Crimson and White Roundtable Round-up

This should have been up on Friday, but Sunday evening is good enough…. right?

It will be interesting to see who exactly had a good feel for the game. Alabama did win by a score of 24-20 over Ole Miss, but most were expecting (hoping?) for more. It was closer that it really needed to be, but I’ll always take a 4 point victory in an SEC game.

Click the link below to read our responses.

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The Crimson & White Roundtable- Host Edition

I’m back, and I’ve brought the CWR with me!

I will perform the hosting duties this week, which hasn’t happened since I first started organizing this Roundtable forum. It seemed like so long ago….

Remember when this guy used to coach? Talk about forever-ago!

Since last week was an idle weekend, I decided it would be best to avoid the standard questions concerning Bama’s last performance. Therefore, this week’s set of questions is rather short and simple. I have been known to over analyze certain situations in order to have something to talk about, so this could start to sound like the inconsistent rambling of a crazy man. Let’s overreact!

1. What are your feelings on Alabama’s current position in the polls? Are we Overrated? Underrated? Just right?

It is probably for the best that Alabama isn’t ranked #1 right now. While I would like to see it for the first time in years, that is more added pressure than I am comfortable with right now. We’re about to play a team that beat a top 5 squad on the road and Tennessee. I know the Vols have been down recently, but you never know what’ll happen in a rivalry game.

2. Kentucky’s Defensive Line gave Alabama an afternoon of problems. Considering that Ole Miss is said to have a better D-Line, is there a cause for concern, or our we just over-reacting to a tired team’s performance?

Even though some will automatically say “no, they were just tired”, I thought this would be a good question to make others sit back and consider the fact that injuries could really mess up our Offensive Line.

Think about the Andre Smith injury, and the mini-hold fest he had once he came back into the game with a tweaked elbow. You also should remember the Tulane game when Andre and Marlon Davis were both injured. This is a squad we really need to stay healthy for our offense to continue to play well. Hopefully, game changing injuries won’t happen again*knocks on wood repeatedly*.

Big Andre will carry this offense whether they like it or not.

If injuries do start to take their toll on our physical O-line, then bad things could start to happen to both the offense and defense. We’ve got talent on the 1st team, but we’re mighty thin when it comes to the 2nd string on down. The offense could start to sputter, forcing the defense onto the field longer that we would like. They’ll get tired, and could possibly break down towards the end of games.

Maybe I’m just an overly cautious guy, but I do think my concerns are legit.

3. What part of Alabama’s team concerns you against Ole Miss? Likewise, what aspect of the game should Alabama control?

With the domination of Clemson, Arkansas, and Georgia, most people have spoken very little of the problems we’ve had when it comes to Pass Defense. Clemson had no O-line, so it really never showed up, but it has given us a few problems from game 2 on. Matthew Stafford is going to get his stats no matter where you go, but they certainly were able to make the game much tighter with an impressive air assault. Even Mike Hartline of Kentucky looked fairly good when he was handing the ball to Rolando McClain is terror.

Jevan Snead is one of the better QBs in the country, so we better be prepared to see the guy tossing the ball around as much as he can…. whenever Nutt isn’t running his Wild Tecmo-Cat-Hog-Rebel formation.

I got a TD!…. Did that dude just wet himself?

If our Pass Defense has been a tad bit suspect, our Run Defense has been the Steel Curtain. Mount Cody and crew have been shutting down top back after top back, and I’m not sold on any Ole Miss Offensive Lineman not named Michael Oher having the ability to stop them.

If we can stop Spiller, Davis, and Moreno, then we can stop most anybody in the country (in theory).

The Crimson and White Roundtable

Sorry for the delay, but here we go with the CWR. Todd from Roll Bama Roll is hosting this week, and he brings us these 5 questions.

1. What are your feelings on Alabama’s current position in the polls? Are we overrated? Underrated? Just right?

If you had told me in August that Alabama would have a legitimate argument at being the #1 ranked team in America, I would’ve checked your noggin for frying pan bruises.

Based on what we’ve achieved, I am more than willing to admit Alabama deserves the ranking. We’ve got the best win in the country. For every BCS opponent we’ve played, we blown them out of the water (Georgia did make it respectable).

