If you believe Kevin Scarbinsky of the Birmingham News everyone in and around the Alabama program, including bloggers, are responsible for the lowly state of Alabama football. Scarbinsky notes that no Alabama players taken in the NFL Draft this past weekend marks the low point of the program instead of the loss this past season to Louisiana Monroe. You can read the article here.
So I decided that the best thing I could do is fess up and take my knocks for the lowly state of the program. I appreciate him bringing to light how tragic this weekend’s events really were. Here I was busy lamenting the Braves lack of middle relief and working on my golf game when all the time I should have been kicking small dogs and children like I did this past November when Alabama got shut out by the state of Louisiana. I’m going to go ahead and call the wife and let her know just how miserable it’s going to be around the house tonight. Might as well go ahead and let the folks at the office know that I’m going on a three-day bender to drown my sorrows as well. Maybe I’ll even take a whole week since it is my fault. Whose going to erect the billboard for this monumental defeat?
First off, this isn’t even news. Everyone should have known that the talent level was way down and didn’t compare to that in the rest of the conference, hence the dismal win-loss record. Didn’t someone mention that there were some telling statistics coming out of the combines? Yeah, that was me. But then again I am just a blogger.
Secondly, who gives a big red crap about draft day. College football isn’t about creating NFL talent. At least it isn’t the primary goal- if your school puts a lot of talent into the league it might be a small feather in your cap at best. Scarbinsky claimed that Mt. Union beat Alabama by virtue of its single draftee. Where is Mt. Union? That claim is tantamount to saying that Kevin Scarbinsky had more rush yards than the Notre Dame offense through the first three games last year. They’re both true and meaningless statements.
Let’s get this straight; the Alabama program has been in decline over the past decade. The bad moments have been in abundance more than the good moments. If you need to look to draft day as an indicator of that then you’re an idiot. I’m looking to things like the SEC record, the losing streak against Auburn, the records against LSU and Tennessee. The bowl games Alabama has been to. The losses to teams like Northern Illinois, ULM, and UCF. That’s what tells me the program is down.
But you know what else? In the same stretch Auburn has won just as many SEC championships and been to just as many BSC games. Why not do an article about how Auburn hasn’t capitalized on their opportunities? But hey, they won six in a row and that’s all that matters. I guess when you don’t have “history and passion” that’s acceptable.
The difference is no one associated with this program finds the last several years acceptable. There is a desire to win – every game. There is a desire to win championships – not just share SEC West crowns. There is an expectation to be the best, tempered by the knowledge that things are lean (at least by the majority of fans) and what is wrong with that? If you are satisfied with mediocrity then you will always be mediocre. If you expect and demand to be the best, you will be disappointed on occasion, but it sure beats an existence defined by mediocrity.