ESPN article - Saban and the Bama QB problem

Cruloc

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From the article.

"A former SEC coach said Milroe simply isn't skilled enough in the short-to-intermediate passing game, which is what Alabama needs to keep defenses honest."

"That's not all. Alex Mortensen, the analyst and behind-the-scenes QB guru who spent nine seasons at Alabama, left in December to join the new staff at UAB. On Monday, Georgia coach Kirby Smart said of Mortensen, "He was at Alabama behind all the offenses -- worked with Bill O'Brien, worked with Sark, was there when I was there. I have a lot of respect for Alex."
 

spidermayin

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I started watching Alabama football around 1996 and for the longest time, we didn't have a NFL caliber QB. Then, we have a stretch of QBs: Jalen, Tua, Mac, and Bryce. These are all QBs that are starting for NFL teams. Now, we had a couple of QBs that had very brief stints in the NFL like Brodie Croyle and AJ McCarron, but no true NFL caliber QBs until those four names mentioned above. The early championship years of Saban's tenure, we relied on great RBs, great defense, and a game manager QB that could make a couple of big passes a game. That was the formula for those early championships. The formula for the recent championships has been high powered offense, great receivers, good running backs, and NFL caliber QBs. The defense in recent years has not been suffocating and is more akin to "we'll stop you a few critical drives a game because our offense will score so many points to cover our weaknesses".

This year, our QBs are our weak point. Other college football teams face this reality from time to time and this year it's our turn even though we supposedly recruited well getting Ty Simpson. But, Ty is not there yet. Jalen honestly isn't there yet either, but he's the lesser of the other two evils and give us the best option with his ability to run from pressure.
 

TideEngineer08

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"That's not all. Alex Mortensen, the analyst and behind-the-scenes QB guru who spent nine seasons at Alabama, left in December to join the new staff at UAB. On Monday, Georgia coach Kirby Smart said of Mortensen, "He was at Alabama behind all the offenses -- worked with Bill O'Brien, worked with Sark, was there when I was there. I have a lot of respect for Alex."
What I am most let down by, over the course of CNS's tenure, has been his inability to retain his staff.

I'm not talking about Kirby, Sark, Lane, etc taking head coaching jobs. I'm talking about the position coaches bailing out and following those guys instead of staying with Coach Saban.

Why has this been? For some it was promotion and I get that. Did we offer similar promotions to retain them? But for some, they took the same position at the new place. Why couldn't we keep those guys? Pay? Work/Life balance?

That's the huge issue with me right now. The staff brain drain has finally caught up with us.
 

AlexanderFan

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From the article.

"A former SEC coach said Milroe simply isn't skilled enough in the short-to-intermediate passing game, which is what Alabama needs to keep defenses honest."

"That's not all. Alex Mortensen, the analyst and behind-the-scenes QB guru who spent nine seasons at Alabama, left in December to join the new staff at UAB. On Monday, Georgia coach Kirby Smart said of Mortensen, "He was at Alabama behind all the offenses -- worked with Bill O'Brien, worked with Sark, was there when I was there. I have a lot of respect for Alex."
We’ve been saying that for free lol. Aren’t we smart!
 

92tide

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What I am most let down by, over the course of CNS's tenure, has been his inability to retain his staff.

I'm not talking about Kirby, Sark, Lane, etc taking head coaching jobs. I'm talking about the position coaches bailing out and following those guys instead of staying with Coach Saban.

Why has this been? For some it was promotion and I get that. Did we offer similar promotions to retain them? But for some, they took the same position at the new place. Why couldn't we keep those guys? Pay? Work/Life balance?

That's the huge issue with me right now. The staff brain drain has finally caught up with us.
i can imagine that getting out from under the shadow of saban would be a motivating factor for some
 

BamaMoon

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My glass half full response to this is MAYBE this is just a case of "bad luck" or timing.

Each year, going all the way back to John Parker Wilson and Greg McElroy (who were both recruited by Mike Shula), we've ALWAYS had a guy waiting in the wings.