2. What aspect of the game did Alabama control that shocked you the most? What aspect of the game was Alabama dominated in that shocked you the most?

The entire 1st half. I know, I know… everyone has said that, but that doesn’t take away the face that is is true.

As for being dominated, I’d have to go with Special Teams. That blocked punt was awful to watch due to the lackadaisical “going through the motions” attitude we seemed to take on that play. Add in the on-side kick and that TD on the return (yes, I heard about the refs. That still does not excuse everyone else), and it was a HORRIBLE night for Special Teams. They could cost us a game or two if they don’t get their act together.

3. Name your player of the game on Offense. Also name one on Defense.

On offense, you have to give it to John Parker Wilson. He was efficient, smooth, and in control the entire game. That TD pass to Julio was a thing of beauty, something we have not seen from John Parker as often as we would like.

On defense, I would give it to Justin Woodall. When you analyze that 2nd half comeback, a TD at the end of the half would’ve been a HUGE disaster for Alabama. But, Woodall made the Interception, and kept the score at 31-0 at the half. Add in his 5 tackles, and I’d say you have yourself a defensive MVP.

4. The Wildcats are a very quiet 4-0 with lackluster wins over Louisville, Norfolk State, MTSU, and Western Kentucky.  Obviously every game in the SEC is going to be a tough one and the Tide could be in danger of a letdown after such a huge win, so are you at all worried about UK?  Why or why not?

Yes, I’d say there is a cause for concern. Our special teams looked horrid last weekend, so Kentucky could be allowed a few easy points due to poor kick-off coverage. We also know that the Tulane game will be the mantra for every team coming into Tuscaloosa now that Alabama has the proverbial target on our backs.

Don’t forget that Rich Brooks has turned this program around, earning a win against the eventual BCS champion LSU Tigers. Of course, this all depends on how focused and well prepared Alabama is when the game starts. I’ve seen some of this extra love in the TV coverage, and it does make me rather uncomfortable that Antoine Caldwell watched a lot of it on ESPN.

5. John Parker Wilson is a new man this season, looking the kind of savvy game manager that can make just enough throws to keep defenses guessing we need in this offense.  What’s your take on his sudden emergence, and are you comfortable with him under center in clutch

How can you not have more confidence in JPW? He got us our biggest win of the decade, something that Watts, Zow, and Croyle were unable to do. I hope it doesn’t go to his head, but I think he’s finally getting that inconsistency issue out of his system.

Crimson and White Roundtable

Who’s ready for a Crimson and White Roundtable? Alabama Gameday is, as they host this week’s CWR. Let’s get down to bus-nass (business for those of you who don’t understand what I just said):

What are your feelings on Alabama’s current position in the polls? Are we overrated? Underrated? Just right?

Given all of Alabama’s accomplishments thus far, it makes sense. If we beat Georgia (big if), then the high ranking we get will always be deserved.

What aspect of the game did Alabama control that shocked you the most? What aspect of the game was Alabama dominated in that shocked you the most?

I was shocked at how well Alabama’s defense played in the redzone. In between redzones, our D wasn’t extremely impressive, but they did shut down the Hogs when it mattered most.

Alabama really looked bad on punt return coverages throughout the game. Sure, it was better in the 2nd half, but every other team we face should have a speedster back there in waiting. We can’t allow easy TDs or easy field position if we are to make it to the next level.

Name your player of the game on Offense. Also name one on Defense.

Is there any doubt that the Offensive player of the game should be Glenn Coffee? The guy averaged over 16 YPC against Arkansas!

Javier Arenas should get the Defensive game ball for that returned INT for the TD, as well as his ability to be all over the field.

Alabama has dominated the first quarter, outscoring opponents 64-0 in the first quarter. How do you think this team will handle its first taste of adversity this season?

That really all depends on John Parker Wilson. We’ve all seen how he’s faltered in key situations, and we all remember the heartache it has caused us all. If he can FINALLY get over the hump and perform well in a big road game, then I’ll be feeling pretty good about this season. I don’t think we’ll beat Georgia, but a good performance could mean good things for the Tide this season. But more on that later…

If JPW gets intimidated by the”BLACKOUT”, then we might as well watch M*A*S*H reruns on TV Land. Hopefully, John Parker will envision Britney Spears every time somebody mentions “BLACKOUT”, so he can simply laugh at every single reference.

