Alabama Basketball: Avery Johnson pulls in another 5-Star guard

Alabama basketball added to its 2018 class on Friday when Top 30 player, Kira Lewis committed to Avery Johnson. Lewis will re-classify from the 2019 class. In the Alabama basketball 2017 signing class, the Crimson Tide was rated as the No. 8 among all Division 1 teams. The jewel in that class was 5-Star, Collin Sexton. With […]Alabama Basketball: Avery Johnson pulls in another 5-Star guard - Bama Hammer - Bama Hammer - An Alabama Crimson Tide Community - News, Blogs, Opinion and more.Original link
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The must-watch games of the 2018 college football season

Ah, August: that glorious time of year when every FBS 1-A team has an unblemished record and the highest of hopes for the season ahead. By the time the calendar flips a few days into September, all too many of those hopes will have been dashed — but here’s a week-by-week look at the games that should make for great TV, regardless of what happens early in the season.

Matt Stamey-USA TODAY Sports

Week 1 

Washington vs. Auburn: No first-week “cupcake” matchup for the Huskies or the Tigers. I hate to say a Week 1 game could have playoff implications, but this Week 1 game could have playoff implications. Two experienced, well-rounded defenses and a pair of buzz-worthy quarterbacks facing off at a neutral site easily make this the game of the week.

Michigan at Notre Dame: Another early contest between teams that hope to be in the end-of-season playoff discussion. Both of these squads have some question marks entering the season, not the least of which is: How hot are Jim Harbaugh's and Brian Kelly’s respective seats? Week 1 may not provide all the answers, but it’s a starting point. And for what it’s worth, ESPN’s "College GameDay" has chosen South Bend as the site of its opening-week broadcast.

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Alabama Football: Fall camp No. 6 under the lights and the Black Mamba

Alabama football got a break from the summer heat Thursday night. The Tide players also had a special treat listening to NBA legend, the Black Mamba. Alabama football players are the recipients of many lessons. They are taught to be the best players they can become. They are taught a level of commitment and discipline […]Alabama Football: Fall camp No. 6 under the lights and the Black Mamba - Bama Hammer - Bama Hammer - An Alabama Crimson Tide Community - News, Blogs, Opinion and more.Original link
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Nick Saban says Jalen Hurts’ criticism will not affect QB situation

Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

Nick Saban on Wednesday responded Jalen Hurts’ criticism of the coaching staff.

Hurts told the media on Saturday that none of the Alabama Crimson Tide Coaches had communicated with him or checked with him about how he was feeling about the quarterback competition. Hurts, who was the Crimson Tide’s starter the past two seasons, is competing with Tua Tagovailoa for the starting job. Tagovailoa came in after halftime of the national championship game and led the Tide to victory.

Saban says that Hurts’ comments and criticism will not affect the competition, via AL.com’s Michael Casagrande:

“I don’t think it has any effect on our team. I’ve talked to a lot of our team leaders. The players are focused on what they need to do. The rhetoric will not have anything to do with who’s the quarterback. That will obviously be decided on the field by how people execute, how they do their job."

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Nick Saban: Jalen Hurts' comments won't have any impact on QB competition

Butch Dill-USA TODAY Sports

Recently, Alabama quarterback Jalen Hurts made national headlines for venting a bit about the quarterback competition, the transfer rumors that emerged this offseason, along with Nick Saban and his coaching staff.

“No one came up to me the whole spring, coaches included, no one asked me how I felt,” Hurts said, per AL.com. “No one asked me what was on my mind. No one asked me how I felt about the things that were going on. Nobody asked me what my future held.”

On Wednesday, Saban had a chance to respond, and it doesn’t sound like he holds a grudge whatsoever about what Hurts said.

“Every player has a right to express what he feels and what he thinks,” Saban said, via Michael Casagrande of AL.com. “And I think he has every right to do that with every coach or anybody in the organization that he has a relationship with, which we certainly do quite often with all players at all positions.”

