Jalen Hurts warm up in the rain for Alabama scrimmage

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Tua Tagovailoa, Jalen Hurts and Alabama's receivers warm up in Bryant-Denny Stadium before the Aug. 18, 2018 scrimmage.

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Nick Saban faces his toughest challenge yet

With college football kicking off in two weeks, the Crimson Tide will look to defend their national title as they open against Louisville. Considered to be the favorite to win it all again this year, it almost seems to have a different feel this time around. Jalen Hurts, who has led the team to back to back national title appearances, is in a position battle to remain the starting quarterback. On the other side of the ball, the Tide must replace their entire secondary and a large portion of their defense. Nick Saban looks to find himself in uncharted territory, the first coach to win seven national championships. With all of the chatter growing from the media and inside the locker room, this may be one of Nick Saban’s biggest challenges yet.

Jalen Hurts has been a playmaker who rarely turns the ball over and puts his team in a position to win. However, when the College Football Playoffs roll around, he seems to disappear, and the offense begins to struggle. At halftime in the National Championship, Alabama decided to go with the true freshman Tua Tagavoila to boost their offensive game and he led them to a victory in overtime. With the emotions running high after his amazing comeback, fans have become split as they choose sides on who they want to be the starter for this upcoming season. As the media has portrayed it, Tua has taken over the starting job and Jalen is slowly becoming an afterthought. Hurts also spoke to the media stating that nobody, players or coaches, came up to him and asked him how he has felt about the situation. It seems as if he is growing unhappy in Tuscaloosa. The spotlight will be bright and following the two quarterbacks all season. It will be up to Saban to control what his team hears from the media and not fall for “the rat poison.”

Every year the Crimson Tide seems to unload another haul of defensive talent to the NFL and this past year was no different; at least on the surface. This year, the team must find an entirely new secondary as all of their starters have departed for the NFL and a few back ups have graduated. Like always, they are filled with talent, but this time, the actual game experience is very slim. Saban likes to run an NFL-style defense. With a young secondary, it will be interesting to see how long it will take for them to adapt or if the plays will be simplified. To make things even more intriguing, Tosh Lupoi, their new defensive coordinator, will be holding his first coordinator job. Although he has been an assistant for Saban for quite some time, the pressure to oversee the entire defensive unit for Saban is some big shoes to fill in.

As Nick Saban continues to grow older, he also continues to run college football like no other. His teams seem to get more and more talented and they typically sit in a class of their own. He continues to churn out successful coordinators who become head coaches, and he continues to show them who taught them the ropes as none of them have yet to defeat him. This season will be his first attempt to break Bear Bryant’s record of national championships won as he aims for title number seven. He believes he can coach for many years to come, but as we all know, time waits for no one. People in Tuscaloosa have worshiped Bear Bryant’s name as a God for decades, if Nick Saban can find a way to get his seventh title, they will have two Gods. With all of the challenges that Nick Saban has faced, this one may serve to be his biggest yet; but as we all know, Saban is as strong as his defenses.

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Alabama Baseball In The Pros

The Alabama Crimson Tide has had a long history of successful Major League baseball players, with 70 former Tiders making the “show”. Currently there are six on big league rosters as well as 16 in the minor leagues and two playing Independent ball. Here is a capsule of how the Major Leaguers are performing this year through August 14th.

MLB Players:

RHP Tommy Hunter, 32 years old, played at Bama in 2006-07. Was a supplemental first round pick of the Texas Rangers as a draft eligible sophomore. One of five players on the 2006 team to make the Majors. Hunter began his career as a starter and had a couple of really good years before moving to the bullpen after a trade to the Baltimore Orioles in 2011. Since then he has played for the Chicago Cubs, Cleveland Indians, the Orioles again, the Tampa Rays, and now the Philadelphia Phillies. Hunter signed a two year $19 million dollar deal to join the Phillies. After starting the season on the disabled list, Hunter has appeared in 47 games, pitching 44 innings, allowing 49 hits, nine walks, 36 strikeouts with a 3-1 record, two saves, a WHIP of 1.32 and an ERA of 3.89. The Phillies are fighting the Atlanta Braves for the NL East crown. Hunter recently celebrated the 10th anniversary of his original call up to the big leagues (August 3rd).