When will Mark Richt drive with his newborn in his lap?

Setting aside Georgia, now that the season is well underway, how do you feel Alabama stacks up against what you’ve seen of their big opponents?

Alabama’s Offensive Line should match-up to no less that even with every other team’s Defensive Line. Why? We’re strong, physical, and experienced. If we take care of business against Kentucky and Ole Miss, I am starting to like our chances against Tennessee’s offense (knock on wood)… unless they find a way to totally turn around Crompton and crew.

Crimson and White Roundtable

Today might just be a big Roundtable-fest.

3 games, 3 wins, 3 roundtables, and 3rd Saturday…. good times. This week, the CWR is hosted by the folks at Third Saturday in Blogtober. They have shown themselves to be one of the more dedicated CWR contributors, and always provide very good insight.

1. What are your feelings on Alabama’s current position in the polls? Are we overrated? Underrated? Just right?

I wish we weren’t ranked in the Top 10, because going on the road as a TOP TEN TEAM can bring extra fire from opponents, as apposed to an 12th ranked team. In the future, this shouldn’t be of too much concern, but until this team can prove they can be consistent… I shall worry (somewhat).

2. What aspect of the game did Alabama control that shocked you the most? What aspect of the game was Alabama dominated in that shocked you the most?

It was nice to see a total domination on offense. I knew we’d win, but I didn’t know we’d get 500+ yards.

Didn’t really see anybody on Alabama get dominated, but that 4th down TD given up was less than impressive. Effort like that will bury you in the SEC.

3. Name your player of the game on Offense. Also name one on Defense.

Julio Jones had some nice plays, catching the ball 5 times for 66 yards and a TD.

Rashad Johnson had the most tackles, with 7 unassisted. Great games for both.

4. Who on each side of the ball has been the biggest surprise to you so far?

Mark Ingram really seems to be shining so far. I knew Glenn Coffee would get his fair share of carries, and I thought Terry Grant would get some as well, but Ingram has been playing the best out of all of the Freshmen this year. Whenever he gets the ball, the pile just continues to move. It helps to have a sharp O-line, but he is playing the best ball out of all of the offensive skill players.

How about Javier Arenas? The return specialist has 13 total tackles, 2 tackles for a loss, and a sack. How many tackles did he have in 2007? 13. So yes, he’s already reached last year’s total in 3 games. He’s a beast on special teams, and have proven himself to be a player on Defense.

5. The last three weeks were fun, but now it’s time for conference play.  What area of play concerns you now that we’re getting into the more physical stretch of the schedule?

Arkansas doesn’t seem to be the biggest defensive threat in the SEC, so I will worry about how a young defense will handle an aggressive passing attack under Bobby Petrino. Clemson depended on their ground game, but Arkansas appears to be a bit pass happy under the veteran QB Casey Dick. The Hogs have proven themselves to be comeback kids (albeit against lower level talent), so I know they are used to quick drives in the crunch.

CW Roundtable Round-Up

Sorry for such a late post, but my computer has been on the fritz.

Let me just say that Todd from Roll Bama Roll has really done a great job running the CWR. Let’s hope it continues on its path to internet greatness. I’d also like to thank TideFaninTN for this cool logo. Look at how it glistens.

Our participants this week included:

Thank you to all who participated. I know this was a rather short week for the Roundtable, but I am happy with the number of blogs who participated.

This next part is pretty simple. I’ll pick a variety of answers from all of the folks listed above, giving you a good overview of what the Alabama blogs of the world are thinking. I wish I could give everyone an equal amount of space, but with an odd number, some will have to only go with one. More after the jump.
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Crimson and White Roundtable: Redux

It has been placed upon me to continue the Roundtable, something I do with great honor and pride…. mostly for visits though.

After such a performance on Saturday, it seems like a very good time to gather together and gauge the feelings of the Alabama fans and bloggers. We won a game that few thought we could win, something that has to put a smile to everyone’s face. We haven’t had a time to smile like this since last year’s Tennessee beat down, so enjoy it.

