In the midst of the buzz and anticipation — the rivalry chatter and the strategy talk — Nick Saban took a few minutes to talk about his and his wife’s coffee mugs at home on Thursday night. It was awesome. Happy Friday, Alabama fans. This weekend is about to get crazy.
Here are seven things to know:
- Nick Saban admitted that a former NFL team he worked for stole signs. The Crimson Tide coach says Alabama does not.
- The SEC Country staff had a little fun as we all made our picks for the LSU-Alabama game. Find out who we think wins this epic showdown.
- Food for thought: Saban or Bryant?
- Nick Saban coached his final game against Alabama as the LSU coach 11 years ago.
- USA Today’s Josh Peter put out a report Thursday night that questions if LSU running back Leonard Fournette’s family violated NCAA policy.
- Everyone knows that the key for both teams Saturday will be to stop the opposition’s star running back. But the question is how.
- Ohio State’s Urban Meyer has named a play for field goal returns ‘Bama.’ You probably know why.
Other Alabama news from around the Internet
- Alabama recruited LSU quarterback Brandon Harris to play for the Crimson Tide, but Harris wasn’t sold that Tuscaloosa, Ala., was the place for him. Now at LSU, Harris could be the X-factor in Saturday’s game, AL.com’s John Talty wrote.
- What about LSU’s game might you be overlooking? AL.com’s Michael Casagrande has you covered.
- On the opposing sideline from LSU’s Fournette will stand Alabama’s running backs coach, Burton Burns. Fournette and Burns have a special connection, AL.com’s Joseph Goodman wrote, because they both went to the same Catholic high school in New Orleans.
- Speaking of Fournette, his high school coach’s stepson plays for Alabama now. ‘BamaMag.com’s A.P. Steadham caught up with Fournette’s former coach.
- All week the running backs battle between Fournette and Derrick Henry has been the chatter. Bleacher Report’s Christopher Walsh wrote that Alabama’s defense — not LSU’s — will have the more important task, though, in stopping Fournette.
- Finally what you’ve been waiting for: Saban’s coffee mug comments. AL.com’s Matt Zenitz gave minute-to-minute updates of Saban’s radio show Thursday night.
The best stories around the SEC
- In case you missed it, there was quite a bit of drama within the Georgia program Thursday. A report was published questioning if defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt was going to be fired Thursday. But then UGA coach Mark Richt squashed the rumors with one single tweet.
- One Tennessee commit has no concerns whatsoever about the Vols’ ability to beat South Carolina.
- Texas A&M is ready for Auburn and has an awesome video to prove it.
- Former Vandy quarterback Josh Grady is excited to battle with his previous team when the Gators and Commodores square off this weekend.
- It could be a big day for Grady and the Gators. A win would clinch a berth in the SEC championship game. But as far as the Gators going to the College Football Playoff, a few things will probably have to happen first.