*After JPW, there was GMac.
*After GMac, there was AJM.
*After AJM, there was Sims and Coker (granted this was a bumpy time) but it worked itself out in a NC under Coker in 2015).
*After Coker, there was Hurts.
*After Hurts, there was Tua (and Hurts again).
*After Tua, there was Mac.
*After Mac, there was Bryce.

Now here we are with no "heir apparent" and perhaps it was bad luck, poor development, poor Covid evaluations or just a combination of them all.

But, (here's glass half full take) maybe we are just a year off from the next great one in Julian Sayin.

Sayin, if you are reading you are NEEDED!!!
 
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rolltide_21

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From the article.

"A former SEC coach said Milroe simply isn't skilled enough in the short-to-intermediate passing game, which is what Alabama needs to keep defenses honest."

"That's not all. Alex Mortensen, the analyst and behind-the-scenes QB guru who spent nine seasons at Alabama, left in December to join the new staff at UAB. On Monday, Georgia coach Kirby Smart said of Mortensen, "He was at Alabama behind all the offenses -- worked with Bill O'Brien, worked with Sark, was there when I was there. I have a lot of respect for Alex."
Of course hind sight is 20/20 but sounds like we should’ve promoted the guy to some type of on the field role.
 

KrAzY3

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Why has this been? For some it was promotion and I get that. Did we offer similar promotions to retain them?
It's pretty simple isn't it? You can't promote everyone! So either every single guy ends up being the offensive or defensive coordinator or they leave, that's just how it tends to work.

Alabama coaches rarely leave for lateral moves, but at the same time every coaching position at Alabama is filled by someone right? Is the solution to every single departure to just promote from within?

Part of the problem is Saban has strict limits on his coaching staff size at Alabama, so he can only ever offer a finite amount of spots. However, all the other coaches out there, including former Alabama guys who are head coaches now (Kiffin, Sark, Smart, etc...) have an equal number of slots.

Just do the math, there will always be more room to move up outside of Alabama than within the staff at Alabama. There's no way to even remotely address that without the NCAA allowing Alabama to retain as many coaches as they want. Then, in theory Saban can go ok, Alex, here's an on field position because we really want to keep you around.

But, just consider what happened. Alex went from an analyst for several years to offensive coordinator at UAB! Are you suggesting Alex get promoted to offensive coordinator at Alabama after never holding anything higher than wide receivers coach at a semi-pro team?

You just can't do anything about that went there are dozens of coaches out there looking to poach Saban's staff and you can't even open up more on field coaching positions due to draconian NCAA rules.
 

davefrat

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What I am most let down by, over the course of CNS's tenure, has been his inability to retain his staff.

I'm not talking about Kirby, Sark, Lane, etc taking head coaching jobs. I'm talking about the position coaches bailing out and following those guys instead of staying with Coach Saban.

Why has this been? For some it was promotion and I get that. Did we offer similar promotions to retain them? But for some, they took the same position at the new place. Why couldn't we keep those guys? Pay? Work/Life balance?

That's the huge issue with me right now. The staff brain drain has finally caught up with us.
Because most of them take a position higher on the food chain than where they were here.
 
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davefrat

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My glass half full response to this is MAYBE this is just a case of "bad luck" or timing.

Each year, going all the way back to John Parker Wilson and Greg McElroy (who were both recruited by Mike Shula), we've ALWAYS had a guy waiting in the wings.

*After JPW, there was GMac.
*After GMac, there was AJM.
*After AJM, there was Sims and Coker (granted this was a bumpy time) but it worked itself out in a NC under Coker in 2015).
*After Coker, there was Hurts.
*After Hurts, there was Tua (and Hurts again).
*After Tua, there was Mac.
*After Mac, there was Bryce.

Now here we are with no "heir apparent" and perhaps it was bad luck, poor development, poor Covid evaluations or just a combination of them all.

But, (here's glass half full take) maybe we are just a year off from the next great one in Julian Sayin.

Sayin, if you are reading you are NEEDED!!!
Purely observational and must my opinion, but I think JPW was better than GMac and probably would have been as good if not better than any of the other QBs on that list other than Hurts, Tua, Mac and Bryce if he'd had a similar supporting cast.
 
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