After a few days to review the UA-UGA game (and our future in general)...

JessN

Administrator & Editor-in-Chief
Staff member
Oct 13, 1999
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When you're writing something on deadline and trying to get something out there for people to read after an exceptionally big event like the SEC Championship Game, oftentimes a second viewing will help with things you might have missed, or just wanted to mention again. Also, some general musings on where we are as a program and where I think we're going...

1) Trezmen Marshall played his butt off. I made mention of Deontae Lawson in the recap article, and not to take anything away from Lawson but Marshall had as much to do with our LBs' dominance of Georgia's LBs as anything else. I was glad to see the two former UGA players play big roles. I wish Marshall had been 100 percent the whole year -- there was a time I thought we were playing the wrong guy at his spot, meaning either Jihaad Campbell or especially early in the year, Kendrick Blackshire -- but Marshall really earned his keep against Georgia. I have to believe both he and Jermaine Burton were not treated well in Athens because both of them looked like they had scores to settle ... and did.

2) I mentioned Robbie Ouzts in the recap but then someone directed me to Cole Cubelic's comments on our offensive design last night and he did a nice in-depth on how we used Ouzts to confuse the heck out of Georgia. One of Milroe's last runs (the fake toss that he took for a first down) was set up by Ouzts selling the outside run to the strongside. We also did a lot of three-TE bunch formations in this game and I'm not sure Georgia's LBs have figured it out yet. Cubelic also hinted at this but Georgia's LBs, especially their inside guys, played like crap. To be more accurate, they played dumb. Like they hadn't prepared, or couldn't adjust on the fly. I'm an old-school guy -- I like having a fullback in the offense -- and Ouzts is a good fullback. Can't wait to see what we do with him next year.

3) Recruiting: Our long-term readers can remember when TideFans.com used to actually keep a prospect database, do in-depth film study of prospects and even conduct prospect interviews. That was what the whole NARCAS thing was about that you still see us attach to some of our articles. In the current age of NIL and especially the transfer portal, we have dialed back our recruiting coverage because, while it still means something, it doesn't mean nearly what it used to, and it's 1000x harder to track. How you work the portal these days is almost as important, if not more so, than how you recruit. Recruiting will always build the foundation, but the transfer portal is where you go for the designer touches. Recruiting used to be 50% of my focus here; now it's just another article. To that end, we're probably going to sunset the NARCAS tag and label going forward because we really don't play in that space here anymore.

4) Coaching: I'm not really sure when Nick Saban is going to hang it up but I think if he could have the same level of fun he had this year, he might not ever leave. Having said that, when he does, I suspect it will be very similar to how Gene Stallings did it: He'll pick a big win and go out on it, so that's my way of preparing you for the possibility that we're in the "red zone" of his career right now and it could happen at any time. When it does, you will see us gutted by the transfer portal, too, unless we really get the transition right (which might mean elevating an assistant). I'm going to go ahead and throw this out there because as crazy as it sounds, I believe it might actually happen: Alabama has not had great success with hiring from within, but Tommy Rees may still get that opportunity, if he sticks it out here. My understanding is that he's not going to consider another job this year, but if someone came to me and threw crazy money at me I might change my plans, too. The best thing anyone can say about Rees as a Bama head coaching candidate is that there doesn't appear to be another Nick Saban out there for the taking. So it's not like Bama would be passing up a sure thing if it decided to promote from within.

5) SEC/CFB in general: As much as the sport has changed over the last 3-5 years, it's about to change twice that much going forward. There are multiple court cases going up right now that are challenging everything about how college football is put together. There are some suits asking for billions in back pay and compensation for athletes. If everything hits in the players' favor, it's very likely that many of us, if not most, will find ourselves priced out of the sport we love. As for the NCAA's current plan that is being floated right now -- the "Division Zero" concept that I basically outlined in an article five years ago at least -- that's where we're eventually going to go, and we're probably going to eventually do it with a collective bargaining agreement with players. Once that happens, I don't know who the winners and losers are going to be, but I know we're in a far better position than a lot of our rivals. On the other hand, we're not in as good a shape as Texas, Texas A&M, Notre Dame (if it wants to play ball, that is), Michigan and others that have deeper booster pockets. It's too bad Saban isn't about 5 years younger because I really would like him to be in charge during this transition. As for the SEC, I would like to see the conference work behind the scenes with the Big Ten to ensure the futures of both organizations. I think you could take those two conferences alone and make your superdivision. You could even afford to continue to drag Vanderbilt and Northwestern along by the hair. I never thought I'd see the day when the PAC-12 would go the way of the WAC, but here we are.
 

