The annual pre-signing day exodus has begun.
ArDarius Stewart headlines the first batch of departures destined for the NFL, per AL.com. The junior wide receiver leaves after something of a breakout season that saw him recognized as much for his non-pass catching skills — blocking, running out of the backfield and even passing — as his remarkable catches. He caught Jalen Hurts’ first career touchdown this season and scored crucial touchdowns against Auburn in the last. He won’t draw the hype of Calvin Ridley, but close film study should increase his stock, and its easy to see why some old-school NFL coaches might like him. At any rate, he leaves Alabama with a championship ring, and a degree, with little left to prove.
He’s joined by Derrick Gore, who announced his intention to transfer after two years at Alabama. Gore’s story is more one of unrealized potential. Gore appeared occasionally as Alabama’s fourth-string running back, mostly on mop up duty in blowouts. He came to Alabama as a well-recruited walk-on, spurning several Division I offers to walk on at Alabama. His star turn came on special teams in the SEC Championship Game on a punt block. He leaves with the high opinion of his players and coaches, and two years of eligibility.
— BamaVine (@BamaVine) December 3, 2016
- Alabama is working on moving on.
- The coaching staff does that by turning its attention to recruiting.
- Here’s how that’s shaping up.
- Juniors and redshirt sophomores will be thinking about the NFL Draft. Here’s where they grade out, according to one analyst.
- Roll Bama Roll is looking at the future of Alabama’s historic defense.
- Kevin Scarbinsky: Auburn rolled Toomer’s Corner? That’s just sad.
- Rainer Sabin’s top surprise from the game: Alabama lost.
- A-Day is set for April 22.
- The very beefy ref from the game spoke to the Dan Patrick show.
- SEC Country’s Oliver Connolly breaks down the film from the national championship.
- Jalen Hurts grades out at a B after his passing game was slightly exposed.
Catch them at Coleman?
The Alabama women’s basketball team moved back into Coleman Coliseum for all games this season, leaving their home in Foster Auditorium for good, theoretically. Competitively, this has paid off well for Alabama. The Crimson Tide is undefeated at home en route to a 14-2 start to the season, the best in nearly two decades. With a narrow loss to Georgetown and its only sizable loss to No. 6 South Carolina, Kristy Curry’s side is on the verge of a breakthrough season for a long-suffering program.
Which makes the cavernous expanse of Coleman that greets them every game even more troubling. Through 11 games in the 15,000-seater, Alabama is averaging just more than 2,400 fans per game, below its average attendance from last season. It’s also 1,400 fewer seats than Foster Auditorium’s capacity. The first game of the season, which has been a doubleheader with the men’s team in Coleman for the past several years, drew 7,000 fans. Since then, one game has drawn more than Foster’s capacity — a win against Georgia State on Dec. 15 that drew 4,000.
When the team made the move to Coleman, Curry praised its potential as a recruiting boost, partially because of Foster’s continued use as a separate practice facility. But when the team is playing between crowds roughly one-sixth — and as low as one-thirtieth — the size of the arena’s capacity, it can’t be impressive. Alabama fans have a record of supporting its women’s teams in numbers — not least because they’re competitive in gymnastics and softball every year. It’d be a shame if the best Alabama women’s basketball team in years went unseen in the second-largest arena in the state.
The team begins a three-game home stand with Kentucky on Thursday night at 8 ET
Built by Bama
— Memphis Grizzlies (@memgrizz) January 12, 2017
- JaMychal Green posted 4 points on 2-of-10 shooting and 10 rebounds as his Memphis Grizzlies lost to the Oklahoma City Thunder on Wednesday.
- Four possible trade destinations for AJ McCarron.
- Former Alabama closer Thomas Burrows is now an Atlanta Brave. Kind of.
- And below, the physics behind Justin Thomas’s booming drives.
He goes 5-10, 145.
And crushes it.
Justin Thomas' power explained by a physicist. pic.twitter.com/cCyubMBnEK
— PGA TOUR (@PGATOUR) January 12, 2017