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Unofficial Alabama Crimson Tide Fan Site

EJ Williams is hearing good things from the Tide

Eddie “EJ” Williams is one of the top wide receivers in the 2020 class and the hunt for his commitment consist of some heavy hitters as the Crimson Tide are still punching in the fight for his signature.

Williams is a 4-star wide receiver. He is a product of Central High School  in Phenix City, Alabama,. The Crimson Tide has recruited him constantly since they offered him and Saban’s message about the Process still rings true.

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Antonio Doyle gets offer from Nick Saban

Nick Saban told Antonio Doyle personally about his offer from Alabama on Thursday.

Doyle is a 2020 4-Star outside linebacker and is a product of Lutheran High School in  Hazelwood, Missouri,. With Alabama’s offer, he now has 29 Division 1 offers. The success Doyle has enjoyed on the recruiting trail has him feeling like all of his dreams are right in front of him.

“I am blessed by God,” Doyle said. “Everything I ever wanted is in front of me, now I have to go get it.”

Saban spent some time talking to Doyle about his offer and what he could accomplish at Alabama. Doyle echoed the voices of so many other recruits when talking about how their conversation went.

“Our conversation was straight forward and about business.” Doyle said. “We talked about furthering my life.”

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Alabama OL graded highest offensive player for the Iron

Mark J. Rebilas - USA TODAY Sports

Former college offensive lineman J.C. Hassenauer didn’t get much of a chance to start at the University of Alabama. Sure, he was considered a valuable depth player who could provide a quality spot start here and there, but Hassenauer’s talent meant he was capable of so much more.

So far, he’s been able to prove that in the Alliance of American Football league.

According to Pro Football Focus, the 6-foot-3, 305-pound center has graded out as the Birmingham Iron’s top offensive player through seven weeks of the season. His run blocking grade sits at a respectable 69.8, but it’s been his pass protection (81.6 grade) that’s been the most impressive. In fact, that success has been a major reason for his 75.0 overall grade.

After seeing some time with the Atlanta Falcons as an undrafted free agent back before the 2018 season, Hassenauer could be lining things up for another shot in the NFL. He’s certainly got the talent for it.

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Bama seeks vet coach with no compliance issues

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TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -- Alabama athletic director Greg Byrne is looking for a new basketball coach with a clean record and a college background.

Byrne outlined some of his criteria for the job Monday, a day after announcing the ouster of Avery Johnson after four seasons.

Crimson Tide alum Steve Prohm makes sense, but there are plenty of intriguing options, including Rick Pitino.

The University of Alabama and men's basketball coach Avery Johnson have parted ways after four seasons.

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Five players to watch at A-Day scrimmage

In the long drought of the Alabama Football offseason, the A-Day spring scrimmage game is a bit of a refresher for both fans and players. Here is a list of players I am most excited to see at A-Day. Spring is officially here as the Alabama football team delves into the thick of spring practice. […] Alabama Football: Five players to watch at A-Day scrimmage - Bama Hammer - Bama Hammer - An Alabama Crimson Tide Community - News, Blogs, Opinion and more.
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Alabama Basketball: Greg Byrne to be thorough but expedient in hoops hire

Greg Byrne said Monday he has no timeline on a new head coach hire for Alabama basketball and the reputation of the University would be in the forefront. Alabama basketball is making national headlines as Athletic Director, Greg Byrne searches for a new Crimson Tide head coach. Not much longer than 48 hours ago, conventional wisdom […] Alabama Basketball: Greg Byrne to be thorough but expedient in hoops hire - Bama Hammer - Bama Hammer - An Alabama Crimson Tide Community - News, Blogs, Opinion and more.
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Rick Pitino has interesting response to question about Alabama job

The Alabama Crimson Tide are looking for a new head basketball coach now that Avery Johnson is on his way out with a settlement. Naturally, former Louisville coach Rick Pitino has been mentioned among the potential replacements.

When asked about the chatter, Pitino chose to once more proclaim he never did anything improper at Louisville (or anywhere else), rather than directly respond to that line of questioning.

“The only thing I can say with my broken record is that in my 30+ years as a head coach I’ve never cut a dirty deal or gave any improper benefits to any athletes,” Pitino said, per Adam Zagoria of the New York Times (on Twitter). “All you have to do is ask my over 30 assistants who have become head coaches or any player that has played for me.”

