Morning Kickoff: Crimson Tide News 1/25


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

Buckeye corner who covered Amari Cooper calls him ‘probably the most explosive receiver I’ve seen’

"The now-former Buckeye was tasked with stopping Alabama’s Heisman Trophy finalist Amari Cooper in the inaugural College Football Playoff semifinal. Looking back on it, the Grant said he “did fine.”In an interview at this week’s Senior Bowl festivities, Grant graded himself with a “B” for his efforts in the 42-35 Ohio State win. Cooper managed 71 receiving yards on nine catches and two touchdowns. Grant, who will miss Saturday’s Senior Bowl game with a hand injury, came away impressed with Cooper’s ability.“He’s probably the most explosive receiver I’ve seen in college besides Sammy Watkins,” Grant said. “Great ball catcher, great speed. … He gets out of his breaks quick, he snaps his head around. He’s a great player.”"

I probably could have told him that before the Sugar Bowl but then again, I would probably just would have been accused of being a bit bias.

Alabama expected to name recruiting ace Tosh Lupoi linebackers coach

"Alabama defensive analyst Tosh Lupoi is expected to be promoted to the Crimson Tide’s outside linebackers coach, according to a source.Lupoi, 33, is considered one of the nation’s top recruiters. His promotion would allow Alabama coach Nick Saban to tap further into Lupoi’s strong West Coast connections. Lupoi has already been recruiting off-campus for the Crimson Tide recently.Those new duties came earlier this month after the departures of former inside linebackers coach Kevin Steele (LSU defensive coordinator) and outside linebackers coach Lance Thompson (Auburn linebackers coach).Lupoi came to Tuscaloosa last spring after the NCAA announced it would not take action regarding allegations that he paid $4,500 for tutoring and online classes for a recruit while an assistant at Washington. Lupoi was defensive line coach for the Huskies from 2012-13 under then-Washington coach Steve Sarkisian."

This will be a great hire. Lupoi was a beast on the recruiting trail. In this article, one SEC staffer already was taking notice of the changes in the Tide’s recruiting with Lupoi just being an analyst on staff.

Cooper’s tip-in lifts Alabama past Auburn, 57-55

"Rodney Cooper grabbed the rebound off of Levi Randolph’s jumper and laid it in with 5.8 seconds left to give Alabama a hotly contested 57-55 win over Auburn Saturday night in the 150th meeting between the two in-state rivals.Randolph gave the Crimson Tide the lead three times in the final 2:13, including a 55-53 advantage with :44 left. K.T. Harrell hit a pair of free throws two seconds later to make it 55-55.After an Alabama time out, Randolph took an open from the free throw line extended, but the errant shot bounced high off the iron and Cooper, looped around an Auburn block to knock down the game winner.”Our assistant coaches tell me to crash the glass,” Cooper said. ”I just took the ball (and put it in).”"

Here is CBS’ recap of the win against Auburn last night. Be sure to check out ours as well on

PHOTOS: Alabama receives Iron Bowl trophy

"Saturday evening, at halftime of the Alabama-Auburn basketball game, the Crimson Tide football received the ODK Foy Sportsmanship Trophy for winning the 2014 Iron Bowl. The ceremony was held at half court inside Coleman Coliseum. The Auburn SGA president presented the trophy to Alabama head coach Nick Saban and the Crimson Tide players, while also singing the Alabama fight song."

You know you want to check out the photos of the football team receiving the Iron Bowl trophy. It’s back home.

School Record by Amankwah in Men’s 800; Burchell’s Impressive 60 Debut Lead Alabama

"University of Alabama junior Alex Amankwah broke the school record in the men’s 800 meters while running the fastest time by a collegian this season, and defending NCAA champion Remona Burchell impressed while winning the 60-meter dash in her 2015 debut to lead the Crimson Tide on a hugely successful Saturday at the Vanderbilt Indoor Invitational.Amankwah broke an 11-year-old Crimson Tide record set in 2004 by Peter Etoot in dominating the field in the men’s 800, crossing the line in 1 minute, 46.86 seconds, .04 faster than Etoot’s previous standard of 1:46.90. Burchell twice broke the facility record in the women’s 60, running two of the 10 fastest times in Alabama history with a 7.28 in the preliminary heats and a winning 7.25 in the final, a time that ranks sixth in Alabama history.Crimson Tide athletes compile four event victories (two men’s and two women’s) while producing eight performances (five women’s, three men’s) that rank in the school’s all-time top 10 in six events (four women’s. two men’s) on an impressive day by the Alabama at the Vanderbilt Multipurpose Facility. Alabama picked up individual victories in the women’s 60-meter dash, the women’s 400 meters, the men’s 60-meter hurdles, and the men’s 800 meters."

Women’s Tennis Kicks Off 2015 Spring Season with Decisive 4-0 Victory

"The seventh-ranked Alabama Crimson Tide defeated the Syracuse Orange by a final score of 4-0 in the opening match of the ITA Kick-Off Weekend tournament on Saturday afternoon inside the Roberta Alison Baumgardner Tennis Facility. With the win the Crimson Tide will advance and play the winner of today’s second match between Princeton and Virginia Tech in Sunday’s championship match beginning at 2 p.m. CT.Alabama jumped out to an early 1-0 lead by claiming the doubles point, as the combination of Luicelena Perez and Natalia Maynetto defeated Syracuse’s Nicole Mitchell and Olivia Messineo, 6-0, followed by an Erin Routliffe/Maya Jansen 6-2 victory over Amanda Rodgers and Rhiann Newborn. The Crimson Tide pairing of Danielle Spielmann and Emily Zabor were leading Valeria Salazar and Komal Safdar 4-3 when the point was clinched."

Men’s Tennis Drops ITA Kick-Off Weekend Consolation Match to Oregon, 4-0

"The Crimson Tide men’s tennis team fell to Oregon, 4-0, on Saturday in the consolation final of ITA Kick-Off Weekend at the Cone-Kenfield Tennis Center on the campus of the University of North Carolina. With the loss, Alabama moves to 2-2 on the season.The Ducks earned their first point of the match after close doubles contests where they would eventually come out on top on courts one and two. Daan Maasland and Daniel Sardu got the winning started for Oregon as they posted a 6-3 score over the Tide’s Sean Donohue and Stuart Kenyon on court two. The remaining two matches went back and forth, however the Ducks’ Jayson Amos and Kevin Farin would edge out Becker O’Shaughnessey and Korey Lovett, 7-5, on court one to secure the point. The matchup on court three was tied 5-5 before it was called."

Women’s Basketball Welcomes Vanderbilt on Sunday

"The women’s basketball team (12-9, 1-5 SEC) returns to Foster Auditorium on Sunday to host the Vanderbilt Commodores (11-8, 2-4 SEC) in a Sunday matinee game that will tip off at Noon and air on Fox Sports South."