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Report: Former five-star LB Ale Kaho transferring to Alabama

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Originally posted on Sportsnaut  |  By Matt Johnson  |  Last updated 8/8/18

The rich get richer. Adam Hagy-USA TODAY Sports

After the University of Washington granted five-star linebacker Ale Kaho his release from his national letter of intent earlier this week, the star linebacker is now headed to the University of Alabama.

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Alabama Football: Business as usual in fall camp session No. 4

Another day of fall camp for Alabama football and no matter what swirls outside the program, inside it is always business as usual. The Alabama football team is still acclimating in Tuscaloosa. Day four of fall camp was the last practice without full pads. The team worked in shorts and shoulder pads. As the heat […]Alabama Football: Business as usual in fall camp session No. 4 - Bama Hammer - Bama Hammer - An Alabama Crimson Tide Community - News, Blogs, Opinion and more.Original link
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How Jalen Hurts' comments will affect the Alabama QB race

9:10 AM ET

Alabama quarterback Jalen Hurts took a lot of people by surprise when he expressed disappointment with how Crimson Tide coaches have handled his competition with Tua Tagovailoa.

All eyes now turn to coach Nick Saban, who speaks publicly Wednesday for the first time since Hurts' comments. How will Saban react and what will Hurts' words mean for the most-watched QB battle in recent memory? We spoke with people close to the Alabama program, coaches from around the country and former players of Saban's to see where they think this goes next.

The feeling in and around Alabama's football offices was that what Hurts said was planned to put it in Saban's lap to see how he would respond. But Saban's plan doesn't change. The Alabama coaches are determined to let it play out on the field and see who's the best quarterback and who instills the most trust among his teammates.

Saban's message to the quarterbacks and the team is they're moving forward and are not going to allow what has been said -- or what hasn't been said -- get in the way of growing as a football team.

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Alabama football: The gap between the Crimson Tide and everybody else

FBS college football coaches overwhelmingly select Alabama football as the nation’s best team in 2018. How wide is the gap between the Tide and everybody else? Alabama football fans don’t need outside sources to bless the 2018 Alabama Crimson Tide as the nation’s best. We enjoy reviewing the polls, mostly to see where future and […]Alabama football: The gap between the Crimson Tide and everybody else - Bama Hammer - Bama Hammer - An Alabama Crimson Tide Community - News, Blogs, Opinion and more.Original link
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Alabama Football: Day 3 of camp with encouraging signs

Alabama football worked in sweltering Tuscaloosa heat on day 3 of fall camp. Early camp news is very encouraging on the defensive side of the ball. Alabama football has another 17 sessions before the end of fall camp transitions to Louisville game week. There will continue to be player development and competition at positions as players […]Alabama Football: Day 3 of camp with encouraging signs - Bama Hammer - Bama Hammer - An Alabama Crimson Tide Community - News, Blogs, Opinion and more.Original link
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2018 Alabama Crimson Tide Football: Fall Camp

Over 200 days have elapsed since Alabama — pleasantly and perhaps uncharacteristically — found itself on the giving end of some fluke bounces, favorable calls, red hot quarterback play, and an improbable comeback victory. In securing the 2018 College Football Playoff National Championship over conference rival Georgia, the Crimson Tide added another chapter of dominance to one of the nation’s most decorated programs, leaving no doubt that it is the standard bearer for the modern college game. And, along the way, the whispers of “is Saban better than Bryant” no longer were sacrilegious pronouncements, they rightly became conventional wisdom.

But, Alabama finds itself in an unique position this year, having sent another dozen players to seek their fortunes on Sundays. The personnel loss isn’t unique, of course. Alabama routinely sees half a score of players sign contracts with the Shield. Rather, what is unique this season is the top-to-bottom retooling that the defense faces. Perhaps at no point since that foundational 2008 season has Alabama’s heart and soul been as long on promise and as short on snaps. The entire starting secondary — even if you’re playing a dime package, is gone. The linebacking corps has and is seeing defections from suspensions and transfer, depth chart casualties, a focus on full-time baseball, ongoing injuries, and the lingering questions of depth following last year’s calamity. The defensive line is in better shape with two starters returning, and a few studs inbound, but again, injuries, graduation, and new jersey numbers will greet Tide fans in 2018. To this, add a complete restructuring of a far younger, but highly motivated and talented coaching staff. Everyone will be learning this as they go along. If there is one takeaway, aside from recruiting successes and numerous youngsters who were pressed into emergency service over the last year, it is this one: This is Mack Wilson’s defense now, uncontestedly so. And you couldn’t ask for a fiercer field general.

