Morning Kickoff: Crimson Tide News 11/23


Get your day started with the Morning Kickoff. All your Crimson Tide news in one place.

No. 1 Alabama cruises past FCS-level Western Carolina

"Banged up in two straight wins over SEC West bruisers, Alabama (No. 1 CFP, No. 2 AP) took a while to overwhelm a lower-division team that wasn’t supposed to be able to put up much of a fight.Derrick Henry rushed for two touchdowns and scored a third on a catch, all in the first half, to lead the Crimson Tide to a 48-14 victory over Western Carolina on Saturday.The Tide (10-1) recovered from a slow start to score the final 31 points in its first game since rising to No. 1 in the College Football Playoff rankings. FCS member Western Carolina (7-5) scored a touchdown on the opening drive and trailed just 17-14 early in the second quarter."

That’s the last one out of the way until the big rivalry game this weekend. The Iron Bowl. Families and friendships get put aside for the big one in the state. Should be a big one.

Alabama football: Saban credits leadership for helping Tide’s winning ways

"Regardless of how the rest of the season plays out for Alabama, one thing is certain — leadership hasn’t been a problem in the eyes of Crimson Tide coach Nick Saban.In fact, leadership and team chemistry are a big part of why this Alabama team is ranked No. 1 in the College Football Playoff rankings to this point, according to Saban.From Saban to the players who come to the media room to speak with reporters, they all say the team enjoys playing for each other more than anything. And it all starts with the Tide’s seniors, who only have two more opportunities to play in front of the home fans at Bryant-Denny Stadium. In addition to Saturday’s game against Western Carolina, the Tide (9-1) will host Auburn on Nov. 29."

This was posted just before the Western Carolina game but it’s still true. If national titles were given for leadership, this group of guys would be the unanimous pick. Just keep doing your thing, boys.

Alabama’s Reggie Ragland shifts focus to Iron Bowl, says ‘this game is circled on our calendar 365’

"Alabama linebacker Reggie Ragland wasn’t talking much about the game he just played during his couple of minutes with reporters Saturday.The Madison native is seven days away from starting in his first Iron Bowl, and there was little reason left to hold back his excitement.“This game is circled on our calendar 365,” Ragland said. “It’s time to come out and watch film and do the things we’ve got to do to prepare for it.”"

Looks like the players are ready for it. Did you expect anything else? Let’s hope for a good week of practice and let’s welcome the Tigers to Tuscaloosa in the proper way and send them home with a loss.

Former Alabama RB Dee Hart scores 6 TDs as Colorado State routs New Mexico

"Former Alabama running back Dee Hart had a day to remember for Colorado State on Saturday.Hart, a junior, scored six touchdowns as the Rams routed New Mexico 58-20 to improve to 10-1. The Orlando, Fla., native ran for 230 yards and five touchdowns and also caught a touchdown.Hart’s scoring runs covered 2, 6, 76, 4 and 55 yards. His touchdown catch went for 20 yards."

It’s absolutely awesome to see Dee Hart as well as Coach McElwain doing so well. Hope they keep it going.

Swimming and Diving Finishes Strong at H2Okies Invitational

"For the second day in a row, Alabama swimming and diving’s Emma Saunders picked up a pair of individual wins and broke a school record, closing out the final day of the H2Okies Invitational on a fast note.“It was another good day for us,” UA head coach Dennis Pursley said. “We certainly had some fast swims both individually and in the relays, as well as another school record from Emma Saunders. We still have room to grow and improve, but we made strides as a team this weekend.”"

Balanced Offense Leads Crimson Tide to 72-58 Victory over Georgetown

"Ten of Alabama’s 11 players contributed to the scoring in its 72-58 win against Georgetown in game two of the Hall of Fame Women’s Challenge at Allen Fieldhouse. With the victory, the Crimson Tide moves to 3-2 on the season, while the loss drops the Hoyas to 2-3 overall.“I am so proud of this team,” said Alabama head coach Kristy Curry. “It says a lot about our competitive spirit to get these two wins in two days. It is important as we grow this team that we continue to have consistency and that we are ready to come out and play back-to-back-to-back games.”"