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Interviews with  players

Touchdown Alabama Magazine

Nick Saban  Press  Conferences Interviews  with  players

Exclusive News  Surrounding  Crimson  Tide Nick  Saban  Press  Conferences Exclusive  News  Surrounding  Crimson  Tide

Every Tuesday  &  Thursday  at  6PM  CST   on   Every  Tuesday  &  Thursday  at  6PM  CST   “Your  source  for  Alabama  Football  News” on   “Your  source  for  Alabama  Football  News” @TDAPointsAfter @TouchdownAlabamaMagazine @TDAPointsAfter @TouchdownAlabamaMagazine Alabama’s  Premier  College  Football  Magazine

Alabama’s Premier  College  Football  Magazine

In This Issue 8

Crimson Extras


Saban Exclusive


Tide Trivia


Kent St./UA Unite


Q&A-Kerry Goode 34

2011 Roster


Catching Up With 36

The Lowdown


Recruiting Exclusive 42

Around the SEC


Pride in the Tide 44

Tide Talk


2011 Issue Release Dates

Dre Kirkpatick #21

Dre Kirkpatrick starts his junior season for the Tide this August. He is strong, agile and speedy. He is the Tide’s defensive back and has a total career total of 60 tackles. He earned the Bart Starr Most Improved Player Award after this spring’s practices. As a sophomore Kirkpatrick made a name for himself as a cornerback and shined as a defensive player for the Tide. He started 12 games as a true freshman and spent most of his time on special teams and in the defensive backfield as a reserve. Kirkpatrick is back to business and ready to start his junior year for the Tide. Photography By: Matt Gaston

August 24

Kent State

September 8

Penn State/North Texas



September 22ND

Arkansas/Florida Vanderbilt

October 6

th th

Ole Miss/Tennessee

October 27th


October 13


November 10

Miss St./Georgia Southern

November 17


Iron Bowl

M U L T I M E D I A Next Issue • Complete SEC Media Days Conference • 2011 SEC Breakdown Analysis/Predictions • Alabama Sleepers Watch list

Web Content • Post-Game Interviews • Game Footage • Press Conferences from Nick Saban • More From Larry Burton

Weekly Radio Show

• Coming Soon!

All content is the property of Touchdown Alabama Magazine. Touchdown Alabama Magazine reserves all rights to content in both the print and online ( versions of the publication. No image or text may be reproduced without written consent from Touchdown Alabama Magazine.

Fall 2011 | Volume 4, Issue 1


President/Publisher Bennie Bice

Editor-in-Chief Mike Lacy

Managing Editor Jennifer Gorham

COPY Editor Micah Phillips


BDL, Mark Lent, Matt Gaston, Cedric Mason, Caroline Dorning, The Bryant Museum, Kent State Athletic Comm.,,

Creative Director Cassandra Johnson

Graphic Design Tramayne Wright

Chief Information Officer Brian LaShomb

Website Designer Carey Landon

Public Relations Eric Hudson

Customer Relations Herb Neu


Larry Burton, DJ K Dub, Jennifer Gorham, Kassidy Hill, Ashley Johnson, Mike Lacy, John McWilliams, Mike Parker, Coe Robbins, Stephen E. Smith, Stephen M. Smith, Donald Staffo, Thomas Watts


Nancy Bates, Victoria Sheehan


Daphney Colinet, Lacey Ezekiel, Pat Richeson

Advertising 888-580-0852

MISSION STATEMENT “Touchdown Alabama Magazine was created to bring Alabama football fans the coverage of their team that they crave and expect, as well as to bring them closer to the action on the field. The University of Alabama has a long college football history, rich with tradition and triumph. Each season has added more dynamic players and colorful stories to the Alabama family. It is only fitting that a program with 13 National Championships should have a weekly magazine dedicated to conveying the excitement of the game to its devoted fans. Touchdown Alabama Magazine strives to be the most up-to-date, relevant and exciting magazine covering University of Alabama football. Furthermore, we guarantee in-depth articles, exclusive interviews and quality content surrounding the Crimson Tide. We will never forget for whom we generate this magazine: You the fan. God Bless.�

Letter from the Editor: Welcome back to Tuscaloosa! We at Touchdown Alabama Magazine are excited and eager for this season to kick off! Last season proved to be good, but this season will be just as thrilling! I hope each of you keep tuning into Touchdown Alabama Magazine and for Crimson Tide news, photos, updates and more. The magazine has been successful in its expansion and locations. We continue to distribute across the state at locations such as Barnes & Noble, convenient stores, the Supe Store and The Bryant Museum. The magazine is bursting with more Tide news in a colorful, glossy 48-page layout. There are changes to note about the upcoming season’s issues. Touchdown Alabama Magazine will only be printed on home games. But there is no need to worry! Home games that precede away games will be double-issued. The issue will cover both the home game and away game. This means you will be able to keep your issue longer and get more exclusive information earlier! TDAL is more interactive and user friendly. We would love to have each of you as a friend and follower. Check out our Facebook and Twitter accounts for the latest information on your favorite team and continue to make the Tide the best in the nation. We look forward to seeing the Tide roll and all the Bama fans return to Bryant-Denny Stadium! Roll Tide! Touchdown Alabama Magazine staff

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Tide Talk

“TIDE TALK” Coach Nick Saban "The outcome of this season is going to be created by what our players do. What we do, not what we can do, is what it is all going to come down to.” “We are excited about the challenges and opportunities that this team has this year.”

“It’s good knowing there will be a lot of opportunities for us this season. We will just need to make the most out of those opportunities even if it means not catching balls but making plays in other ways like blocking downfield and helping others succeed in the offense.”

"We have a lot of depth this year on the line. I think as much depth as I can remember since I have been here.”

William Vlachos “The newcomers we have this year are extremely impressive. The way they are all competing and have a grasp of what is going on has really jumped out at me. They are all very talented and the sky is the limit with them.” | Fall 2011

"It is always great to show our appreciation towards the fans for all the support they give us. It is a time to give back to them for all they have given us.”

Marquis Maze

Barrett Jones:


Josh Chapman

ASK DJ “What kinds of things can Alabama improve on offensively and defensively from the three losses in 2010 and what do you think you will see out of this year’s team that can make them better than last year’s squad?”