On the other side of the ball, Alabama should field its best, most balanced, and most talented offense in school history. That’s not a light pronouncement, but neither is it unwarranted. The question all offseason has been on who is going to get the ball under center. It’s a simple answer: the best player will be the starter. No, rather the better question is where do all of those touches go once the season is underway. The Alabama receiving corps is young, dynamic, talented, and each possesses an unique skill set that almost begs you to throw it 30+ times a game. But, in the backfield, you have two legitimate game-breaking All-American calibre players — and the two or three behind them on the depth chart aren’t far off, or will be soon one day. The skills players will be protected by one of the nation’s nastiest offensive lines — and probably the best that Alabama has seen since 2012. It is a testament that at every position, except for perhaps center, you can make the case that No. 2 on the depth chart could be starting. As with defense, there are a lot of new faces in the coaching staff here too. Though the continuity is such that Alabama should routinely be able to name their score on most nights.

Then we come to the schedule, which is as forgiving as any recent slate for the Crimson Tide. Alabama’s non-conference schedule sees a respectable Arkansas State squad and a Bobby Petrino offense sans Lamar Jackson with a brand new starting quarterback. The East rotation finds a hot mess for the Third Saturday and a Missouri team that is tackle-averse. The West sees traditional rivals Auburn and LSU in the middle of rebuilds and lacking crucial personnel vital to their success the last few seasons. The traditional dregs of the division in Oxford and Fayetteville are both hampered by some spotty recruiting, new coaches, and expectations not commensurate with the talent level. A&M is an intriguing team, of course. Always long on talent but perennially underachieving, the Aggies swapped one inconsistent coach for another. The Ags may be tougher, may be recruit better, may be stronger, but you get the feeling that the end result won’t change quite as much as $70 million-guaranteed dollars would suggest it should, and certainly not in Year One. Which brings us to the intriguing case of Mississippi State. About every four or five years the Bulldogs’ homegrown, cornbread-fed talent matures enough and is coached well enough to put a holy scare into the rest of the SEC. This, despite new HC Joe Moorhead, is just such a year.

Prediction? On the balance of its schedule and its talent, and comparing competitors across the nation, Alabama: Should win every game on its schedule; will face new-look Florida or rematch Georgia and win the SECCG; will face Clemson for a fourth straight season and take home a championship game rubber match next January. Am I bullish? Perhaps too much so. But call this season one that sees Alabama going 15-0, winning back-to-back national championship, places five All-Americans, and sends one Heisman finalist to New York.

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15 best quarterbacks in college football

Originally posted on Larry Brown Sports  |  By Grey Papke  |  Last updated 8/7/18

Where does Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa rank? Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

After a season in which five quarterbacks were taken in the first round of the NFL Draft, it’s time for a new generation of signal-callers to emerge at the college level. There are a lot of rising stars who deserve attention, as well as some established veterans poised to take their place atop the rankings of collegiate quarterbacks.

Here are the 15 best quarterbacks in college football today.

15) Josh Jackson, Virginia Tech

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Report: Alabama a possibility for 5-star recruit released by Washington

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Originally posted on Larry Brown Sports  |  By Larry Brown  |  Last updated 8/6/18

The national champions are in the mix for another talented defender. Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

Chris Petersen announced on Monday that 5-star recruit Ale Kaho has been granted his release by the Washington Huskies, and it sounds like there may be another top program already in the mix for the linebacker.

