What I Expect In 2007

These statements are based on a mixture of gut feeling and logical reasoning that makes sense in my own head.

  • We will have a very frustrating football team at times. Now, don’t naturally assume that I’m predicting a 6-6 season, because I am not. Teams in transitional periods have growing pains, it is a common thing in sports today. There will be times where we look like a million bucks; however, there will also be times where we look worse than a high school team after fall break. Saban has been hinting towards consistency issues all summer long. Our success depends on how much consistent play we’re able to produce. Don’t expect one summer to be a fix-all type of event.
  • This season will be an all out war between Alabama fans and the rest of the SEC. Don’t expect too much support from other SEC West teams. We’ll see plenty of signs calling Saban a liar, loser, and much more. Expect it to be at an all time high when Alabama plays Auburn (since it is on the road )and LSU (because some of them have gone crazy with rage). Expect some sort of “I told you so!” moment after Alabama’s first loss (as if they were the only ones who said it during the pre-season).
  • The 2007 season depends on how the team does during the first few games. If Alabama is able to survive a string of tough teams (Vandy, Arkansas, Florida State, and Georgia), then we will have a successful 2007. Now, I don’t mean winning the SEC West, but we will at least have a say in who goes to Atlanta and who stays home. We can easily fall apart or shake up the conference. It depends solely on the first half of the season. We will end up full of confidence, or begging for break by playing Houston.
  • Alabama will not lead the conference in total Offense. Contrary to what we’re hearing about the offensive results during the scrimmages, I don’t expect our offense to blow away the conference. We’ll have some weapons in the receiving core, but we won’t set any major conference records along the way. We will break a few UA records. We’re still going against an onslaught of SEC defense after all.
  • The Defense won’t give up 20+ points in back-to-back games during the entire season. Most experts are expecting our defense to be fairly weak. While I don’t think they will be in the top half of the conference in total defense, they will not be horrible. In fact, I expect this group to improve the most by season’s end. We will be able to stop teams from running all over us. Our front seven will look bad at times, but they will be able to rebound and make plays by season’s end. Lucky for us, we’re not going against any true offensive juggernauts during the first half of the season. By the mid point of the season, we will have our sea legs underneath us enough to make something happen defensively.
  • Special Teams may cause you moments of great agony. The new rule regarding ball placement on kick-offs will cause us some frustration. There is also the matter of depth. Saban plans on using linebackers, running backs, tight ends, and safeties on Special Teams. I tend to agree with this statement made by Cecil Hurt of the Tuscaloosa News: “It’s fair to say those aren’t necessarily the deepest areas on the current Alabama roster.”
  • Alabama will pull off an upset. When you look at the games on the schedule, it isn’t too hard to spot when Alabama will be an obvious underdog. I don’t consider Florida State to be an overwhelming favorite, so don’t expect that to qualify as an ‘upset’. The same could be said for Arkansas to a certain degree. So, that leaves us with Georgia, Tennessee, LSU, and Auburn. Out of these four, I fully expect the Tide to win at least one.
  • No assistant coach will be fired after the 2007 season. Nick Saban picked his assistant coaches based on their recruiting skills. They are solid assistant coaches, but he understands that talent is needed in order to win. If he were to fire an assistant or two after the season is over, it would send a poor message to recruits. The assistant coaches have already built relationships in the recruiting hotbeds of the southeast. If Nick Saban is going to rebuild this program, he needs consistency in his coaching staff.

So there you have it. I doubt I said anything that will change the landscape of Alabama football. But, I do think these opinions will stand up on their own for the most part. For now, I suggest we all just relax, check the police blotter, and enjoy this Alabama football preview by the Versus Network:


3 Responses to “What I Expect In 2007”

  1. Dixie's Football Pride Says:

    Call me an optimist but I don’t think the transistion will be that drastic.

    The players seem to have a great respect for Nick Saban. I think every single one of them will go out there and bust their tail in an attempt to please him and the other coaches.Plus with the pressure amped up with the turnout on A Day, the players don’t want to have the finger of blame pointed at them by the fans (see Chris Capps).

    Nick Saban turns teams around quickly. Toledo was 6-5 the year before Saban arrived. They were 9-2 in his first year. Michigan State was a whole different story. He took over a team with sanctions and scholarship losses imposed for using an ineligible player. Yet for a team that had not had a winning record in 5 years , Saban kept their head above water and got them into a bowl game for the next three years. They were small bowls but for Michigan State they were accomplishments. At LSU, the previous team was 3-8. Nick Saban led them to an 8-4 record. Then comes Miami.

    I have always heard that turning any pro franchise around is an extremely difficult task. Salary cap restrictions limit what a new coach can do. It damn near handcuffs them. So when Saban turned a 4-12 team into a 9-7 squad, eyebrows were definitely raised. People were starting to take notice that this guy was a hell of a football coach.

    I believe Alabama is in a better state than any of the other teams he’s taken over. Sure they were 6-7 last year but they were competative in every one of those games except Mississippi State. That was the game that got Shula fired.

  2. WesCrimson Says:

    Well those expectations might be a little dismal. Despite the prevailing “poor mouthing” the team to lower expectations, I still believe Bama will go 10-3 ( Plus or minus 1).

    Early on Alabama will most likely be upset once early in the season (Vandy, Ark or FSU) and will upset at least two others( LSU and Tenn ) later in season.

    Of those 4 tougher conference games, I believe Alabama will beat Auburn and have a chance to win one or two of the other games. Since Georgia is early on, I would expect that they will be the toughest to handle. The other three really need to be beaten to end bad losing streaks.

    Alabama never leads the conference in offense, I just hope the team scores more points than the opponents each game.

    Oh yes, the Bama haters will gloat anytime Alabama loses. I think that will be less the case for SEC fans. Well any that actually attended a SEC school. The only way to stop that is to beat their teams and give them something else to worry about, like when will their teams ever win again.

  3. nixfosix Says:

    “No assistant coach will be fired after the 2007 season”

    How many do you think will resign given Saban’s track record with assistants?

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