Toddrn

All-American
Nov 29, 2006
2,342
3,048
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Woodstock, Ga
When you're writing something on deadline and trying to get something out there for people to read after an exceptionally big event like the SEC Championship Game, oftentimes a second viewing will help with things you might have missed, or just wanted to mention again. Also, some general musings on where we are as a program and where I think we're going...

1) Trezmen Marshall played his butt off. I made mention of Deontae Lawson in the recap article, and not to take anything away from Lawson but Marshall had as much to do with our LBs' dominance of Georgia's LBs as anything else. I was glad to see the two former UGA players play big roles. I wish Marshall had been 100 percent the whole year -- there was a time I thought we were playing the wrong guy at his spot, meaning either Jihaad Campbell or especially early in the year, Kendrick Blackshire -- but Marshall really earned his keep against Georgia. I have to believe both he and Jermaine Burton were not treated well in Athens because both of them looked like they had scores to settle ... and did.

2) I mentioned Robbie Ouzts in the recap but then someone directed me to Cole Cubelic's comments on our offensive design last night and he did a nice in-depth on how we used Ouzts to confuse the heck out of Georgia. One of Milroe's last runs (the fake toss that he took for a first down) was set up by Ouzts selling the outside run to the strongside. We also did a lot of three-TE bunch formations in this game and I'm not sure Georgia's LBs have figured it out yet. Cubelic also hinted at this but Georgia's LBs, especially their inside guys, played like crap. To be more accurate, they played dumb. Like they hadn't prepared, or couldn't adjust on the fly. I'm an old-school guy -- I like having a fullback in the offense -- and Ouzts is a good fullback. Can't wait to see what we do with him next year.

3) Recruiting: Our long-term readers can remember when TideFans.com used to actually keep a prospect database, do in-depth film study of prospects and even conduct prospect interviews. That was what the whole NARCAS thing was about that you still see us attach to some of our articles. In the current age of NIL and especially the transfer portal, we have dialed back our recruiting coverage because, while it still means something, it doesn't mean nearly what it used to, and it's 1000x harder to track. How you work the portal these days is almost as important, if not more so, than how you recruit. Recruiting will always build the foundation, but the transfer portal is where you go for the designer touches. Recruiting used to be 50% of my focus here; now it's just another article. To that end, we're probably going to sunset the NARCAS tag and label going forward because we really don't play in that space here anymore.

4) Coaching: I'm not really sure when Nick Saban is going to hang it up but I think if he could have the same level of fun he had this year, he might not ever leave. Having said that, when he does, I suspect it will be very similar to how Gene Stallings did it: He'll pick a big win and go out on it, so that's my way of preparing you for the possibility that we're in the "red zone" of his career right now and it could happen at any time. When it does, you will see us gutted by the transfer portal, too, unless we really get the transition right (which might mean elevating an assistant). I'm going to go ahead and throw this out there because as crazy as it sounds, I believe it might actually happen: Alabama has not had great success with hiring from within, but Tommy Rees may still get that opportunity, if he sticks it out here. My understanding is that he's not going to consider another job this year, but if someone came to me and threw crazy money at me I might change my plans, too. The best thing anyone can say about Rees as a Bama head coaching candidate is that there doesn't appear to be another Nick Saban out there for the taking. So it's not like Bama would be passing up a sure thing if it decided to promote from within.

5) SEC/CFB in general: As much as the sport has changed over the last 3-5 years, it's about to change twice that much going forward. There are multiple court cases going up right now that are challenging everything about how college football is put together. There are some suits asking for billions in back pay and compensation for athletes. If everything hits in the players' favor, it's very likely that many of us, if not most, will find ourselves priced out of the sport we love. As for the NCAA's current plan that is being floated right now -- the "Division Zero" concept that I basically outlined in an article five years ago at least -- that's where we're eventually going to go, and we're probably going to eventually do it with a collective bargaining agreement with players. Once that happens, I don't know who the winners and losers are going to be, but I know we're in a far better position than a lot of our rivals. On the other hand, we're not in as good a shape as Texas, Texas A&M, Notre Dame (if it wants to play ball, that is), Michigan and others that have deeper booster pockets. It's too bad Saban isn't about 5 years younger because I really would like him to be in charge during this transition. As for the SEC, I would like to see the conference work behind the scenes with the Big Ten to ensure the futures of both organizations. I think you could take those two conferences alone and make your superdivision. You could even afford to continue to drag Vanderbilt and Northwestern along by the hair. I never thought I'd see the day when the PAC-12 would go the way of the WAC, but here we are.
After we got in the playoffs, I told my son if we win it all this might be the year. I don't have any idea who will replace CNS. But I told my son it would be funny to beat Texas for the title and then poach CSS.
 

