Alabama Football: What if the Tide retired football jersey numbers?

(Photo by Joel Auerbach/Getty Images)
(Photo by Joel Auerbach/Getty Images) /
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There have been so many Alabama football legends over the decades, but no jerseys are retired. What if the Crimson Tide changed that?

When you win 17 national championships in college football, you’re bound to have some historic players. That’s the conundrum Alabama football has had for decades. The Crimson Tide want to have a way to honor these players, but there are simply too many to count. Some get to cement their legacy in a footprint and handprint at Denny Chimes for being a team captain, but not every superstar gets to be a captain. If you win a championship, you get a plaque on the walk of champions, but that’s more of a team achievement. Coaches get statues, but there’s nothing like that for the dozens of players to come through at Alabama.

Outside of a highlight played in the stadium or the occasional return to campus, there’s very little for these athletes to earn individually for their cumulative effort while wearing a crimson jersey. This is the Alabama football way, but there is still a belief that plenty of players deserve to be honored in some way. One possibility is retiring jersey numbers.

Now, I know that Alabama football likely won’t retire a jersey number any time soon. You only get about 100 numbers, and certain positions are required to wear certain numbers. Players are already having to double up on numbers as it is, so there is no way that you can justify retiring more than one or two jersey numbers. However, Alabama basketball retired a jersey this last season, so there is hope.

It’s unlikely to ever happen, but let’s take a look at who the top candidates would be if the Crimson Tide ever decided to retire a jersey number.