Pitino exited his job at Louisville in disgrace in 2017. During his watch, Louisville’s basketball team was involved in an escort sex scandal. Then he was implicated in a federal investigation into student athletes who received bribes, and he’s been accused of taking a ton of money from Adidas as part of that whole ordeal.

Needless to say, any school that even entertains Pitino is going to have some serious questions to answer, which is why it’s not all that surprising that he felt the need to answer a question about a job opening by defending his past.

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Crimson Tide Softball takes Two of Three at Texas A&M

“You can’t win them all.”
~ Connie Mack

No. 3 Crimson Tide finally succumbed to Lady Loss, dropping the finale of a three-game set in College Station. But fret not. This is softball. It is near impossible to go through a college softball undefeated. Despite the defeat, the real highlights came in the first two games in which Alabama pummeled the Aggies into a pair of run-rule games.

FRIDAY

Alabama 13 Texas A&M 3 (6 innings)

The balls were flying out of the park in the opener as four different Tide players went yard. Bailey Hemphill had a three run shot in the opening frame. Claire Jenkins smoked a solo four-bagger two innings later. Merris Schroder led off the fifth with a moonshot. And Skylar Wallace rounded out the scoring with a 3-RBI round-tripper in the sixth. Bama collected 12 hits on the night with every starter getting at least one hit and one run. Montana Fouts got her 12th win in 5 innings pitched yielding only 3 hits, two runs and 10 strikeouts.

SATURDAY

Alabama 11 Texas A&M 1 (5 innings)

One way to keep Alabama from getting so many hits is walking them (11) and committing errors (3). Game 2 was another short affair with the game halted after 5 innings for the Mercy rule after the Tide battered the Aggies with 11 runs on only 5 hits. Alabama was the beneficiary of one earned and three unearned runs in the first. The Tide tallied up two more home runs, one by Schroder to lead-off the third inning and one by GUESS WHO! Hemphill who stroked a grand slam (her second of the season) later in the same inning. The Aggs managed to push one across in the fourth but this Crimson Tide team has an amazing aptitude for striking back in the next frame after a foe scores and did so again in the top of the fifth for their 11th run on the day. Schroder was 2 for 4 with 3 RBI, HR, and a stolen base. Sarah Cornell (W, 12-0) went 4 and a third innings with Krystal Goodman getting the last two outs.

* 33-0 is the best start by any school in SEC history.

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Jumbo Package: Avery Johnson is out. So, who’s it going to be?

Happy Monday, everyone. The softball team came up just short of the national record for consecutive victories to open a season, losing on a game three walk-off in College Station. The ladies sit at 33-1 with a consensus top five ranking, though the rest of the SEC schedule is daunting. As Roger already told you, baseball took one of three from an excellent Arkansas squad, and the Gym Tide placed third at the SEC Championships and will move on to NCAA regionals, seeding to be announced today.

Of course, most of the buzz surrounds the now officially open men’s basketball coaching position.

Do you go for another veteran looking to get back in the game, a Fred Hoiberg or Thad Matta? Do you go the alumni route with Iowa State’s Steve Prohm? Do you try to raise enough money (see above under “buyout”) to convince a major college coach with a good gig to move? That’s a hard thing to do in college football or basketball, unless you are talking a Jimbo Fisher compensation package? Do you play what is, for want of a better term, Mid-Major Roulette?

Are there any guarantees with “the guy at Buffalo” (Nate Oats) or “the guy at Wofford” (Mike Young) or “the guy at Liberty” (Ritchie McKay)? Would they adjust well to the SEC, or would there be a learning curve and a chance of being in the same boat four years from now?

It would certainly be nice to get someone who has some staying power. Seems like only yesterday that people were buckling their seat belts for the first time. Cecil seemed to tease the fanbase a bit on Twitter last night.