Offensively, Alabama needs to open themselves up to the idea of throwing the ball down field more. I believe last year’s offense settled too much, too quickly for the check down pass. I look for McCarron or Sims to get the ball down field early and often, to keep opposing defenses honest. Another area that could use improvement is the offensive line group. Although they did play fairly well in 2010, it was a major drop-off from the 2009 championship offensive line.The 2011 edition has to open up bigger running lanes and protect a new quarterback who will not have a lot of game time under his belt. If this line can protect the quarterback, this offense will reach the goals they set out to accomplish in 2011.

Defensively, Alabama needs to control the line of scrimmage, and it starts with the defensive line. Force teams to be one-dimensional, that way you can attack their offense more effectively. In the 2010 season, opposing teams seem to have had more success running the ball against the Crimson Tide’s front. If Alabama is able to shut down the run this year, they will shut down any and every offense they come across in 2011. I am also looking for better play out of our cornerback positions. Not being in the right position and mental breakdowns were the downfalls of last season’s defensive backs. If this group of young men play up to the standard coach Saban has brought forth, offenses playing the Tide in 2011 can hang it up. The 2011 edition of the Crimson Tide should be a team more focused on the goals that they have set out to reach. I expect for more players to step up and be a leader; that’s was the biggest difference in the 2009 team and the 2010. There was no clearcut leader or group of leaders on the team. If Alabama does all these things (pass downfield more, protect the quarterback and stop the run on defense), I believe you will see the Tide holding the BCS crystal football in the air at the end of the year.                                                                     Roll Tide!!!!! D.J K-Dub 

DJ K Dub is a member of the Sons of Saban. He is an avid Alabama football fan and is co-host of “In the Trenches” with Legend, his Sons of Saban brother. The show airs each Friday at noon on TouchdownAlabama. net. Be sure to stay updated with DJ as he answers questions from readers and fans like you. If you would like a question answered by DJ send it to:


When the Player Becomes

The Coach By: Kassidy Hill


ne decision can change a thousand lives. Such is the case with head coach Nick Saban. As the Alabama Crimson Tide takes the field against the Kent State Golden Flashes for the first time in school history, Touchdown Alabama Magazine takes a look back on his college days, and how one seemingly small decision sparked the legacy. The year was 1970, when Nick Saban became a part of the Kent State football team as a defensive back. Playing for the team through his graduation, Saban was able to share a roster with future Hall of Famer Jack Lambert and a team that won the only MAC championship in the school’s history. But Kent State remains special to Coach Saban for other reasons as well. There are a lot of things that students take away from college. For Saban he says it’s not the games he remembers, but instead the relationships he built at Kent State, many of which he still maintains. “I still have a lot of friends and relationships with guys I played with,” he said. “So there’s a lot of memories, but most of them are relationships. Most of them are people that were involved in that experience.” And perhaps even more important to Coach Saban were the coaches he played under at Kent State. Men such as head coach Don James, and his position coach, Mark Bynum. “Like a lot of players, I don’t remember very many games,” he admitted “I do remember winning the championship our senior year, which is the first maybe in a long time,but really what I remember the most is the relationships with the people. Relationships with people that were mentors to me, but mainly the coaches.” Saban says these men were academic mentors, who pushed academic excellence, something that he has carried with him and made a goal here at Alabama. Saban even credits James’s drive for high academics in helping him graduate. They also created an atmosphere in which football was enjoyable, a learning experience, and beneficial to every man on the field. Saban says that he and his team were always made


| Fall 2011

to feel prepared and were taught invaluable life lessons. And perhaps more important to fans, they were taught lessons in football that Coach Saban still reflects upon today. “[Coach James] certainly made football fun, in terms of, you always felt like you were well prepared,” Saban said. “We learned a tremendous amount of lessons in life that I still remember today. A lot of the systems that we used then, whether it’s the recruiting system that we use now, were basically well organized systems that he used with his coaches.” It is Coach James and others on the Kent State coaching Photography credit to

staff that football fans can thank for shaping Nick Saban into the man and coach that he became. What many may find shocking is that Saban never wanted to be a coach. While he did enjoy football, it was not what he really envisioned doing with his life. That is, until he graduated, and things began to change. Change in a way that is still having effects today. He had graduated from Kent State, but Terry, his future wife, still had another year. Deciding to make the time useful until she was done, Saban went back for his masters in sports management. During that time he was approached to fill a position as a graduate assistant coach for the football team. Figuring that he had nothing to lose and a year to fill, Saban took the job. And that was when Nick Saban, the former football player, began being molded into Nick Saban, the future football coach who would make such a mark on the game. “I probably would have never been a coach if it wasn’t for [Coach James] and [Mark Bybum],” he

confessed. “Because I had no intentions of being a coach. I would say those people had a tremendous impact on me.” However, when the two teams do take the field together, Saban says there will be no special emphasis on the game, at least for him. A man with a job to do, he is keeping his mind on his team. “I’m the coach here now,” Saban proudly stated That’s what matters. I’m concerned with our team, our fans and our program. Regardless of memories, I’m the coach here.” Others are sure to find the day special though. For who is to say what it was that really changed his mind. Maybe it was that extra year with those influential men in his life. It might have been that there was a coaching gene in him all along, and it took stepping into that role to realize it. But the Crimson Tide nation is thankful nonetheless. Because, if not for that time at Kent State, who knows where Nick Saban could be today.