Good times for one and all… in Crimson

Since it is rather short notice due to scheduling, I will understand if others cannot participate this week. If you can’t, we’ll all understand. Hopefully, we’ll be able to keep things rolling on an continual basis.

1) Due to that colossal victory over a Top 10 team in Clemson, Alabama has shot up in the polls (13th in AP and 17th in Coaches). What are your feelings on Alabama’s current position in the polls? (Too High? Too Low? Just Right?) Expound on this if you can.

I would be happy with 15th place considering we’ve only played on game, so I guess it evens out when you consider the two positions in the polls. We need to play some SEC football before I start complaining about being ranked “too low”.

Early season poll rankings are starting to mean less and less. If you don’t like where your team it today, you certainly have plenty of opportunities to gain some ground. Just look at the 2007 polls, the most fluid of my lifetime. It seemed like a top team was falling every week. So don’t panic, because this thing will probably be very different come October.

2) We’re all a little shocked at how much Alabama dominated that game on Saturday. What aspect of the game did Alabama control that shocked you the most?

Even though I created this question, I have to admit it seems a bit open ended considering how well things went on Saturday. I guess my one shock was our ability to not crumble after a few big plays by Clemson. With that Ford catch, and later the Spiller TD,  thought it would become a very close game that we might lose. But, we responded in a manner unlike 2007 with our ability to finish the game. The only question now is can we avoid the late season collapse that has mired us in mediocrity for the last few years?

Think about it; we’ve actually had some pretty respectable performances until the end of the season year after year. Even though that is when we play LSU and Auburn, we’ve still had the likes of ULM and Mississippi State to deal with (two non-juggernauts of football). We’ve got to stay tough, and I think this year we just might do it.

3) Name your player of the game on Offense. Also name one on Defense.

On offense, you have to give it to Mark Ingram. The Freshman Running Back was the rookie of the weekend if my opinion, gaining a ton of yardage against a highly vaunted defense from a year ago. He’s got the speed, toughness, and plowing ability that you need in an SEC RB.

on defense, I’d go with Terrance Cody, as I am sure most of you will. He’s 360+ lbs, and can still do a 360 degree slam dunk. With his agility, he created tons of problems for Clemson last Saturday. If we are to have a big time D-line this season, Cody will be the key kog for Alabama.

Crimson/White…. ROUNDTABLE!!!

Back to back roundtable posts…. I’m tempted to just bask in the glow. After all, blogging is serious business, and society should always appreciate when we bloggers bestow our graceful wit and insight to you, the reader.

In all seriousness, I am the host of this week’s roundtable. I have thought long and hard about what questions to ask our roundtable members. I’ve tried to avoid repeating everything in previous topics, providing questions that I hope will cause everyone to not only think, but have a healthy conversation in the comments section. We’ll see if it is successful or not.

1) Complete this sentence: Alabama’s biggest improvement from the 2007 season will be __________.

Alabama’s biggest improvement from the 2007 season will be the Offensive Line. Yes, I will drink the O-line kool-aid. We have a senior Center and a stud of a Left Tackle, two positions that are of great importance in football today. If they can finally live up to expectations (and I think they will), our offense might finally start rolling.

2) Who will be the unsung hero of the 2008 Crimson Tide? This is a player that hasn’t received any pre-season attention, nor will he receive any post-season attention from the media. Yet without his presence, the Tide would be lost.

Most people might not look to the special teams, but I think it could very well be Leigh Tiffin. I know that Corey Smith may end up being the better Kicker when it is all said and done, but I think Tiffin will be somebody we need to perform. Kickers rarely get the praise unless they hit a big field goal against a big time opponent, but they sure do seem to get the blame when it comes down to missing a kick or two (see Arkansas 2006).

He seemed like he was trying very hard to improve last year, and I think we could all agree that he gave us a good effort throughout the season. He’ll have experience on his side this year, which will hopefully mean a good performance in Fayetteville and many other road games.

3) This is a rather vague question considering we haven’t even started fall practice, but what bowl game some we expect for this Alabama team?