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Alabama Football: Preseason thoughts on expectations, history and mamas

As Alabama football players prepare for a new season, Crimson Tide fans might do a little preparation by considering history and expectations. Alabama football fans might need some fall camp drills just like the team. We all unrealistically define every season’s success on championships. So much so that the appreciation of SEC championships has waned […]Alabama Football: Preseason thoughts on expectations, history and mamas - Bama Hammer - Bama Hammer - An Alabama Crimson Tide Community - News, Blogs, Opinion and more.Original link
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Jalen Hurts’s mother defends Alabama QB against criticism

Marvin Gentry-USA TODAY Sports

Jalen Hurts dealt with some backlash over the weekend after he criticized the Alabama coaching staff for the way they have handled the team’s quarterback situation, and his mother wants to help set the record straight.

Hurts, who was benched in favor of Tua Tagovailoa during the national championship game, told the media on Saturday that neither Nick Saban nor other members of Alabama’s coaching staff asked him how he felt about the situation until it was too late. Hurts’s mother, Pamela, later took to Facebook to lash out against those who have bashed her son for speaking his mind.

“Wow ignorance is (bliss),” Pamela Hurts wrote in a post, via Justin Smith of TDAlabamaMag.com. “When has Jalen ever spoken to media about anything other than the team? When has he ever whined, pouted or talk about what ‘y’all’ don’t know takes place behind the scenes? There’s a reason why players aren’t allowed to speak to the media. Jalen spoke his truth, finally, after 3 years of being compliant and controlled. You have no idea what is and has been going on — and most likely, never will."

“Folks quick to speak highly on his character and demeanor, but know he is completely opposite of those accolades today. If you can turn on this young man today and not your president for any of his rhetoric, you were never with him to begin with.”

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Alabama Football: Preview of the 2018 regular season games

Going into the 2018 season Alabama football is favored in every game. Check out a preview of each opponent and what to expect from the games. Alabama football fans are perpetually filled with optimism. Our selective memories discard the occasional bad seasons. August is the month for optimism across the college football landscape. From a fan […]Alabama Football: Preview of the 2018 regular season games - Bama Hammer - Bama Hammer - An Alabama Crimson Tide Community - News, Blogs, Opinion and more.Original link
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Lane Kiffin takes yet another shot at Nick Saban

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Originally posted on Larry Brown SportsBy Steve DelVecchio  |  Last updated 8/5/18

A rivalry that may never die. Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Lane Kiffin has taken a swipe at Nick Saban seemingly every chance he gets since the two parted ways prior to the national championship game in 2017, and there is still no sign of him letting up.

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Jalen Hurts is frustrated with Alabama

Mickey Welsh/Advertiser via USA TODAY NETWORK

Things are not going well for Alabama quarterback Jalen Hurts. In fact, he might not be their quarterback for much longer. And per ESPN’s Alex Scarborough, frustrations are mounting.

“…when I see that those things are being said, that’s silly because, ‘He said this, he said that, maybe Coach [Nick] Saban said this,” Hurts starts. “Whoever said whatever, what did Jalen say? Not a thing.”

But how did this all start?

Well, it all goes back to last season’s National Championship game. The Crimson Tide would break Georgia’s hearts in the end, but it wasn’t because of Hurts. Saban would bench him at halftime to bring in Tua Tagovailoa. The rest, as they say, is history. However, Saban has said Hurts might not even be on the roster once the season starts. Is that shocking to you? Because it absolutely is to the former starting signal-caller.

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Tua Tagovailoa, Jalen Hurts throw at Alabama Fan Day

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Tua Tagovailoa and Jalen Hurts at the second practice of the 2018 Alabama Fan Day in Bryant-Denny Stadium.

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Alabama Football: After a silence, Jalen spoke and his words cause concern

Alabama football fans have reason to be concerned about what Jalen Hurts said Saturday before practice on fall camp Media Day. A quick word to all Alabama football fans. Anyone looking for closure on the Alabama football QB situation will not find it here. Any Tide fans interested in Nick Saban being bashed for his […]Alabama Football: After a silence, Jalen spoke and his words cause concern - Bama Hammer - Bama Hammer - An Alabama Crimson Tide Community - News, Blogs, Opinion and more.Original link
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