Alabama Football: Three things that will stay the same under Kalen DeBoer

Florida v Alabama
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Alabama Football is clearly entering a new era under Coach Kalen DeBoer. Included amongst the “new” modes of operation that the program has already begun to adopt are social media usage, NIL promotion, and media availability for assistant coaches. 

Still, I am of the belief that Kalen DeBoer understands the magnitude of the Alabama Football program and the power of its brand and history. While much will change, there is also plenty that will remain the same. 

1. Traditionalism

Coach DeBoer will leave the many traditions of Alabama Football intact. Bama is built on old school, blue-collar principles and DeBoer knows that those values must remain solid. Coach Bryant, Coach Stallings, Coach Saban, and others have kept the program’s culture consistent over several decades, and Coach DeBoer is wise enough to do the same. He will build on the foundation set by his predecessors to keep Bama Football functioning at the highest level.  

Among many other aspects of the Alabama tradition, I don’t expect Coach DeBoer to alter the uniforms. Sure, Bama has experimented in the past, including the use of white helmets at times in the 1960’s, for a game in 1971, and from 1983-1984. Regardless, Alabama’s uniforms have remained largely untouched for the better part of 40 years. They are perhaps the most classic and recognizable unis in all of sports, and should not be trifled with under DeBoer. 

2. Competition & Roster Purging

Coach DeBoer has already made it very clear that competition will be a staple of his program just like it was under Coach Saban.

The best way to build a national title contender in college football is to stack as much talent as possible and allow in-practice competition to determine the depth chart and improve all parties involved. DeBoer has already shown how aggressive he can be in stacking talent, finding early success in the transfer portal and on the recruiting trail.

Along with this method of roster building will come the annual roster purge that Alabama fans had to get used to under Coach Saban. No fan base wants to see former highly-touted recruits or intriguing developmental prospects hit the transfer portal, but that has become the nature of the beast for programs with elite rosters.

Early on, it already seems that Coach DeBoer’s teams at Alabama will likely encounter the same side effects. 

3. Winning

Winning will not go away under Coach DeBoer. Coach Saban set the bar astronomically high, and it would be absurd to expect six more national titles in the next 15 years, but Alabama will not fall by the wayside like many rival fan bases are hoping. 

So far, Coach DeBoer has adopted a perfect blend of the old and the new. He is seamlessly combining the aspects of Coach Saban’s program that are still serviceable with the new age approach that has worked for him at Washington, Fresno State, and numerous other stops.

Even pessimistic Bama fans would have to admit that the transition has gone about as smoothly as one could ask, and the Crimson Tide should continue to find success in this new chapter.