AWRTR

All-SEC
Oct 18, 2022
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I agree that CNS is in the red zone so to speak but I can’t see him hanging it up this year. He’s having a great time and has much of the core of this team back next year so hopefully culture will continue to be good. If he keeps both coordinators that should help him as well.
 

Bamabuzzard

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Aug 15, 2004
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Until it happens, I will take CNS's word for it when he has said he has no plans to retire anytime soon, that he is not a "sit around the house" type of guy, and that he likes to be a part of "something" bigger than him.

Does he look older, yes, he should, because he is older. Does he look tired at times, yes, because he is, but he should. But that doesn't mean he's ready to retire. It just means he has to adjust to his body changing, much like he's had to adjust to all the changes in CFB since 2007. I think him going nuclear less, and "having more fun" is his way of continuing to coach. When he needs to chew butt, apparently Mrs. Terry is letting him know, and he does it.
 

PA Tide Fan

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Dec 11, 2014
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I've said it other times over the years but I think there are only two things that would make Saban retire and those are either health issues or a major drop off in recruiting. As long as he can field a team capable of winning the NC there's no point in retiring unless he becomes bored. Coach Bryant had 232 wins at Alabama and right now Saban has 206 so I think he'll be around at least 3 more seasons (age 75) since that is what I estimate as the time needed to pass Bryant. Maybe he doesn't think about that record at all but it would be fitting for him to do it before retiring.
 

davefrat

All-American
Jun 4, 2002
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When you're writing something on deadline and trying to get something out there for people to read after an exceptionally big event like the SEC Championship Game, oftentimes a second viewing will help with things you might have missed, or just wanted to mention again. Also, some general musings on where we are as a program and where I think we're going...

1) Trezmen Marshall played his butt off. I made mention of Deontae Lawson in the recap article, and not to take anything away from Lawson but Marshall had as much to do with our LBs' dominance of Georgia's LBs as anything else. I was glad to see the two former UGA players play big roles. I wish Marshall had been 100 percent the whole year -- there was a time I thought we were playing the wrong guy at his spot, meaning either Jihaad Campbell or especially early in the year, Kendrick Blackshire -- but Marshall really earned his keep against Georgia. I have to believe both he and Jermaine Burton were not treated well in Athens because both of them looked like they had scores to settle ... and did.

2) I mentioned Robbie Ouzts in the recap but then someone directed me to Cole Cubelic's comments on our offensive design last night and he did a nice in-depth on how we used Ouzts to confuse the heck out of Georgia. One of Milroe's last runs (the fake toss that he took for a first down) was set up by Ouzts selling the outside run to the strongside. We also did a lot of three-TE bunch formations in this game and I'm not sure Georgia's LBs have figured it out yet. Cubelic also hinted at this but Georgia's LBs, especially their inside guys, played like crap. To be more accurate, they played dumb. Like they hadn't prepared, or couldn't adjust on the fly. I'm an old-school guy -- I like having a fullback in the offense -- and Ouzts is a good fullback. Can't wait to see what we do with him next year.

3) Recruiting: Our long-term readers can remember when TideFans.com used to actually keep a prospect database, do in-depth film study of prospects and even conduct prospect interviews. That was what the whole NARCAS thing was about that you still see us attach to some of our articles. In the current age of NIL and especially the transfer portal, we have dialed back our recruiting coverage because, while it still means something, it doesn't mean nearly what it used to, and it's 1000x harder to track. How you work the portal these days is almost as important, if not more so, than how you recruit. Recruiting will always build the foundation, but the transfer portal is where you go for the designer touches. Recruiting used to be 50% of my focus here; now it's just another article. To that end, we're probably going to sunset the NARCAS tag and label going forward because we really don't play in that space here anymore.