“Regardless of memories, I’m the coach here.” - Nick Saban

Photography by Matt Gaston

1925 • 1926 • 1930 • 1934 • 1941 • 1961 • 1964 • 1965 • 1973 • 1978 • 1979 • 1992 • 2009 - NATIONAL CHAMPIONS |


Practice For Performance

Strength & Conditioning:

Back to Basics M

ost athletes today are weak and slow. It doesn’t matter what sport an athlete plays because they all have something in common: they need to be faster and stronger. If most athletes truly focused on bettering themselves, they could improve their performance and be ahead of the pack in their chosen sport. The athlete should focus on agility, flexibility, mobility and running mechanics because these qualities are important and basic. However, none of those qualities will help if the athlete is weak. To have any of those qualities which require strength, an athlete must be strong. In most cases getting an athlete able-bodied should be a priority. When strength improves, the athlete’s speed improves and their vertical jump will increase. The athlete will then hit, kick and throw harder and further. Not only will the athlete be in better shape, but as the athlete’s strength increases, the risk of injuries decreases. The next step to improving strength is to coach the athlete on how to run faster once the strength is present. The objective is to correct and teach the athlete to run properly by performing running mechanics or showing your athletes how to accelerate, decelerate and change directions properly. The lack of flexibility is seen at the


| Fall 2011

By: Johnny Jackson

professional level as well as at the high school level. Since flexibility is an issue among most athletes, it should be worked on everyday in a dynamic effort before workouts and static after workouts. There could be countless reasons why athletes aren’t as flexible as they could be, but some of these reasons are: growth spurts and the inactivity caused by computer use or video games. Most athletes intend to have a hefty bench-press limit. While there is nothing wrong with having such an outstanding goal, the athlete needs to avoid injury. To test the athlete’s ability, five or six chin-ups should be performed before they are ready for bench pressing their limit. An important focus is to make sure the athlete can do body weight exercises correctly. When this is achieved the athlete is ready for the next progression and more of a work load. Specialization training for young athletes is a popular topic these days, but this type of training is very demanding and unsafe. Most young athletes’ focus should be about becoming better all-around athletes and not on being a sports superstar. Above all, the main point is to keep it fun because when the day is done they are still kids. When the time is right and they are ready to progress, then take it to the next level.

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Kent State & UA

Kent State & Alabama

Lend A Hand


he Alabama Crimson Tide and Kent State Golden Flashes will meet for the first time on the gridiron on Sept. 3. But all of that was put to the side on a hot, humid July day when players and administrators from Kent State made the trek down to Tuscaloosa to help others in need after the deadly April 27 tornado ravaged the cities of Tuscaloosa, Alberta City and Holt. One of the front-runners in restoring some sort of normalcy to these communities was Habitat for Humanity Tuscaloosa. Their web site states that the organization was founded in 1987 by Hank Hawkins. “Over the years, Tuscaloosa Habitat has built many homes in partnership with many families, volunteers, donors and friends,” says their web site. “Today, with a new staff and ReStore, we continue to serve the community of Tuscaloosa with simple, decent, affordable housing.” In a press release written by Kent State, the trip was coordinated by the American Red Cross and the Toomer’s for Tuscaloosa organization. The athletes volunteered for the City


| Fall 2011

By: Coe Robbins

of Tuscaloosa’s McAbee Volunteer Center where they spent the next two days in Alabama helping rebuild Tuscaloosa as well as holding a football clinic at Holt High School for underprivileged kids around the local area. “Our players are excited to go down and lend a helping hand in the Tuscaloosa community,” Kent State head football coach Darrell Hazell said in a press release. “What life really boils down to sometimes is being able to help those in need. These four young men will represent the Kent State community well.” Representing Kent State were players Spencer Keith, Ishmaa’ily Kitchen, Lee Stalker, Jacquise Terry and assistant athletic director for communications Alan Ashby. Joining the Kent State staff were Alabama players John Fulton, D.J. Fluker, Vinnie Sunseri, Nico Johnson and Caleb Castille along with student volunteers from the University of Alabama and Auburn University. The project was organized by Habitat for Humanity and was in the process of rebuilding homes in Holt when the players came in to volunteer even with their busy Photography by Caroline Dorning

schedules. Terry, a native of Phenix City, Ala., was thrilled to be able to lend a hand. “Once I heard about the opportunity to come back down to my home state and help a family out [tornado victims] I was eager to come down here and help out,” Terry said. Even though the two teams have never met on the football field before, there are some connections between the two schools. Both Nick and Terry Saban were graduates of Kent State and Ashby saw the opportunity to make it something special. “With us opening against Alabama, and Coach Saban and his wife Terry both being Kent State grads, it made sense,” Ashby said. “We’re excited to be here and help out in any small way we can.” Executive director of Habitat for Humanity Tuscaloosa Bob Johnson told The Birmingham News that it is nice to have these two teams set their differences aside on the football field and come together to help their fellow man. “In this case, we’ve got these guys that will square off together on Sept. 3, so we can even unite Kent State and the

University of Alabama players, because the real purpose of being in there is to serve this family that lost everything in the storms,” Johnson said. Saban later came by to get a first-hand glimpse of the project at hand. Saban had been fielding questions all day from reporters at SEC Media Days but that wasn’t going to stop the Kent State grad from seeing the human spirit at its best. “Our goal is to rebuild this community,” Saban told volunteers. “You’re certainly going to restore the quality of life of someone [affected by the tornadoes].” In an email written to Ashby, development director with the American Red Cross of West Alabama Bev Leigh wrote a note of appreciation to the Kent State program. “On behalf of the entire American Red Cross organization and the people of Tuscaloosa, I thank you and your student-athletes for your spirit of volunteerism,” Leigh wrote. On Sept. 3, these two teams will go at it in a place they both helped rebuild. It’s a form of shared common ground they can cherish for the rest of their lives.

“What life really boils down to sometimes is being able to help those in need.” - Darrell Hazell

Photo Credit to Kent State Athletic Comm. 1925 • 1926 • 1930 • 1934 • 1941 • 1961 • 1964 • 1965 • 1973 • 1978 • 1979 • 1992 • 2009 - NATIONAL CHAMPIONS |



Alabama Football Roster N O NAME 1 Demetrius Hart 2 Tana Patrick 2 DeAndrew White 3 Trent Richardson 4 Mark Barron 4 Marquis Maze 5 Jerrell Harris 6 Hasean Clinton-Dix 6 Blake Sime 7 Kenny Bell 8 Duron Carter 8 Jeoffrey Pagan 9 Phelon Jones 10 John Fulton 10 A.J. McCarron 11 Brandon Gibson 12 Phillip Ely 13 Danny Woodson, Jr. 14 Phillip Sims 15 Darius Hanks 16 Bradley Sylve 17 Brad Smelley 18 Morgan Ogilvie 18 Levi Cook 19 Jonathan Atchison 20 Nate Carlson 20 Jarrick Williams 21 Brent Calloway 21 Ben Howell 21 Dre Kirkpatrick 22 Christion Jones 24 Nathan McAlister 24 DeQuan Menzie 25 Caleb Castille 26 Jabriel Washington 26 Nick Tinker 27 Nick Perry 28 DeMarcus Milliner 29 Cody Mandell 29 Will Lowery 30 Dont’a Hightower 31 John Baites 32 C.J. Mosley 33 Trey DePriest 34 Hunter Bush 35 Nico Johnson 36 Chris Jordan 37 Robert Lester 40 DeMarcus DuBose 41 Courtney Upshaw 42 Adrian Hubbard 42 Eddie Lacy 43 Cade Foster


