Is Still

Paul's Twitter Feed

Roll Tide Roll
Dedicated to University of Alabama Football and the Spirit of BEAR BRYANT. Alabama Football is BACK Roll Tide!!!!

U of A Disclaimer
The views, opinions, and conclusions expressed in this page are those of the author or organization and not necessarily those of The University of Alabama or its officers and trustees. The content of this page has not been reviewed or approved by the University of Alabama, and the author or organization is solely responsible for its content."

Click Here

T-Town Weather

Auburn Grades
Posted by Woody Woodruff on Tuesday December 03 2013 @ 10:19AM CST
[ The Commissioner's Blog ]
It is the little things that matter. That was the point that Benjamin Franklin was making with his poem about how a missing horseshoe nail led to the loss of a kingdom. Great enterprises can come to naught because of the neglect of seemingly small details.

The same is true in sports. The biggest of big games can turn on players and coaches paying attention to the little things. Little things; like finishing a catch that would be a first down, false starting on a place kick, committing personal fouls, avoiding blocked kicks, playing your assignment.....or not.

At one time or another, Alabama neglected all of these little things in the 2013 Iron Bowl. Because of little things, Alabama failed to convert a 4th and one in the Auburn red-zone, nullified what would have been a first and goal, allowed Auburn runners to gash the defense, and left receivers open for easy touchdowns.

Coach Saban always says that results follow how well the team performs. That is why The Process focuses on performance. Playing to a standard. If each player plays to a standard, then the team as a whole plays to a standard. Results will take care of themselves.

By this measure, the final score of Auburn 34 - Alabama 28, was the justly deserved result of how Alabama played on Saturday. Luck was not a factor. Neither was officiating. Alabama deserved to lose the game because of the way it played.

Even so, with just over 10 minutes to play in the game it looked as if Alabama had finally found itself. Throwing out of his own end zone, AJ completed the longest touchdown pass in all of Tide history to Amari Cooper. But neglect of little things took its inexorable toll.

On the ensuing possession, the Defense stuffed the Auburn rushing game and forced a turnover on downs at the Auburn 35. TJ Yeldon picked up a first down on a 13 yard run, but the following three plays earned 9 yards and on 4th and 1 from the Auburn 13, a missed block on the line of scrimmage allowed Auburn's Carl Lawson to stop Yeldon for no gain.

Again, the Defense responded. Nick Marshall was sacked for 9 yards on first down. Two incomplete passes later Auburn's outstanding punter, Stephen Clark, kicked to Christion Jones who returned the ball to Auburn's 25. But a run run by TJ Yeldon for what would have been a first and goal at the AU 5 was nullified by a holding call, and a field goal try was blocked.

A late hit gave Auburn 15 extra yards of field position and a coverage mistake by Cyrus Jones gave a wide open receiver an unchallenged catch-and-run for a game-tying touchdown with :32 seconds to play.

The game's final play, a 100+ yard return of a missed 57 yard field goal attempt, is the sort of highlight that will be endlessly replayed. The Auburn football "tradition" has now been expanded to two national championships, two blocked punts, a Hail-Mary pass and a kick return. But Tide fans know deep down that when busted coverage allowed Auburn to tie the game, a Tiger victory was inevitable. Does anyone really think that Alabama could have won in overtime? I don't.

The stack of too many neglected little things had, by game's end, become an insurmountable psychological obstacle. By that time, Alabama had made enough little mistakes to lose three games. So it is somewhat fitting that in a metaphorical way it did. Not only did we lose the Iron Bowl, we also lost the SEC and BCS Championship Games by foreclosing the chance to even play in them. Unlike the 2011 and 2012 seasons, no amount of BCS bracket-busting can put a one loss Alabama into the title game. On Saturday night, down in the Village, the 2013 Crimson Tide was left wanting too many horseshoe nails.

Here's how I grade the game:

Offense: F The offense achieved 19 first downs on 495 yards of total offense; number which in most other contexts would be indicative of victory. But here again the little things plagued the Tide. Alabama converted only 4 of 13 third downs; only 1 in the first half. Although TJ Yeldon gained 141 net yards rushing, he was called upon 26 times compared to Kenyan Drake's 33 yards on 4 carries, and was the Tide's only consistent running threat. At this writing, I do not know whether Drake was injured during the game. If not, his absence from the game is baffling (see coaching grade to follow).

AJ completed 17 of 29 pass attempts for 277 yards and 3 TDs. Amari Cooper (6 catches for 178 yards) was his favorite target, and their 4th quarter throw and catch from inside the Tide 1 yard line will set a mark that might one day be equalled but never topped. Kevin Norwood caught 3 passes for 45 yards and a TD. His best catch of the game was a deflected pass that he snagged and turned up field for a key first down.