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Early reviews are good on a few newcomers

A third of the way through spring practice, some Alabama football newcomers are gaining the attention of onlookers and the Crimson Tide coaching staff. Alabama football has been in pads for only two sessions but there are only two more practice sessions before the first scrimmage of the spring. Much more will be learned on […] Alabama Football: Early reviews are good on a few newcomers - Bama Hammer - Bama Hammer - An Alabama Crimson Tide Community - News, Blogs, Opinion and more.
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Alabama Baseball Loses To Arkansas

The Alabama Crimson Tide had a mixed bag of play over the weekend when the hosted eighth ranked Arkansas at Sewell-Thomas Stadium. The Razorbacks won on Friday night by a 12-3 score before the Tide bounced back for a 10-0 whitewashing on Saturday. With the series on the line the Hogs bounced back and dispensed of the Tide 10-2. Bama falls to 19-6 overall and 2-4 in the SEC. Arkansas improves to 20-4, 5-1 in the SEC. The Hogs are a legitimate College World Series contender, with talent up and down the roster.

Game One: Lost 12-3

Friday night matched Arkansas ace Isaiah Campbell against the Tides Sam Finnerty. Both have been outstanding all year, but with different styles. Campbell is a big, strong, downhill thrower at 6’4” 235 pounds. In 30 innings entering the game he had walked only four batters and struck out 44. Finnerty is a savvy, veteran, and relies more on guile than on overpowering stuff. While Campbell touches mid 90’s with his fastball, Finnerty is more likely to sit around the 88-91 mph with his fastball.

In his two seasons as the Tide’s Friday night Finnerty you can almost always count on five to seven solid innings, with the team still in the game when he exists. On Friday night the Razorbacks had a different idea. Sophomore right fielder, Heston Kjerstad, a Freshman All American last season, touched Finnerty for a first inning home run to give the Hogs an early 1-0 lead. Things fell apart in the top of the second inning when Arkansas used five singles, a double, and a hit batter to plate six runs and put the game out of reach early. Finnerty was hit for two more doubles and one run in the third, before gutting his way through the fourth inning before leaving, on the wrong end of an 8-0 deficit.

In the bottom of the fifth the Tide looked to make a game of it when they loaded the bases on a John Trousdale single, a walk to Kolby Robinson, and a single by Kobe Morris. A long fly out by Joe Breaux ended the threat. Casey Cobb relieved Finnerty and ate four important innings up, saving the bullpen for the rest of the series. In his final inning of work, Cobb gave up a two run home run to Jacob Nesbit to stretch the lead to 10-0. Freshman Dylan Smith pitched the ninth for the Tide and was touched for two runs on three hits.

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Avery Johnson reportedly out as head coach at Alabama

Avery Johnson, who spent seven years as an NBA head coach with the Mavericks and Nets, is no longer the head coach at Alabama, tweets Jeff Goodman of Stadium. Johnson had reportedly been negotiating a separation agreement with the university since Thursday, and a deal was announced today.

Johnson was mentioned as a possible replacement for Tyronn Lue in Cleveland when Lue was let go in October. Johnson mentored Cavs rookie point guard Collin Sexton during his lone year with the Crimson Tide and may have interest in renewing that relationship in the NBA.

The Cavaliers have said they will search for a long-term head coach once the season ends, and it’s not clear if current coach Larry Drew will be considered for the job.

Johnson spent four years at Alabama, compiling a 75-62 record with one NCAA Tournament appearance. He is 254-186 as an NBA head coach and took the Mavericks to the NBA Finals in 2006.

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Alabama Basketball: Greg Byrne has complicated options in coach search

Alabama basketball is at another crossroad and Greg Byrne is faced with a complicated set of options in hiring the next head coach. Alabama basketball fans want Athletic Director Greg Byrne to hire a game-changer for the Crimson Tide. A coach who can transform Alabama basketball from a currently NCAA Tournament also-ran to a frequent Sweet […] Alabama Basketball: Greg Byrne has complicated options in coach search - Bama Hammer - Bama Hammer - An Alabama Crimson Tide Community - News, Blogs, Opinion and more.
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Nick Saban talked new faces and a missing one

After the first spring practice for Alabama football, Nick Saban talked about all the new faces and the glaring absence of one much-needed player. Alabama football fans have to wonder how badly will the 2019 Crimson Tide be snakebit again. Last season it was an abundance of injuries at outside linebacker. The 2019 season is […] Alabama Football: Nick Saban talked new faces and a missing one - Bama Hammer - Bama Hammer - An Alabama Crimson Tide Community - News, Blogs, Opinion and more.
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Saban says Alabama is lucky to have Sarkisian

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TUSCALOOSA, Ala. -- Alabama coach Nick Saban took issue with the criticism offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian has faced for his brief time with the program during the 2016 season.