RHP David Robertson, 33 years old, played at Bama in 2005 and 2006. Robertson was a 17th round pick by the NY Yankees as a draft eligible sophomore. Also one of the five players on the 2006 team to make the major leagues. Robertson celebrated his 10 year big league anniversary in June of this year. After spending several years as Mariano Rivera’s set up man, Robertson took over as closer for the Yankees after Rivera’s retirement in 2014. In 2015 the Tuscaloosa native signed a four year, $48 million dollar free agent contract with the Chicago White Sox. The Yankees traded to get D Rob back in the middle of the 2017 season, and he remains an important part of their loaded bullpen. In 2018 Robertson has appeared in 52 games with a 7-3 record, two saves, 53 innings pitched, 35 hits allows, 17 walks, 66 strikeouts, a 0.98 WHIP and a 3.23 ERA.

LHP Wade LeBlanc, 34 years old, played at Bama 2004-2005-2006. A second round draft pick by the San Diego Padres after his junior season. Still holds Bama record for career strikeouts with 334. LeBlanc had a 24-10 career record at Alabama with a 2.95 ERA. Wade has had a career as a vagabond, playing in 17 different cities and two countries since being drafted. LeBlanc was first called up in 2008 and has spent time with San Diego, Miami, Houston, LA Angels, Pittsburgh Pirates, NY Yankees, Seattle Mariners, Pittsburgh again, Yankees again, and now the Mariners again. In the midst of all that moving was a year in Japan, and several trips to various minor league cities. This season LeBlanc started as bullpen insurance for Seattle, but after an injury to a starter, was moved into the rotation. LeBlanc has blossomed and carries a 7-2 record with a 3.80 ERA in 19 games started. The soft tossing lefty (tops out at 86mph) has thrown 118 innings, allowing 110 hits with 25 walks, 94 strikeouts, and a WHIP of 1.14. The Louisiana native was rewarded with the first long term contract of his career after his fast start, meaning next spring he doesn't have to worry about where he will be.

Catcher Alex Avila, 31 years old, played at Bama from 2006-2008 before being drafted in the fifth round by the Detroit Tigers. Avila was the fourth of the five players to reach the big leagues from the 2006 team. Matt Downs, who retired three years ago, was the fifth MLB player from that great team. Avila made his big league debut in 2009 with Detroit, and has since played for the Chicago Cubs, Chicago White Sox, the Tigers again, and now the Arizona Diamondbacks. Avila signed a two year, $5.5 million dollar deal with AZ in the off season. Avila has suffered many injuries over his career, the most serious being multiple concussions. Changing to a hockey like mask and changing his positioning behind the plate has helped curtail that problem. The Pembrooke Pines, Florida native has struggled with the bat since his breakout 2011 season when he won the Silver Slugger Award after hitting .295 with 19 home runs and 82 RBI’s, and being the American League starter in the All Star Game. This year in a back up role, Avila is hitting .171 with five home runs, 15 RBI, five doubles, with 28 walks and 69 strikeouts in 146 at bats. After coming off a stint on the DL, Avila has hit .286 over his last 10 games.

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Bobby Petrino guarantees Louisville will beat Alabama

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Originally posted on Larry Brown Sports  |  By Grey Papke  |  Last updated 8/17/18

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Louisville coach Bobby Petrino is raising expectations ahead of his team’s season-opening tilt against Alabama.

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Alabama Football: In Najee Harris’ life, football greatness the least challenge

For most Alabama football players excelling on the field is their most demanding challenge. For Najee Harris, football is the easiest of life’s dilemmas. It is a long way from the lesser known locales in the Bay Area of California to Tuscaloosa. The physical distance is considerable. For Alabama football player Najee Harris, the locations are worlds apart […]Alabama Football: In Najee Harris’ life, football greatness the least challenge - Bama Hammer - Bama Hammer - An Alabama Crimson Tide Community - News, Blogs, Opinion and more.Original link
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Five-star big man Armando Bacot commits to North Carolina Tar Heels

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Five-star big man Armando Bacot announced his commitment to North Carolina on Thursday.