The Offense put together only 5 drives that gained more than 40 yards [49, 67, 56, 83, 99] which netted three TDs and two missed field goals [another one of those little things].

Defense: F Some of the defensive statistics are impressive: 7 tackles for lost yards, 2 forced fumbles, 3 sacks, 4 hurries, a recovered fumble. Others, however, indicate a lack of consistency and failure of attention to little things: AU earned 22 first downs, rushed for 296 yards, had two backs rush for more than 100 yards each, and converted 8 of 15 third downs.

CJ Mosley was the leading tackler with 14 total stops [10 solo]. Trey DePriest recorded 11 tackles and Landon Collins was credited with 9.

Special Teams:

Punting: C Cody Mandel dropped the snap on his first punt attempt. The ball was partially blocked. For this reason, his otherwise excellent average of 51 yards per kick is subject to a material downgrade. Christion Jones had an excellent 19 yard punt return-only the fifth return allowed by Auburn's punting unit all season.

Kickoffs: B Cade Foster averaged 63.6 gross yards per kick and the coverage unit contained Auburn's big-play return game achieving a net average of 40.6 per kick.

Place Kicking: F Alabama missed 3 and had a 4th attempt blocked. This was the worst display of place kicking by an Alabama team since the 5 missed kicks against Arkansas when Mike Shula was the head coach. It surpassed the dreadful performance in the 2011 LSU game.

Coaching: F The players were not ready for what Auburn did, and what Auburn did was no different than what Auburn has been doing offensively all year. The number of players listed in the participation report is surprisingly small [47] and Alabama was penalized 6 times for 45 yards. Auburn was only flagged 3 times for 21. The decision to go for the first down on 4th and 1 is debatable, but certainly within the realm of reason. The decision to send Cade Foster out to attempt his third FG attempt [second from 44 yards] is less so. Although Saban's post-game remarks have been criticized in some circles, I find no fault in them. He knows the psyche of his team better than anyone and I will not second guess him here.

I wrote in last week's edition that you could close the book on the 2013 graduating class and they would have a record of achievement hard to match. The same thing is true today. There is only one more chapter for AJ, CJ, Kevin,Kenny, Cade, Cody, Anthony, Deion, Ed, Tana, John, Nick and Kellen to write. We won't know for another week the setting for that final chapter. Some observers predict that a one-loss Alabama is likely to receive an at-large bid to play in the Orange Bowl. There are far worse ways to end a championship run; just ask the Auburn seniors about that.

Right now, however, the pain of losing to Auburn, and the concurrent loss of the opportunity to make history, is too sharp. The knowledge that the team and its coaches allowed victory and history to slip through their fingers like so much beach sand, is hard to absorb. Some people, have taken to social media-that scourge or modern life-to savage individual players, especially Foster. Shame is too little to wish upon such people, but banishment is impossible and shunning is impractical.

For the last several years, I have been getting a new hat at the beginning of every season. Most years, it has been one of those white hats with the Shirt Shop elephant logo embroidered on the front. This year, I was given a red one embroidered with the outline of the State of Alabama and the number 15 in the middle. It is still in good shape, and there will be no need to replace it come August in order to update the number.

Alabama's journey on the Road To 16 just got at least 12 months longer. I don't know about you, but I would not want to take that trip with anyone in the driver's seat other than Nick Saban. And that, my friends, is a rather big thing.

The Grades will return after the bowl game. In a week or so, look for The Commissioners MVP's for 2013.

Roll Tide y'all.

The Commissioner

< Shane Writes from Beyond | Almost Shane After the Game >

More Links
  • Printer friendly version
  • Share this story

  • Join the Tide
    Put your e-mail for weekly updates on the Tide :

    To unsubscribe from list, click here and send an empty email.

    Weekly Cartoons
    Past Bad AL Cartoons

    Last 5 Comments
  • Arkansas Grades (Bama Mike)
  • Shane and the Crimson Tide (tim)
  • Shane and the Crimson Tide (DAYNA CORN OVERBY)
  • One Last One from Shane (BamaGrad77)
  • GUS MALZAHN . . . The Real Deal or a Real Dill (tim)

  • Tide Football - Roll Tide Roll - Beat Missouri - University of Alabama Football - Unofficial site for Tide News
    Copywrite 2011

