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I hope the following post proves ONE thing...

Posted by JimL on September 30, 2001

It is ALWAYS better to take a day off after a loss like yesterday's before putting your opinion up on the forum. I had the distinct joy of reading this morning's "Sound Off" in the Mobile Register, and it made me take a step back. No way do I ever want to sound like the drooling, sub-70 IQ types that call in to that place. So I will now make my post game observations for all to read (and flame,if you disagree):

1. We are NOT poorly coached, not anymore. But we were, and for quite a long time. If you will notice, the younger players, and the lesser-used players (Portis, Bacon, Watts, etc.) are playing better than the older ones for the most part. I don't know if you can teach PROPER fundamentals to people who have had pitiful coaching masking as fundamentals in so short a time.

2. We have the worst secondary we have ever had at Alabama. They are poor fundamentally. They are slow, both slow in reaction time and slow afoot. Our best DB is Waine Bacon, a walkon who was ignored by the previous staff. I know it is in our long-term interest to keep the redshirts on Peprah and Harper, but if your juniors and seniors can't do the job, I would prefer to play the freshmen. And for heaven's sake, play aggressively if you are going to likely get beat anyway. Our secondary is palying the old Bend but Break.

3. Our offense scored 36 points yesterday, against one of the 3 best defenses in the SEC. That should have been enough to win. That it wasn't was a reflection NOT of the offense or the playcalling, but of the defensive ineptitude cited above. 36 points and 516 yards of offense, balanced well between run and pass, with 39 minutes of possession time, should win every time. I had thought the defense would carry us, but they can't carry anyhting at this point. I hope they can be improved, or yesterday's result will happen again this year.

4. Without naming names, other than point #2 about the secondary, our recruiting needs to fill our glaring weaknesses are: #1-DB, #2-running backs, #3-defensive linemen. We'll also need WRs, because we have some good ones leaving.

5. The depth that the previous staff has sunk the program should by now be coming home to some of you. They taught nothing, from fundamentals to discipline. They recruited players based apparently on reputation and recruiting rankings, and not on actual talent, coachability, intelligence, or character. And they cut corners, so that now when we need to be able to bring in players who can help us, we are fixing to be hamstrung with scholarship losses.

6. A lot of times, I read people's posts saying, "We are Alabama, and this just doesn't happen to US." Here is a reality check if you think that way. At the present time, we are NOT Alabama. We are a shell of what we used to be. Not even an imbecile like Bill Curry could have sunk our program to this depth. It took one of our own, imbued with a sense of arrogance that "We are Alabama" would be enough to sink us to where we are. It took a lot of hard work, sacrifice, and dedication by players and coaches to put this program in the place where it was nationally. Coach Fran and his staff have come in and begun the work, knowing of the coming NCAA penalties, knowing of the problems of the previous staff, seeing the out-of-shape, dis-spirited team they inherited. And still they have come, and their work has put us in a position to win games like yesterday's. As they instill their system and recruit men of character to play here, we will win these types of games again. I expect we will win between 6 and 8 games this year, which is a 100% to 167% improvement over last year. To expect much more from this team and these coaches given the REALITY of the situation is ridiculous.

This is MY Alabama football team, win or lose. It will be a better thing for us all if we all make it so. The past is the past, and it WAS glorious. But it is GONE. The present is difficult, but the future looks pretty good, if we stay the course we are now on.