CLS HT FR 5-9 SO 6-3 FR 6-0 JR 5-11 SR 6-2 SR 5-10 SR 6-3 FR 6-1 FR 6-0 SO 6-1 JR 6-4 FR 6-4 SR 5-11 SO 6-0 SO 6-4 SR 6-2 FR 6-1 FR 6-1 FR 6-2 JR 6-0 FR 5-11 SR 6-3 SO 6-0 JR 5-10 SO 6-3 JR 6-4 SO 6-1 FR 6-1 JR 5-9 JR 6-3 FR 5-11 SO 5-11 SR 6-0 FR 5-11 FR 5-11 SO 5-10 SO 6-1 SO 6-1 SO 6-4 JR 5-10 JR 6-4 SR 6-1 SO 6-2 FR 6-2 JR 5-11 JR 6-3 SR 6-3 JR 6-2 JR 6-1 SR 6-2 FR 6-6 SO 6-0 SO 6-1

WT 187 236 181 224 218 180 242 203 212 175 210 272 194 187 205 194 187 205 212 185 170 229 198 190 240 236 210 217 202 192 175 165 198 170 165 207 205 196 202 180 260 231 234 242 195 245 240 210 240 265 237 220 216

HOMETOWN LAST SCHOOL Orlando, Fla. Dr. Phillips Bridgeport, Ala. North Jackson Houston, Texas North Shore Pensacola, Fla. Escambia Mobile, Ala. St. Paul’s Birmingham, Ala. Tarrant Gadsden, Ala. Gadsden City Orlando, Fla. Dr. Phillips Gainesville, Ga. Gainesville Rayville, La. Rayville Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. Aquinas Asheville, NC Asheville Moblie, Ala. LSU Manning, S.C. Manning Mobile, Ala. St. Paul’s Episcopal School Mobile, Ala. UMS-Wright Tampa, Fla. Plant Mobile, Ala. LeFlore Chesapeake, Va. Oscar Smith Norcross, Ga. Norcross Port Sulphur, La. S. Plaquemines Tuscaloosa, Ala. American Christian Mountain Brook, Ala. Mountain Brook Decatur, Ala. Decatur Atlanta, Ga. Douglass Birmingham, Ala. Air Force Mobile, Ala. Blount Russellville, Ala. Russellville Gordo, Ala. Gordo Gadsden, Ala. Gadsden City Adamsville, Ala. Minor Russellville, Ala. Russellville Columbus, Ga. Copiah-Lincoln CC Birmingham, Ala. Briarwood Christian Jackson, Tn. Trinity Christian Ac. Ralph, Ala. Tuscaloosa County Prattville, Ala. Prattville Millbrook, Ala. Stanhope Elmore Lafayette, La. Acadiana Hoover, Ala. Hoover Lewisburg, Tenn. Marshall County Hendersonville, Tenn. Beech Theodore, Ala. Theodore Springfield, Oh. Springfield Wetumpka, Ala. Wetumpka Andalusia, Ala. Andalusia Brentwood, Tenn. Brentwood Academy Foley, Ala. Foley Montgomery, Ala. Jefferson Davis Eufaula, Ala. Eufaula Lawrenceville, Ga. Norcross Geismar, La. Dutchtown Southlake, Texas Southlake Carroll