No more bitter cold nights in Bossier City/Shreveport for this blogger. If I had to just pick it right now, I’d pick either the Peach Bowl (stick with this name!!) or the Outback Bowl. I’d take a Liberty Bowl, but I would not be an extremely excited Bama fan.

4) This next one has to do with the recent hub-bub over the sabbatical Kenny Stabler is taking from the radio broadcast. I would like you to pick your ultimate Alabama football radio broadcast team. Pick an announcer, color analyst, a sideline reporter or two, and anything else you’d like to add.

Eli Gold 2.0 (Announcer): I know some don’t like how he rambles on, or how he fails to mention the down, time, and score, but Eli is a great talent that I don’t think we really need to let go at this point. I’d upgrade him to Eli 2.0 so we could get the down, time, and score more often, but I still like Eli all the same.

Joe Namath (Color Analyst): I know, some opposing fans might giggle at my choices of replacing a man with alcohol issues with another man with past alcohol issues, but I don’t care at all. The radio broadcast is for Alabama fans. Namath brings years of experience, blunt honesty, and great personalities that would delight listeners to no end.

Barry Krauss and Shaun Alexander (Sideline Reporters): Even though I’m still hoping for Shaun to get another shot at the NFL, I understand that his days would be numbered even if he got a contract. But, if he was willing to participate in state wide radio broadcast, I think Shaun would give the younger Tide fans a thrill on the radio. He’s friendly, humble, and just plain popular. I think Krauss has done an excellent job so far, so I’d keep him.

Tom Roberts (Pre/Post-Game Host): I like Tom, I really do. But, he isn’t a color analyst, and really does well with the radio show (even though some of his questions are not the best in the world). He’s loyal to Alabama, and has a good cadence while on the air.

Crimson and White Roundtable (3rd Edition)

Well, I have been gone the last few days. I’ve been seriously thinking about going into retirement/semi-retirement due to recent changes in my life. I just graduated college, I’m about to start working very soon, and *wink wink* OTHER parts of my life are requiring the attention they deserve.

So, I’m letting you know you’ll be seeing less of me in the future. I’ll still be around from time to time when something major happens to offer my opinion and coverage. But, I just don’t think I need to try and run a daily blog when I’ve got other things in my life now that I won’t be having as much free time that college students normally have.

To be fair, I will participate in the CW Roundtable since my fellow bloggers gave their time in answering my questions. I think it is a fun, light hearted event we have that everyone enjoys.

Picture Me Rollin’ is the host, and he brings us these thought provoking questions:

1. Other than the contest against Little Brother, what do you think is a “must-win” for Alabama this season?

How about the match-up between a TV and my soon to be crimson colored fist if we lose the Iron Bowl?

But in all seriousness, I guess it would be Mississippi State. Yes, the Starkvillians have been a small thorn in our side these past two years due to an active effort of trying to lose by our boys in Crimson. Seriously, have you ever seem Alabama flatter against an SEC team than MSU these past two years? If we lose to Tennessee, I’ll be unhappy, but fine considering the amount of chatter towards Alabama fans doesn’t scale down when we crush them.

2. Every year there seems to be a player that no one is really talking about pre-season that garners accolades by the end of the year. Who will that be for Alabama this year?

Earl Alexander at WR. He had himself a very good A-Day performance, and we desperately need a few Receivers to step up and fill the shoes of Hall, Brown, and Caddell. He is tall, quick, and fairly strong, and doesn’t seem to be garnering much attention with the likes of Burton Scott and Julio Jones getting all of the media coverage.

3. In your opinion, how many true freshmen will start against Clemson? How many will start against Little Brother?

We may actually see more against Clemson since it will probably be a testing out period for a portion of the game. Sure, we do want to win, but it is only one game and we need to figure out who can step up during a pressured situation.

As for the Iron Bowl, I really hope that we see the exact number needed for a victory, whatever it may be.

4. Pick one player on offense and one on defense and give a match up with an opponent that you are really looking forward to watching this season.

Bama’s O-line vs. LSU’s D-line.

Rolando McClain vs. anybody.