4) Coaching: I'm not really sure when Nick Saban is going to hang it up but I think if he could have the same level of fun he had this year, he might not ever leave. Having said that, when he does, I suspect it will be very similar to how Gene Stallings did it: He'll pick a big win and go out on it, so that's my way of preparing you for the possibility that we're in the "red zone" of his career right now and it could happen at any time. When it does, you will see us gutted by the transfer portal, too, unless we really get the transition right (which might mean elevating an assistant). I'm going to go ahead and throw this out there because as crazy as it sounds, I believe it might actually happen: Alabama has not had great success with hiring from within, but Tommy Rees may still get that opportunity, if he sticks it out here. My understanding is that he's not going to consider another job this year, but if someone came to me and threw crazy money at me I might change my plans, too. The best thing anyone can say about Rees as a Bama head coaching candidate is that there doesn't appear to be another Nick Saban out there for the taking. So it's not like Bama would be passing up a sure thing if it decided to promote from within.

5) SEC/CFB in general: As much as the sport has changed over the last 3-5 years, it's about to change twice that much going forward. There are multiple court cases going up right now that are challenging everything about how college football is put together. There are some suits asking for billions in back pay and compensation for athletes. If everything hits in the players' favor, it's very likely that many of us, if not most, will find ourselves priced out of the sport we love. As for the NCAA's current plan that is being floated right now -- the "Division Zero" concept that I basically outlined in an article five years ago at least -- that's where we're eventually going to go, and we're probably going to eventually do it with a collective bargaining agreement with players. Once that happens, I don't know who the winners and losers are going to be, but I know we're in a far better position than a lot of our rivals. On the other hand, we're not in as good a shape as Texas, Texas A&M, Notre Dame (if it wants to play ball, that is), Michigan and others that have deeper booster pockets. It's too bad Saban isn't about 5 years younger because I really would like him to be in charge during this transition. As for the SEC, I would like to see the conference work behind the scenes with the Big Ten to ensure the futures of both organizations. I think you could take those two conferences alone and make your superdivision. You could even afford to continue to drag Vanderbilt and Northwestern along by the hair. I never thought I'd see the day when the PAC-12 would go the way of the WAC, but here we are.
Perhaps he could stick around as the special AD to transition the program.

And maybe I'm dating myself, but I never thought Sears would disappear...and yet it did.

Change is strange...and hard sometimes.
 

Bamabuzzard

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I will go waaaaaaaay out on a limb here, but there is a real possibility that CNS sees "predecessor" material in Tommy Rees and very well may invest in him like we all believe he was doing with P Gold*ng (though it didn't work). If that is the case I can see CNS remaining HC and unofficially teaching Rees how to run a program and allowing him to mature in experience and age.
 

Power Eye

All-SEC
Aug 3, 2005
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I know Saban still seems youthful for a 72 year old, but I would imagine that at some point Miss Terry is going to say she wants some time with him while he's still able to do some things, and at 72 it doesn't take too much to go from perfectly healthy to not well. I want Coach Saban to coach as long as he possibly can, but that's also very selfish of me.
 

DrollTide

All-SEC
Oct 18, 2008
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Burton was on the cusp of costing us games - but he has somehow managed to rein in his antics while maintaining his angry playstyle and elevating the energy of the whole team. It's a strange thing to see an A-player leave a hot program like Georgia, there is a story there I am sure. I felt bad for him that Georgia has been on a streak since he left, but I think he gets his this year.
 

Swanny

BamaNation Citizen
Dec 7, 2004
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I agree that CNS is in the red zone so to speak but I can’t see him hanging it up this year. He’s having a great time and has much of the core of this team back next year so hopefully culture will continue to be good. If he keeps both coordinators that should help him as well.
I hope you are right. But I do remember when Dean Smith retired from UNC basketball in 1997. Word was he wanted to leave an experienced team for his successor, Bill Gutheridge to ease transition. Vince Carter and Antawn Jamison led them his first year to final 4 when they lost in the semis to Utah. Now, not to equate basketball to football nor Saban to Smith, but I do think CNS would like to leave the program on high level as possible so there isnt too much of a dropoff. The other intersting thing about Smith's departure, is that he waited until almost start of bball season so they really didnt have option to search for outside candidate.
 
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Padreruf

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Feb 12, 2001
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Burton is a great athlete/receiver, but he has no class. It looked to me like he was shouting obscenities at the fans in Auburn and the UGA fans after the championship game. He's on the edge of being out of control a lot of the time during games. Maybe that's the way he psych's himself up...I've only seen that work in defensive players or OL.
 

92tide

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Burton is a great athlete/receiver, but he has no class. It looked to me like he was shouting obscenities at the fans in Auburn and the UGA fans after the championship game. He's on the edge of being out of control a lot of the time during games. Maybe that's the way he psych's himself up...I've only seen that work in defensive players or OL.
i've heard the georgia fans have been giving him and marshall a lot of crap since they left
 
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