43 Taylor Conant WR JR 6-0 195 Tuscaloosa, Ala. Tuscaloosa Academy 44 Jay Williams P FR 6-3 221 Thomasville, Ala. Thomasville 44 LaMichael Fanning DE FR 6-7 275 Hamilton, Ga. Harris County 45 Jalston Fowler FB SO 6-1 246 Mobile, Ala. Vigor 47 Xzavier Dickson LB FR 6-3 240 Griffin, Ga. Griffin 48 Rowdy Harrell LB SR 6-0 219 Moundville, Ala. Hale County NO NAME P HT WT CLS HOMETOWN LAST SCHOOL 49 Ed Stinson LB/DL FR 6-4 252 Homestead, Fla. South Dade 49 Ranzell Watkins DB SO 5-9 170 Charlotte, N.C. Independence 51 Wilson Love DE FR 6-3 276 Mountainbrook, Ala. Mountainbrook 51 Carson Tinker LS JR 6-1 220 Murfreesboro, Tenn. Riverdale 52 Alfred McCullough T SR 6-2 311 Athens, Ala. Athens 53 Anthony Orr DL FR 6-4 258 Madison, Ala. Sparkman 54 Russell Raines OL SO 6-2 281 Satsuma, Ala. Satsuma 54 Jesse Williams NT JR 6-4 319 Brisbane, Australia Cavendish Road 56 William Ming DL SO 6-3 283 Athens, Ala. Athens 57 DJ Pettway DE FR 6-2 272 Pensacola, Fla. Catholic 57 Aaron Joiner OL JR 6-2 275 Florence, Ala. Florence 58 Nick Gentry DL SR 6-1 284 Prattville, Ala. Prattville 59 Arie Kouandjio OL FR 6-5 309 Beltsville, Md. DeMatha Catholic 61 Anthony Steen G SO 6-3 303 Lambert, Miss. Lee Academy 62 Brandon Ivory NT FR 6-4 308 Memphis, Tenn. East 63 Kellen Williams OL SO 6-3 305 Lawrenceville, Ga. Brookwood 65 Chance Warmack G JR 6-3 320 Atlanta, Ga. Westlake 67 John Michael Boswell OL SR 6-5 300 Northport, Ala. Tuscaloosa County 68 Austin Gray OL SO 6-0 309 Woodstock, Ga. Pope 68 Issac Luatua OL FR 6-2 299 La Marida, Ca. La Marida 70 Ryan Kelly OL FR 6-5 281 West Chester, Oh. Lakota West 71 Cyrus Kouandjio OL FR 6-6 322 Woodstock, Ga. Pope 72 Tyler Love T JR 6-6 307 Mountain Brook, Ala. Mountain Brook 73 William Vlachos C SR 6-1 294 Birmingham, Ala. Mountain Brook 75 Barrett Jones G JR 6-5 311 Memphis, Tenn. Evangelical Christian 76 D.J. Fluker OL SO 6-6 335 Foley, Ala. Foley 78 Chad Lindsay OL FR 6-2 287 The Woodlands, Texas The Woodlands 79 Austin Shepherd OT FR 6-5 321 Buford, Ga. North Gwinnett 80 Marvin Shinn WR FR 6-3 193 Prichard, Ala. Vigor 81 William Strickland WR SR 6-0 191 ********* ******* 81 Hardie Buck WR JR 5-9 190 Birmingham, Ala. Vestavia Hills 82 Harrison Jones TE FR 6-4 248 Memphis, Tn. Evangelical Christian 83 Kevin Norwood WR SO 6-2 193 D’Iberville, Miss. D’Iberville 84 Brian Vogler TE FR 6-7 252 Columbus, Ga. Brookstone 85 Malcom Faciane TE FR 6-5 259 Picayune, Ms. Memorial 86 Undra Billingsley DE JR 6-2 288 Birmingham, Ala. Woodlawn 87 Chris Underwood TE SR 6-4 243 Vestavia Hills, Ala. Vestavia Hills 88 Michael Bowman WR SO 6-4 225 Rossville, Ga. Ridgeland 89 Michael Williams TE JR 6-6 269 Reform, Ala. Pickens County 90 Jeremy Shelley K JR 5-10 165 Raleigh, N.C. Broughton 90 Quinton Dial DL JR 6-6 294 Pinson, Ala. East Mississippi CC 91 Alex Watkins LB SR 6-3 234 Brownsville, Tenn. Haywood 92 Damion Square DE JR 6-3 285 Houston, Texas Yates 93 Chris Bonds DE SO 6-4 269 Columbia, S.C. Richland Northeast 95 Brandon Lewis DL JR 6-3 288 Pleasant Grove, Ala. Pleasant Grove 99 Josh Chapman NT SR 6-1 310 Hoover, Ala. Hoover


Kent State Football Roster NO NAME 1 Dri Archer 1 Darius Polk 2 Sal Battles 2 Josh Pleasant 3 Leon Green 3 Spencer Keith 4 Eric Adeyemi 4 C.J. Steward 5 Tyshon Goode 5 Roosevelt Nix 5 Matt Rinehart 6 Dana Brown Jr. 6 Chris Gilbert 7 Cedric McCloud 7 Fabrice Pratt 8 Matthew Hurdle 8 Calvin Tiggle 10 Chris Humphrey 10 Andre Parker 11 Evan Shimensky 11 Norman Wolfe Jr. 12 Luke Smurthwaite 13 Kyle Reese 13 Jordan Tarver 14 Dylan Farrington 15 Kendrick Pressley 16 Sam Miller 17 Jerrod Ronyak 18 Sam Kirkland 18 Chevin Meadows 19 Josh Boyle 20 Larry Dawson 20 Malcom Pannell 21 Robert Hollomon 21 Sidney Saulter 22 Joe Kenn 22 Jacquise Terry 23 Jeremy McCoy 24 Jon Simpson 25 John Sanders 26 Brian Hummer 27 Derek Jones 28 Anthony Meray 30 Luke Batton 31 Devante’ Strickland 32 Terrell Bates 32 Steve Mehrer 33 Tristin Boykin 34 Trayion Durham 34 Richard Gray 34 Ryan Hidalgo

P HT WT RB 5-8 164 DB 6-0 183 QB 5-11 218 DB 5-10 185 S 5-11 204 QB 6-3 221 WR 6-0 182 LB 6-1 224 WR 6-1 185 DL 6-0 244 P 5-9 180 DL 6-0 281 WR 6-0 205 QB 6-1 234 DB 6-2 184 WR 6-3 185 DB 5-10 195 WR 6-1 179 LB 6-1 215 QB 5-10 175 DB 5-8 163 QB 6-1 194 LB 6-0 219 QB 5-11 211 DB 6-1 184 WR 5-11 187 CB/WR 6-0 184 QB 6-3 225 WR 6-0 189 CB 5-11 188 WR 5-10 155 RB 6-0 199 CB 5-11 163 RB 5-9 165 DB 6-0 178 LB 5-10 205 RB 6-0 191 WR 6-1 191 TE 6-5 237 DB 5-10 209 DB 5-10 202 LB 6-3 235 RB 5-7 191 LB 6-0 224 SS 6-1 217 RB 5-9 205 LB 6-1 221 RB 6-0 192 RB 6-0 260 DE 6-2 277 LS 6-1 212

