AlabamaGameday is now in its second year, and we're very pleased to participate in this ..."/> AlabamaGameday is now in its second year, and we're very pleased to participate in this ..."/> AlabamaGameday is now in its second year, and we're very pleased to participate in this ..."/>

The Crimson & White Roundtable

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AlabamaGameday is now in its second year, and we’re very pleased to participate in this year’s Crimson & White Roundtable, which is hosted on a rotating basis by Tide bloggers. This week’s edition is hosted by our pal, TideDruid. And so, on with the questions:

Will the new offense and Offensive Coordinator be a positive change for John Parker Wilson? If so, how much? If not, what concerns you?
By all accounts, most of last year’s offense remains in place, with some changes and some new names. We can expect to see improvements in JPW’s technique, his throwing motion, and his decision-making. In McElwain’s scheme, JPW won’t have to be a hero; passes to the tight end and short screens will replace heaving the ball 60 yards off his back foot. Overall, expect improvement; just don’t expect miracles.

We’ve all felt the excitement of landing this studly freshman class on signing day, but what expectations should we have once they all land in Tuscaloosa?
Alabama fans with reasonable expectations? C’mon…

While this freshman class is perhaps the best in over a decade at Alabama, keep in mind; they are still freshmen. That said, expect several to start on opening day, and further, expect to see Julio Jones prove he’s ready for the SEC right now. It’ll be another year or two before we’re truly up to strength, but we will from time to time next season, see flashes of what’s to come.

What were your initial thoughts of the somewhat split job of Defensive Coordinator? Have they changed since then, or are they still the same?
Kevin Steele is being groomed for a head coaching job. Adding the title of Associate Head Coach allows Saban to keep him on board, and take advantage of Steele’s talents one more year, while preparing Kirby Smart to take over after Steele’s departure. All told, Alabama’s defense is in good hands, both now and for the future.

In your eyes, who needs to step up most in a position of depth concern?
We will have to solidify the linebacking corps. The Jimmy Johns Project® is not going to be the solution to our depth problems, so we can expect someone to be thrown to the lions early this year.

We’ve all heard the talk of this possibly being Mal Moore’s last season as Athletic Director. What will his legacy be when all is said and done?
Mal’s legacy is a mixed bag. On the negative side of the ledger, he presided over the worst period of Alabama football since the Whitworth era. He was the man in charge during crushing NCAA penalties, a string of coaching hires ranging from misguided to criminally incompetent, and an unprecedented run of success by Auburn.

On the other hand, Moore is a legend at Alabama. Winning championships under Bryant and Stallings as a player and a coach, Moore moved into the AD’s office and became an effective fundraiser for – and promoter of – Alabama athletics. Moore oversaw the beautiful expansion of Bryant-Denny and the fantastic upgrades to the athletic facilities, all of which make Tuscaloosa a desirable destination for recruits.

His crowning achievement, however, is the hiring of Nick Saban. By playing a high-stakes game of chicken with the Board of Trustees, Moore secured the services of the most feared and hardest-working man in the game.

Overall, Mal Moore will be remembered as an Alabama man; one who made his share of mistakes, but who saved his best stuff for the fourth quarter.

Other than Georgia, what non-Alabama SEC team impresses you most?
In all honesty, we give the nod to Mississippi State. Sly Croom has slowly, steadily gotten this team to believe. He’s cut out the cancerous elements, instilled a sense of unity and pride in his team, and is doing more with less than anyone in the league. Will the other Bulldogs compete for the SEC title? Probably not; but even so, we’re impressed.