Bacot, the No. 21-ranked recruit in the 2019 ESPN 100, chose the Tar Heels over a final group that included Duke, Oklahoma State, Georgia and VCU. North Carolina was considered the heavy favorite for most of the past few months, although Duke made a renewed effort toward the end of July.

Bacot, a 6-foot-10 center from Richmond, Virginia, who attends IMG Academy (Florida), is coming off an impressive July in which he cemented himself as one of the top big men in the country. He won MVP honors at the Nike Peach Jam, leading Team Takeover to a championship, then helped lead them to another title at The 8 in Las Vegas.

Bacot averaged 14.7 points and 11.0 rebounds in bracket play at the Peach Jam, including a 14-point, 14-rebound effort in the championship game.

The Tar Heels will honor coach Roy Williams, who has won three national titles in his 15 seasons at UNC, by naming the basketball court after him.

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Alabama Football: Training Days, Episode Two

ESPN’s “Training Days: Rolling with the Tide” continues its deep dive into the Alabama football program, this time focusing on several key assistants and, of course, Kobe Bryant. The second episode of Training Days is a perfect example of why Alabama football fandom could be the secret weapon to our nation’s defense. What would you […]Alabama Football: Training Days, Episode Two - Bama Hammer - Bama Hammer - An Alabama Crimson Tide Community - News, Blogs, Opinion and more.Original link
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Parents of Jordan McNair say Maryland Terrapins coach DJ Durkin 'needs to go'

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NEW YORK -- Marty McNair, the father of late Maryland offensive lineman Jordan McNair, told ESPN on Thursday that football coach DJ Durkin should be fired because he didn't deliver on his recruiting promise -- simply taking care of Jordan.

"When I think of DJ Durkin, all I remember is him sitting at our kitchen table and assuring me that he would take care of my son," Marty McNair said, "and he did anything other than that.

"I think he should be relieved of his job. I don't think that he should be allowed to coach anyone else's child in an environment like this. My child died. That's something we'll never get back. That's something that will never heal. Yeah, he needs to go."

In an interview with ESPN at the Algonquin Hotel, Marty McNair and Jordan's mother, Tonya Wilson, openly grieved the June 13 death of their son as they talked about his final practice on May 29, which ultimately led to heatstroke.

The University of Maryland board of regents has called a special meeting Friday to receive updates about the school's actions in the wake of the June 13 death of football player Jordan McNair.

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Alabama Football: Fall camp session No. 11 with good injury news

Alabama football finished session No. 11 of fall camp Wednesday night. The team worked in full pads and two injured players returned to action. Alabama football worked under the lights again on Wednesday. It was another fall camp session in full pads. There are two more practice sessions this week before the second and last […]Alabama Football: Fall camp session No. 11 with good injury news - Bama Hammer - Bama Hammer - An Alabama Crimson Tide Community - News, Blogs, Opinion and more.Original link
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Alabama has plans to renovate Bryant-Denny Stadium

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Originally posted on Larry Brown Sports  |  By Larry Brown  |  Last updated 8/15/18

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The University of Alabama has plans to renovate some of its athletic facilities, including the football team’s home, Bryant-Denny Stadium.

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Alabama football: Electrifying playmaker Jaylen Waddle impressive

The wide receiver position is a strength for Alabama football this upcoming season. Adding captivating Jaylen Waddle to the mix ensures the Crimson Tide has plenty of elite talent. According to 247Sports, Jaylen Waddle was the No. 5 wide receiver in the nation and the No. 39 overall player in the 2018 class. Read up on […]Alabama football: Electrifying playmaker Jaylen Waddle impressive - Bama Hammer - Bama Hammer - An Alabama Crimson Tide Community - News, Blogs, Opinion and more.Original link
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Alabama Football: Fall camp session No. 10 and other tidbits