CLS HOMETOWN LAST SCHOOL Jr./Jr. Laurel, Fla. Venice Jr./So. Lynchburg, Va. Virginia Episcopal Sr./Jr. Youngstown, Oh. East Sr./Sr. Germantown, Md. Watkins Mill Sr./Jr. Monroeville, Pa. Gateway Jr./Jr. Little Rock, Ark. Pulaski Academy Sr./Jr. Miami, Fla. Southridge Jr./So. Jacksonville, Fla. Wolfson Jr./Jr. Syracuse, N.Y. Nottingham So./So.Reynoldsburg, Oh. Reynoldsburg Sr./Sr. Dover, Oh. Dover Jr./Jr. McKeesport, Pa. McKeesport Area Sr./Sr. Huntersville, N.C. Hopewell So./Fr. Jacksonville, Fla. William M. Raines Jr./So. Miami, Fla. Sunset Sr./Jr. Richmond, Va. Highland Springs So./Fr. Ellenwood, Ga. Woodland Fr./Fr. Solon, Oh. Solon Fr./Fr. Ruckersville, Va. Fork Union Fr./Fr. Kent, Oh. Roosevelt Sr./Sr. Akron, Oh. Buchtel Fr./Fr. Grove City, Oh. Grove City 5th/Sr. Olmsted Falls, Oh. Olmsted Falls Fr./Fr. Stone Mountain, Ga. Stephenson So./Fr. Chapel Hill, N.C. Chapel Hill Sr./Sr. Sumter, S.C. Sumter So./Fr. Orrville, Oh. Orrville So./Fr. Burton, Oh. Lake Catholic 5th/Sr. Chesapeake, Va. Deep Creek Fr./Fr. Akron, Oh. Buchtel Fr./Fr. Venice, Fla. Venice Jr./Jr. Akron, Oh. North High So./So.Pickerington, Oh. Pickerington Central So./Fr. Philadelphia, Pa. West Catholic Sr./Jr. Miami, Fla. North Miami Fr./Fr. Gilbert, Ariz. Perry Sr./Sr. Phenix City, Ala. Pacelli Fr./Fr. Columbus, Oh. Marion-Franklin 5th/Sr. Chatham, Va. Nansemond River Fr./Fr. Columbus, Oh. Northland 5th/Sr. Napoleon, Oh. Napoleon So./Fr. Grove City, Oh. Westerville South Fr./Fr. Spanaway, Wash. Bethel Jr./Jr. Macedonia, Oh. Nordonia Fr./Fr. Columbus, Oh. Marion-Franklin Fr./Fr. Cleveland, Oh. St. Edward So./Fr. Dublin, Oh. Dublin Jerome Fr./Fr. Centerville, Oh. Centerville Fr./Fr. Cincinnati, Oh. Colerain So./So.Pittsburgh, Pa. Woodland Hills Sr./Sr. Fayetteville, Ga. Whitewater

35 Trip Ison LS 6-1 253 Sr./Jr. Roanoke, Va. William Byrd 37 Lamar Washinton RB 6-0 228 5th/Sr. East Islip, N.Y. East Islip 39 Luke Wollet S 6-1 193 So./So.Poland, Oh. Poland Seminary 41 Zack Hitchens LB/DE 6-2 237 So./So.Canal Winchester, Oh. Canal Winchester 42 Tim Erjavec TE/FB 6-1 232 Jr./So. Willowick, Oh. Lake Catholic 43 C.J. Malauulu LB 6-1 235 Jr./Jr. Oceanside, Calif. El Camino 44 Alex Belconis FB 6-0 240 Fr./Fr. Mentor, Oh. Mentor 44 Byron Tyson LB 5-10 215 5th/Sr. Greenville, N.C. J.H. Rose 45 Freddy Cortez PK 6-0 200 Jr./Jr. Fort Meade, Fla. Fort Meade NO NAME P HT WT CLS HOMETOWN LAST SCHOOL 46 Nick Conrad LB 6-0 222 Fr./Fr. Stow, Oh. Stow-Munroe Falls 47 Mark Fackler DE 6-3 244 So./So.Kenton, Oh. Kenton 48 Nate Vance DE/LS 6-1 228 So./Fr. Stow, Oh. Stow-Munroe Falls 49 Darius Petraitis LB 6-1 213 5th/Sr. Cleveland, Oh. Villa Angela-St. Joseph 51 Jake Dooley DE 6-3 238 Jr./Jr. Mason, Oh. Mason 53 Carlows Brown DL 6-0 264 So./Fr. McKeesport, Pa. McKeesport Area 55 Chris Anzevino OL 6-2 289 5th/Sr. Warren, Oh. Warren G. Harding 55 Elias Sayre DL 6-4 232 So./Fr. Lebanon, Oh. Lebanon 58 Danny Gress LB 6-0 230 Jr./So. Englewood, Oh. Northmont 61 Josh Kline OL 6-3 304 Sr./Jr. Mason, Oh. Mason 63 Alex Thomasson LS 6-1 201 5th/Sr. Maumee, Oh. Maumee 65 Kent Cleveland OL 6-4 300 Sr./Jr. Atlanta, Ga. St. Pius X 66 Brian Winters OL 6-6 294 Jr./Jr. Hudson, Oh. Hudson 67 Terrell Johnson OL 6-4 299 So./Fr. Pasadena, Md. Archbishop Spalding 68 Jason Bitsko OL 6-2 264 Fr./Fr. Huber Heights, Oh. Wayne 70 Tyler Arend OL 6-5 295 Jr./So. Paulding, Oh. Paulding 71 Johnny Simon OL 6-4 250 Fr./Fr/ Stow, Oh. Stow-Munroe Falls 72 Vince Boden OL 6-10 330 So./So.Seven Hills, Oh. Normandy 72 Anthony Pruitt DE 6-2 299 Fr./Fr. Columbus, Oh. Groveport Madison 73 Charles Laster OL 6-7 330 5th/Sr. Mableton, Ga. South Cobb 74 Tom Pizzurro OL 6-3 300 So./Fr. Armonk, N.Y. St.ThomasAquinas(Fla.) 75 Phil Huff OL 6-3 266 So./So.Hilliard, Oh. Hilliard Davidson 76 Robert Kearney OL 6-5 282 So./So.Durham, N.C. Northern 77 Max Plunkett OL 6-7 309 Jr./So. Dayton, Oh. Archbishop Alter 77 Lee Stalker DL 6-3 274 5th/Sr. Butler, Pa. Butler 78 Shawn Wheeler OL 6-3 285 So./Fr. Brazil, Ind. Northview 80 Andrew Christopher TE 6-4 245 Jr./So. Chardon, Oh. Chardon 81 Justin Thompson TE 6-1 230 Sr./Sr. Gahanna, Oh. St. Francis DeSales 82 Chris Gordon WR 5-10 170 Sr./Jr. Miami, Fla. Coral Gables 83 Markus Burton TE 6-2 215 5th/Sr. Columbus, Oh. Beechcroft 84 Kyle Payton TE 6-3 245 Fr./Fr. Dublin, Oh. Hilliard Davidson 85 Kadin Kerns PK 5-7 157 Fr./Fr. Bradenton, Fla. Braden River 85 C.J. Matthews WR 5-10 192 Jr./Jr. Cleveland, Oh. Solon 87 Mike Garrison TE 6-7 230 Fr./Fr. Stow, Oh. Stow-Munroe Falls 88 Casey Pierce TE 6-4 220 So./Fr. Parma, Oh. Normandy 90 Xavier Douglas TE 6-2 220 So./Fr. Akron, Oh. CuyahogaValleyChr.Aca. 92 Andrew Horning P 6-1 202 So./So.Akron, Oh. Stow-Munroe Falls 93 Ishmaa’ily Kitchen DL 6-3 334 5th/Sr. Youngstown, Oh. Cardinal Mooney 95 Nate Terhune DE 6-3 251 Fr./Fr. Chagrin Falls, Oh. Orange 96 Marc Lechlitner LB 6-0 229 5th/Sr. Seven Hills, Oh. Normandy 97 Clay Miller DL 6-3 231 Fr./Fr. Maple Heights, Oh. Maple Heights 98 Charles Bushley LS 6-0 219 Fr./Fr. Berea, Oh. St. Edward