Sarkisian was initially hired as an analyst on staff but was elevated to offensive coordinator before the CFP National Championship when Lane Kiffin left abruptly to become the head coach at Florida Atlantic. Alabama lost to Clemson 35-31 in the title game after blowing a 10-point lead in the second half.

Not long after, Sarkisian surprised many when he left for the same position with the Atlanta Falcons. He was fired following the end of last season, and Saban brought him back to replace Mike Locksley, who became the head coach at Maryland.

Nick Saban came to newly hired assistant coach Steve Sarkisian's defense Friday, saying Alabama is lucky to have a guy who the Arizona Cardinals wanted as their offensive coordinator. Tom Pennington/Getty Images

"He did a really, really good job when he was here, and I have a tremendous amount of respect for what he did before he came here as an offensive coach," Saban said of Sarkisian, who was head coach at USC from 2014 to 2015, after Alabama's first day of spring practice on Friday. "And I don't think it's fair to criticize when he takes over a job one week before a game and has to go try to implement something because of the circumstance we were in.

"If you go look at the body of work at the Falcons, they were sixth in offense or whatever, so there has to be some level of expertise to allow them to do that. The players that I spoke to there really thought he did a good job and was a good coach."

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Spring Practice kicks off in T-Town

Alabama football hit the practice field for the first time Friday and based on who did and did not take part, and at what position, there is interesting news. On Friday, the revamped Alabama football staff put the 2019 Alabama Crimson Tide through practice session No. 1 of the spring season. Due to the school’s […] Alabama Football: Spring Practice kicks off in T-Town - Bama Hammer - Bama Hammer - An Alabama Crimson Tide Community - News, Blogs, Opinion and more.
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Alabama Basketball: Tide B-Ball fans should be happy about one thing

College basketball is under duress from a widening FBI investigation. As a result, the NCAA is forced to act. Alabama basketball coach, Avery Johnson has kept the Tide clean. Probably not many Alabama basketball fans are closely following the FBI investigation into college basketball. The Crimson Tide program has not been implicated in any wrongdoing. Former […] Alabama Basketball: Tide B-Ball fans should be happy about one thing - Bama Hammer - Bama Hammer - An Alabama Crimson Tide Community - News, Blogs, Opinion and more.
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Six Tide players could surprise this spring

As Alabama football Spring Practice begins, look to these six lesser-known players to step up and elevate themselves into key roles for 2019. With only 13 starters returning on offense and defense, Alabama football offers many opportunities for lesser-known players to earn key roles. The six Crimson Tide players discussed below could make a big step […] Alabama Football: Six Tide players could surprise this spring - Bama Hammer - Bama Hammer - An Alabama Crimson Tide Community - News, Blogs, Opinion and more.
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Emmitt Smith's son EJ Smith lands offer from Alabama

Emmitt Smith was one of the most dominant running backs in NFL history, and his son EJ Smith is following in dad’s footsteps.

The four-star running back out of Jesuit High School shared on his Twitter account Wednesday that he received an offer from Nick Saban and the Alabama Crimson Tide.

Emmitt’s son has also landed scholarship offers from big-time programs like LSU, Florida, Georgia, Michigan, Nebraska, Ohio State and USC.

Ranked the 96th overall player (247Sports Composite) for the 2020 recruiting class, Smith sure does look the part of a dynamic playmaker.

Clearly, the biggest programs in the nation are following his progress closely. It won’t be long before EJ Smith is doing his thing on national television every Saturday.

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Alabama WR Henry Ruggs reportedly ran 4.25-second 40

Henry Ruggs won’t be among those entering the NFL draft this April, but next year when he comes out of Alabama, his blazing speed will have him on everyone’s radar.

According to Matt Zenitz of AL.com, Ruggs wowed NFL scouts during ‘Bama’s pro day, which took place on Wednesday.

“I’ve heard that NFL scouts timed Ruggs, who had 11 touchdown catches for the Tide last season, in the 4.25 range in the 40-yard dash,” Zenitz wrote.

Now, it’s worth pointing out that these scouts were hand-timing the runs on Wednesday, and that the NFL Scouting Combine uses laser timing. Regardless, that’s a crazy 40, and his speed shows up on tape regularly, too (like this).

Last year as a sophomore, Ruggs hauled in 46 passes for 741 yards and 11 touchdowns for the Crimson Tide.

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