5. What, if any, SEC school’s head coach will be out after this season?

Steve Spurrier. Having been to Columbia, South Carolina numerous times, I can tell you that it is a nice place to visit and possibly live (I never got to see the suburban areas, so I can’t speak for them. And yes, I know the Danny Ford boys might be disappointed in me for saying such a thing). But, it is not a football hot bed, nor will it ever be a football hot bed. He’s over the age of 65 and has really looked worn down and tired of being at a program that isn’t moving up as quickly as he had hoped. Adding all of that together, it just seems that he may step down in the next year or two.

I’m not saying that he will do it, but he seems the most likely to me. There is Rich Brooks, but I really haven’t seen him looking to worn down.

The Crimson and White Roundtable

Welcome to another Crimson and White Roundtable!

Last week, I was your host. This week, Todd from Roll Bama Roll is your host, and he brings up 5 thoughtfully crafted questions regarding college football.

1. We have a poll up at RBR about what was the biggest SEC upset from last season. What is your pick and why?

In a season where upsets were happening left and right, I’d say Kentucky over LSU for a number of reasons. First, you have to remember that even though others were falling, LSU was seen as the Gorilla with a chainsaw…. thingy that was just going to waltz to the BCS title game. Secondly, even though we all thought highly of Andre Woodson and the Cats, LSU’s defense was supposed to be this monstrous force that could only be defeated by tossing Glenn Dorsey’s knee into the fires of Mount Doom. We all know SEC teams win with defense…. right? Finally, I remember how crazy it was once that actually happened. The college football landscape went crazy for a while, even though LSU ended up in the title game through a completely crazy finish.

2. Looking ahead to this season’s schedule, what games do you see as being the deciding factors in who will win the SEC?

Most will say UGA vs. Florida, and I can see where they are coming from. But, for arguments sake, I’ll go with…… Tennessee at Georgia, because the Dawgs have had a tough time getting past the Vols early in the season the past two years. If that Georgia defense is going to be any good, they’ve got to keep the Vols under the usual 30 to 40 points the Dunkin’ Donut Brigade has been scoring on average. If they can’t get past Tennessee, then that Florida game could end up being not so special after all.

3. Phil Steele and Athlon have Florida ranked #1 in the country with UGA coming in at #9 and #5, respectively, while Lindy’s likes the Dawgs at #1 and Florida at #6. Obviously both teams can’t represent the East in Atlanta, so which team do you think will wind up playing for the title and a berth in the Sugar Bowl (or National Championship Game), or do you think it’s possible neither team will be there at the end of the season?

I personally think Florida will be improved, but I wouldn’t be shocked if Tennessee makes a few surprise moves this season. Of course, the only thing that could hold UT back is trying to break in a new QB, but other than that I’ll still probably say Georgia by a nose. I personally think Georgia will be lucky to escape with 1 loss, but that shouldn’t keep them from Atlanta.

4. It’s a little early for a “traitor’s draft” since we don’t know who the starters are going to be until the fall, but since football is a year long affair let’s go ahead and have one. If you could trade two Alabama spring starters, one offensive and one defensive, for their counterpart on any other SEC team, who would you trade and why?

Give me Eric Berry from Tennessee on defense and Knowshon Marino form Georgia on offense. I guess I would trade Lionell Mitchell and Terry Grant. I’m a big fan of Grant, but I just wonder if he’ll stay healthy for us. As for Mitchell, I respect him, but we really need a big presence out there in the Secondary.

5. Finally, and just for fun, give me one non-Alabama game you’d love to attend this season (there’s a list of the “Top 40” non-con games of the season here if you need a little help).

I would like to see Arkansas at Texas, because that’s an old time rivalry you just don’t see anymore. I wish Houston Nutt was still the coach for humor and entertainment value. Still, seeing two fan bases that used to have some many bad feelings for each other come back together for a good old fashion hate fest is something special in college football.

I hate you, I hate you, I don’t even know you, but I hate your guts. I wish all the bad things in life happen to you, and only you.

So there is my roundtable response. Again, thanks to Todd from Roll Bama Roll for this week’s questions. Stay tuned later in the week for the Round-Up… or whatever everyone else prefers to call it.