Opposing Team

Kent State

ventures to Tuscaloosa By: Jennifer Gorham

The Crimson Tide will duke it out against the Golden Flashes of Kent State to start the season off and here is a look at two key players you need to know about.


#3 Spencer Keith

porting the No. 3 jersey is Spencer Keith. He is Kent State’s quarterback and stands 6-feet-3-inches and weighs in at 221 pounds. He is ranked 5th among Kent State’s all-time leaders for passing yards, coming in at 4,359. He is also ranked 6th among all-time leaders with the completion of 22 passes for touchdowns. Last season, Keith completed 59.1 percent of his passes, making him the 2nd highest in Kent State history. Along with his high ranks in completions, he threw for 2,212 yards and added three rushing touchdowns. While he is known as a quarterback, Keith has a secret skill for punting. He let some of that skill be known when he punted against the Penn State Nittany Lions last season and each of his kicks were downed at the 10-yard line. He was also named MAC East Offensive Player of the Week after he threw three touchdown passes in the Murray State game, according to He set freshman records when he threw for 2,147 yards and 14 touchdowns during the 2009 season. While this player now has some experience and is ranked with the best, he will perform in front of Tuscaloosa’s most devout fans.


his sophomore defensive lineman weighs in at 244 pounds and stands 6 feet even. He is one of five returning defensive starters for the Golden Flashes of Kent State and has numerous football achievements. Roosevelt Nix finished last season as the MAC Freshman of the Year and MAC Defensive Player of the Year. He was the first freshman to ever be awarded the MAC Defensive Player of the Year award. He is on a couple of watch lists for this season. Those lists include Bednarik and Nagurski Watch lists and Rotary Lombardi Award Watch List. He led the MAC with 20 tackles for loss, was named to Phil Steele’s Mid-Season All-American Fourth Team and ended his freshman season with 43 tackles and eight quarterback hurries. Prior to Kent State, Nix was named the OCC player of the year, second team all-state and first team all-district. He was selected to play in the Ohio North-South All-Star Game and in the Big 33 Game, according to Nix has shattered goals and made a football reputation for himself with his high school experience and college talent. He has been preparing for the 2011 season and will be returning for his sophomore season by stepping onto the field at Bryant-Denny Stadium.


| Fall 2011

#5 Roosevelt Nix

Photo Credit to

Player Spotlight

Hightower’s Hard Work Pays Off By: Jennifer Gorham


| Fall 2011

Photography by Mark Lent


eginning as a true-freshman starter in 2008, receiving a medical redshirt in 2009 and bursting through high expectations in 2010, Dont’a Hightower means business. He relinquished his opportunity at the NFL Draft and is returning for another season with the Tide. The 6-foot-4, 260-pound linebacker hails from Lewisburg, Tenn. He attended Marshall County high school and, before joining the Tide, ranked him as the No. 15 linebacker in the country. While starting 14 games his freshman year he racked up 64 tackles, 26 of those being solo, which ranked him fourth on the team. Hightower had his career-high 11 tackles against LSU during his first season. He was widely recognized for the many awards he recieved during the 2008 season. He was named Freshman All-American by the FWAA at linebacker, was recognized as second-team Freshman All-American by The Sporting News, was a midseason Freshman All-America selection by and a Freshman All-SEC selection by league coaches. Hightower suffered a season-ending injury against Arkansas in 2009. He underwent knee surgery and was out with a medical redshirt for his second season with the Tide. Although his season ended early, he made appearances in four games. He returned in 2010 for his sophomore season at BryantDenny. He not only returned to the field in 2010, but earned several awards. He was honored as second-team All-SEC by the Associated Press and SEC coaches. He was second on the team with 69 tackles, 30 of which were solo. He also managed nine quarterback hurries and had three pass breakups to finish off the season. He won the Lee Roy Jordan Headhunter Award earlier this year and looks to start the 2011 season headstrong. Besides a minor hand injury, his health has improved and he comes in more experienced this fall. Head coach Nick Saban has only good things to say for Hightower’s recovery. “It is a big difference,” Saban says. “I tell him all the time. He looks a lot faster and quicker. He has lower body fat percentage. Dont’a really has a good attitude, and I think he has more confidence in his leadership skills when he plays well, and he is playing well right now. We are excited, and I’m happy for Dont’a because it was hard on him. He knew that he wasn’t playing as well as he could have last year.” As for starting the season off on a good note, Hightower agrees with Saban and is ready to hit the field against the Golden Flashes of Kent State. “I feel a lot better,” Hightower confessed. “I just feel like my old self. I’m back in shape and my weight is down and I’m playing a lot faster. It feels great after all the hard work I put in.”