    Site Map
    Weekly Cartoon , Bad Al 2013j , 2006 Schedule , 2007 Season , 2008 Schedule , 2009 Depth Chart , 2009 Iron Bowl Videos , 2009 Recruiting News , 2009 Schedule , 2009 SEC Championship Videos , 2010 Schedule , 2011 Bama Videos , 2011 Iron Bowl , 2011 Recruiting Class , 2011 Recruiting News , 2011 Roster , 2011 Schedule , 2012 Alabama Football Schedule , 2012 Depth Chart , 2012 Recruits , 2013 Alabama January Enrollees , 2013 Recruits , 2013 Schedule , 2008 Bama News , 2008 Depth Chart , Bama Rolls Over Georgia , Bama Routs Arkansas , Bama Routs Clemson , Bama Stuff , Bama Videos , Bama Vs Auburn , Bama Vs Kentucky , Bama Vs Ol Miss , Bama Vs Tulane , Iron Bowl Seasons , Pounding Gators in the Dome , Rocky Bottoms , Scaling The Mountain 2 , Scaling The Mountain 3 , Scaling The Mountain , THE IRON BOWL , Tuscaloosa Weather , Vegas Odds , Wallpaper2 , Wallpaper3 , Wallpaper , A-Day 2012-1 , A-Day 2012-2 , A-Day 2012-3 , A.J. McCarron for Heisman , ALMOST PERFECTLY PROCESSED BULLDOG , Auburn Jokes , Bad Al 2013 , Bad Al 2013 Game by Game , Bad Al 2013a , Bad Al 2013b , Bad Al 2013c , Bad Al 2013d , Bad Al 2013e , Bad Al 2013f , Bad Al 2013g , Bad Al 2013h , Bad Al 2013i , Bad Al 2013j , Bad Al 2013k , Bad Al 2013l , Bad Al 2013m , Bad Al 2013n , Bad Al 2013o , Bad Al After Arkansas , Bad Al After Clemson , Bad Al After Georgia , Bad Al After Houston Game , Bad Al After Kentucky , Bad Al After LSU Game , Bad Al After Missisippi State Game , Bad Al After Monroe Game , Bad Al After Ol Miss Game , Bad Al After the Regular Season , Bad Al After Tulane , Bad Al After Utah , Bad Al Before Arkansas , Bad Al Before LS Who? , Bad Al Before LSU , Bad Al Before the Bowl , Bad Al Coming Back From Rocky Bottoms , Bad Al Going To Rocky Bottoms , Bad Al Juicing Oranges , Bad Al Poetry , Bad Al Sizing up The Gators , Bad Al Takes a Break , Bad All After Florida , Bad All After The Tennessee Massacre , Bad Al's 2009 Menu , Bad Al's Gallery , Badly Beaten Honey Badger Needs Help Getting Hom , Bama Beach , BAMA NEWS , Bama Quotes , Bama vs Florida , Bama vs LSU , Bama's Seasons , Bar-B-Q Bad Al Style , Bobby E Lowder , Brent Calloway , Bryant Denny Stadium Seating Chart , Bye Week , Camboozled , Championship Video , Coach Al , Coach Saban vs The Rest , Coach Saban's 2nd Favorite Charity , Coaches 2011 , Come On Coach 2 , Come on Nick , Division I streamlines rulebook , Dog Stomp Practice , Facts About 2008 Recruits , Famous Alabama Quotes , Finebaum Hat Trick , Finebaum The Coach , Fishing , Forum , Fresh Squeezed , Gamecock Stomp , Gamecock Stomp 2 , High Tide Mike , Independence Bowl , Ingram Won The Heisman , Iron Bowl History , Iron Bowl Results , It's a Good Thing That Elephants Don't Fly , Jesse Williams Video , Laying Stepping Stones 1 , Laying Stepping Stones 2 , LSU Digs Deep one Defense , LSU Slide Show 1 , LSU Slide Show 2 , LSU Videos , LSU2013 , Mad Hatter Turns the Table , New Bear Images , Nick Saban Being Encouraging , Nick Saban's Resume , Nittany Lions , Northern, Southern, and Tide Football , Ole Miss Defensive Seating , Oranges not Properly Processed , Past Bad AL Cartoons , Paul W. Bryant Jr. , Pound the Gators , Process Resistant Tiger , Processing Beef Jerky , PROPERLY PROCESSED TIGER , Quotes about Bama , Quotes About Nick Saban , Rashad's Night Out , Rocky Bottoms , Roster 2010 , Saban Quotes , Saban Video , Shane from Centerpoint , Shane Learns the Truth About the Help Bama Butto , Shane's Guest Book , SIGNING DAY , Slam Cam , Stadium Video , Steping on The Mad Hatter , Stomping The Commodores , The Bear Tells Shane the Rule , The Catch Photo , The Dog House is Ready , The Game That Counts , The Hog Stomp , The Honey Badger makes Bad Al Furious , The Stadium , The Woodshed , The Wrecking Crew , Tiger Ready for Processing , Tornado Slide Show , Tree Hugger Al , TUBBY WATCH! , Warmup Eagles , We Won One , Welcome Nick , What's Mean About Green? , Who's Next , Why we won against Georgia , Will we be able to RV , You Can't Hide Colonel Reb , '11 FL S HaSean Clinton-Dix ,