Randy Smith: Alabama Football: A Fistful Of Bling

Thursday, July 11, 2013 - by Randy Smith
Randy Smith
Randy Smith

Nick Saban's Crimson Tide is picked to be the National Champion once again in college football. If they accomplish this enormous task, it would place this group of "Red Elephants" at the top of the list for the game's all-time best dynasty. Going into the 2013 season, only two other programs have won three titles in a four year stretch. (Notre Dame in 1946, 1947, 1949, and  Nebraska in 1994, 1995, and 1997) 'Bama has won titles in 2009, 2011, and 2012 and when you throw in the rings they get from winning SEC titles and SEC Divisional titles, Tide players could be called, "The Masters of Bling."

The biggest question of all seems to be, "How does the Alabama dynasty come to work each day, still enthused, and still focused on winning?" Offensive lineman Cyrus Kouandijo says, "Football is an everyday thing. It's like a tree. Each day you either grow or you die. Every day is supposed to be a struggle, a struggle to get better. Some days I go out there and I really don't want to do it, but I know I'm going to die out there or get better."

The word, "die" may be a bit far fetched, though some detractors will tell you it fits a Nick Saban program. Believe it or not, there are already comparisons between Saban and the godly "Bear" Bryant in Tuscaloosa. Saban is a mere two National Championships away from tying Coach Bryant's total of six. When or if he reaches that total, then the discussions can begin regarding the greatest coach of all-time. No program has ever won three titles in a row, but if Alabama does the expected in 2013, that greatest coach discussion might start a bit early.

Standing in "Bama's way is perhaps the toughest SEC ever. The league is also going after an eighth straight National Crown and while LSU may be a bit down this season, Texas A&M, Georgia, South Carolina, and Florida will provide the Tide's biggest competition. I remember back in 1992, when the SEC split into two divisions and started playing a league championship game, a well intentioned sportswriter made this statement; "It will be a long time before the SEC wins another national title. The league is too tough, too competitive. They'll just beat up on each other and play themselves out of the title picture." Alabama won the National Title in 1992, and since that season, an SEC team has won eleven of the twenty championships.

I am not ready to make a prediction one way or the other regarding Alabama's chances of winning the 2013 National Championship. Besides, it really doesn't matter a hill of beans who I think will win it all. To go even further, it doesn't matter a hill of beans who predicts who will win the title. It's just topics for conversation, that's all. But since the season is still more than six weeks away, it's fun to talk about.

There are also some other hot topics in the SEC for this fall; What will Johnny Manziel do for an encore at Texas A&M after being the first freshman to win a Heisman Trophy, will South Carolina's Jadeveon Clowney be the first defensive player to win a Heisman since Charles Woodson beat out Peyton Manning in 1997, will Butch Jones make progress returning the Tennessee Volunteers to their spot among the SEC elite programs in 2013, will Georgia or South Carolina finally be able to snap the SEC West's stranglehold on the league championship event, ( five in a row)? The answers to those questions and many more are coming in just a few weeks. Get ready.......

rsmithsports@comcast.net

---

Randy Smith has been covering sports in Tennessee for the last 43 years. After leaving WRCB-TV in 2009, he has continued his broadcasting career as a free-lance play-by-play announcer. He is also an author and is a media concepts teacher at Brainerd High School in Chattanooga. He is also the Head Softball Coach at Brainerd. Randy Smith's career has included a 17-year stint as scoreboard host and pre-game talk show host on the widely regarded "Vol Network". He has also done play by play of more than 500 college football, basketball, baseball and softball games on ESPN, ESPN2, Fox Sports, CSS and Tennessee Pay Per View telecasts. He was selected as "Tennessee's Best Sports Talk Show Host" in 1998 by the Associated Press. He has won other major awards including, "Best Sports Story" in Tennessee and his "Friday Night Football" shows on WRCB-TV twice won "Best Sports Talk Show In Tennessee" awards. He has also been the host of "Inside Lee University Basketball" on CSS for the past 11 years. He was the first television broadcaster to ever be elected to the "Greater Chattanooga Area Sports Hall of Fame", in 2003. Randy and his wife, Shelia, reside in Hixson. They have two married children (Christi and Chris Perry; Davey and Alison Smith). They also have three grandchildren (Coleman, Boone, and DellaMae).



PHOTOS: Tyner Defeats Rockwood, 16-10

Bulldogs Face In-State Rival Georgia Tech Saturday At Noon

For the past four seasons, going up against Georgia Tech in the final regular-season game of the year has meant a date with quarterback Justin Thomas for the Georgia defense. But this time around, the Bulldogs will be seeing a new face on the other side of the line of scrimmage: junior Taquon Marshall. In studying this season’s tape, Smart still found himself surprised by ... (click for more)

Man, 21, Shot While Walking Along E. 19th Street

A 21-year-old man was shot Friday afternoon as he waked along E. 19th Street. The victim was identified as Quincy McConnell. Chattanooga Police officers responded to a local hospital on a report of a gunshot victim arriving for treatment. The victim arrived at the hospital via personal vehicle. He suffered a non-life threatening injury. The victim said he was ... (click for more)

$100,000 Powereball Winner In Greeneville

A Tennessee Lottery Powerball player in Greeneville woke up Thanksgiving morning a $100,000 winner.  The as-yet-unknown player matched 4 of 5 white balls drawn plus the Powerball in the Wednesday night drawing, which has a base prize of $50,000. Since he or she added the Power Play option for a dollar, the prize was multiplied by the Power Play number drawn, which was ... (click for more)

Stormwater Fiasco And East Ridge Camping

When did the Chattanooga City Council get replaced by members of the East Ridge City Council? I don't recall a time in Chattanooga where they've voted to shoot the city in the foot more than they have lately.  If this goes through despite the environmental impact warnings and then Camp Jordan has increased flooding after spending millions on sports ball fields, ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Saturday Funnies

The best story this Thanksgiving comes from the New Jersey Turnpike where a very attractive young woman ran out of gas last month. Kate McClure had little cash on her as she began to walk towards the closest gas station in the pitch-black dark. But she didn’t get far before a homeless man, his beard ragged and clothes filthy, told her this was a bad place for her to be.  ... (click for more)