Check out what happened as Alabama football reached the halfway point of fall camp. Plus, some other Crimson Tide tidbits. Alabama football completed the first half of fall camp Tuesday. On a hot Tuscaloosa afternoon, the Crimson Tide worked in full pads. Except for Ale Kaho who had to complete his last day of not […]Alabama Football: Fall camp session No. 10 and other tidbits - Bama Hammer - Bama Hammer - An Alabama Crimson Tide Community - News, Blogs, Opinion and more.Original link
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USA Basketball gold medalists share memories from FIBA U17 World Cup, FIBA Americas U18 Championship

By Walter Villa | Aug 16, 2018Special to espnW

Courtesy USA Basketball

MVP Jordan Horston, right, and her teammates at the FIBA U17 World Cup had plenty to celebrate this summer.

It was a golden summer for USA Basketball's U18 and U17 women's teams. For the players, the highlights weren't contained to the court. From Colorado's Rocky Mountains to Latvia's Baltic beaches, their memories dot the globe.

We caught up with several of the gold medalists from the FIBA Americas U18 Championship in Mexico and the FIBA U17 World Cup in Belarus. They shared their most memorable moments.

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Ed Oliver, Rashan Gary, Khalil Tate and others; reranking the 2016 recruiting class

Aug 21, 2018

The 2016 recruiting class was one of the most hyped classes in recent memory. After a run of five consecutive No. 1 classes, Alabama was unseated in 2016 by Florida State. The Seminoles' class was led by No. 5 overall recruit Levonta Taylor, one of nine players who earned five-star ratings from ESPN that year. Three years later, the class has by and large lived up to expectations and also produced some breakout stars. We examined how different the class would look if we reranked players based on their college production. Here are the top 25 players knowing what we know now.

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ESPN 300 Hot Board Five-star predictions

Aug 17, 2018

Recruiting has slowed down a touch now that we are in a dead period and approaching the season. Most prospects will focus on their high school team and put recruiting on the back burner, and that includes some of the top prospects in the nation.

Of the 11 five-star recruits in the 2019 class, five remain uncommitted. While most of them are planning to wait to announce their decisions, there are a select few schools that stick out, helping to make predictions on where those recruits will eventually land. Here is a look at the uncommitted five-stars and where they currently stand.

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Alabama Crimson Tide fans need to check out this exclusive sale

Alabama Crimson Tide fans need to check out this exclusive one-day sale on apparel from Tailgate. Use the code FanSided at checkout to save 20% on your purchase. Before you know it, the Alabama Crimson Tide will be taking on the Louisville Cardinals to kick off the 2018 season. But before the Crimson Tide take […]Alabama Crimson Tide fans need to check out this exclusive sale - Bama Hammer - Bama Hammer - An Alabama Crimson Tide Community - News, Blogs, Opinion and more.Original link
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True freshmen Justin Fields, Trevor Lawrence compete for starting QB job

Aug 15, 2018Emailprint

Trevor Lawrence's reputation was already something of a local legend before he hit high school. His mom, Amanda, remembers being at a restaurant about a half-hour outside their hometown of Cartersville, Georgia, when a man nervously approached, asking for an autograph. Trevor was in eighth grade at the time.

Cartersville high school coach Joey King had heard the hype, too, and he knew Lawrence would be something special. But the first-year coach had another QB on the roster, a 6-foot-5 junior with a strong arm, too. Still, he was curious enough about the kid everyone was buzzing about to invite him out for spring practice, four months before Lawrence would officially begin high school.

Could quarterback J.T. Daniels go from high school junior to USC's starting lineup as Sam Darnold's successor? Daniels is among the first-year players who could make plays from the minute they step on the field.

Preseason all-ACC team, players to watch, words from the ACC commissioner and everything you need to know for the start of the season.

From the All-SEC team to power rankings and Heisman hopefuls, we've got you covered, gearing you up for college football Saturdays this fall.

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Report: Tua Tagovailoa takes lead in Alabama QB competition

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Originally posted on Larry Brown Sports  |  By Larry Brown  |  Last updated 8/12/18

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Tua Tagovailoa took an early lead in the Alabama quarterback competition, according to a report.

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