September 13, 2015; Oakland, CA, USA; Family of former Oakland Raiders quarterback Ken Stabler lit the Al Davis eternal flame before the game against the Cincinnati Bengals at O.co Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports
#3 Kenny Stabler
Kenny “The Snake” Stabler was Alabama Football royalty. The Snake was the kind of football player that Alabama fans love; he was tough, talented, and cocky.
Kenny Stabler was born in Foley, Alabama on December 25, 1945… so when you open your presents on Christmas morning think of the Snake.
Stabler was an extremely talented all-around athlete in high school and turned down contract offers from the Houston Astros and the New York Yankees to go to Alabama and play football.
Kenny Stabler came to Alabama in 1964, but couldn’t play because at the time the NCAA forbid freshmen from playing. (It’s good to see that the NCAA has always been ridiculous.) Stabler didn’t play much in 1965 either as he was backing up Steve Sloan. This means that Bear Bryant had Joe Namath, Steve Sloan, and Kenny Stabler. Wow.
Stabler’s first season as the Crimson Tide’s quarterback ended with an 11-0 record and a blowout of Nebraska in the Sugar Bowl.
Stabler’s Senior season didn’t go as well with him ending up kicked off the team for a while for cutting class. That year, however, did contain what would become known as “The Run in the Mud”. While trailing Auburn in an Iron Bowl Stabler ran for 53 yards to win the game. Bear Bryant said he could watch that play forever.
Stabler played in the NFL for the Oakland Raiders from 1970-1979 and won Super Bowl XI. Stabler went to four NFL Pro Bowls as well.
Kenny Stabler joined Eli Gold as the color commentator for Alabama football on the radio until 2008. Listening to the Snake became a favorite pastime of Alabama Football fans during the 2000s.
Kenny Stabler also wrote a children’s book called “Roll Tide!”.
Sadly the Snake passed away this year, he was 70 years old.
Next: #2 Joe Namath