“He knew that he wasn’t playing as well as he could have last year.” -Nick Saban 1925 • 1926 • 1930 • 1934 • 1941 • 1961 • 1964 • 1965 • 1973 • 1978 • 1979 • 1992 • 2009 - NATIONAL CHAMPIONS |


Larry’s Lowdown

By: Larry Burton

Saban Talks of Retirement


hen I heard that Nick Saban wanted to give some comments about his retirement at Alabama, my heart skipped a beat and I couldn’t swallow for a moment. Could this really be true? Then I learned that Saban merely wanted to reinforce the commitment he has to Alabama and to let the fans, players, future players and media all know, once and for all, that he’d never leave Alabama unless it’s to take the Lake Burton handy man job at his and Terry’s home in Georgia. Sure Tommy Tuberville said he’d leave Ole Miss in a pine box and other coaches have all eluded to staying put till the end and then left, but he wanted to make this statement in front of cameras so all could see the sincerity on his face and the emotion in his voice. Opponents have long hoped that Saban could be lured back into the NFL, on to Notre Dame or go anywhere other than staying here and making their life miserable. They’ve often speculated such thoughts in blogs and bylines but now you may simply discard such rumors as just that. While it’s true that Nick Saban has never stayed at one place more than five years, he does start his sixth year this season in Tuscaloosa. He has had 13 jobs since deciding on this vocation and for Saban, 13 may have been his lucky number. Did you catch Saban saying that “we” meaning he and Terry would be ending our coaching careers at Alabama. They are a partnership. There is no school who could outbid Alabama for his services, but Saban insists that money is no longer an issue. Of course, with him already being one of the highest paid coaches in the country, why should it be? The simple truth is that Saban, the consummate moving coach, has finally found a home. Alabama not only provides him the financial security he desires, but an administration devoted to giving him the best facilities and educational venues to sell recruits as well. It also gives him a fiery fan base that is only matched by his own desire to win. The other intangibles that Alabama gives Saban is a tradition and mystique to sell to recruits and a location right in the middle of the most fertile recruiting grounds in the United States. The other thing the job in Tuscaloosa gives him is not only appreciation, but adulation. They’ve already erected a statue to the man in the famed Walk of Champions and here, he surpasses even the governor of the state as not only the most important figure, but the most newsworthy.


| Fall 2011

Photography by Matt Gaston

Lastly, Saban turns 60 this fall and maybe he’s just reached the age of not wanting to move again and having to start a rebuilding process. Alabama is the perfect place to end his career and leave a lasting legacy, joining the upper ranks of college football’s almost mythical hero coaches whose name became synonymous with the schools they coached at, like Paul “Bear” Bryant at Alabama, Bo Schembechler at Michigan and Tom Osborn at Nebraska. Of course Saban has been telling us that for years, but many just weren’t listening. Take his speech from the contract signing as a prime example of Saban being as clear as he can be. In his speech at that news conference he said, “Terry [Nick’s wife] and I are pleased and happy that the University of Alabama has offered us an extension to our original contract. Our acceptance of the extension expresses our commitment to the University of Alabama for the rest of our coaching career.” “Dr. Witt and the university community have been tremendous in terms of their cooperation in rebuilding the football program,” he said. “The outstanding support from [athletic director] Mal [Moore] and the athletic department have set the table for us to be successful. We greatly appreciate the time, effort and dedication of everyone involved with our football program, as well as the positive energy our fans have demonstrated since we’ve been in Tuscaloosa.” But even after reading this, there will be those who sling his name around the next time a big NFL opening comes up. I guess Saban will just never convince some people. But to Saban, he can finally know that he’s at his final stop and the knowledge of that gives both him and Terry a chance to just enjoy the years they have left here without worry of the future. Though Saban has a soft spot in his heart for each of the places he’s coached, he will be a retired coach one day for the rest of his life, still wearing Alabama gear on the golf courses and still being an active member of Alabama Nation. After all, this is now home and you never quit loving home.

The other intangibles that Alabama gives Saban is a tradition and mystique to sell to recruits and a location right in the middle of the most fertile recruiting grounds in the United States





Around the SEC

with Stephen E. Smith The 2011 football season is here, and it is time to catch up on the latest SEC news. Here is a quick glance around the league.

The West Arkansas Razorbacks

The Razorbacks not only have to replace first-round draft pick Ryan Mallet, but Knile Davis will miss the entire season with a left ankle injury. Replacing the offensive fire power of last year and finding defensive leadership are keys to Arkansas’s success in the West.

Auburn Tigers

Life after Newton proves to be a difficult one. Many expect Barrett Trotter[Jr.] to take the starting job at quarterback, but Clint Moseley[So.] and Keihl Frazier[Fr.] are fighting for the opportunity. The Tigers are the only SEC team that will play all seven preseason top 25 SEC schools. Having to replace Cam Newton, Nick Fairley, Wes Byrum and four offensive linemen through their schedule could lead to a rough road ahead.

Mississippi State

Quarterback Chris Relf and company look to build on their 52-14 victory over Michigan in the Gator Bowl last season. The offense returns eight starters, and the 22nd ranked 2010 defense returns seven. Dan Mullen has this program going in the right direction.


| Fall 2011

Ole Miss

Offensive Coordinator David Lee has three potential quarterbacks who could replace Jeremiah Masoli. Zack Stoudt, Barry Brunetti and Randell Mackey are battling for the spot, but look for Barry Brunetti to take most of the snaps this season. The Rebels have a talented recruiting class, but may struggle developing their youth.

LSU Tigers

New season, same question: can LSU find a quarterback? Coach Les Miles hired Steve Kragthorpe as Offensive Coordinator during the off-season. Unfortunately, Kragthorpe was recently diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease, and stepped down to become the quarterback coach. Greg Strudawa is the acting OC. The Tigers are predicted to win the West and pursue a national title, but Jordan Jefferson has to perform.

Alabama Crimson Tide

The Tide has nine starters returning from a defense that allowed only 13.5 points per game in 2010. With Saban, defense is rarely a problem. Following a devastating loss in the Iron Bowl, complacency seems unthinkaible. AJ McCarron and Phillip Sims will share time early on as the quarterback position seems to be the biggest question mark for the Tide. Look for the offense to rely on Trent Richardson heavily early on.

The East Florida Gators

Head coach Will Muschamp looks to return the Gators to prominence with the help of Offensive Coordinator Charlie Weis. The Gators offense may struggle with the move from the spread to a pro-style offense. The new offense will be on the shoulders of quarterback John Brantley and the running back duo of Jeff Demps and Chris Rainey.

Georgia Bulldogs

Quarterback Aaron Murray will try to keep Coach Mark Richt’s seat cold, but needs a supporting cast. Running back Caleb King was declared ineligible, and along with the loss of A.J. Green, Murray may have to do it all for the Bulldogs.

Tennessee Volunteers

The Vols have high hopes for quarterback Tyler Bray. He will have the help of senior running back Tauren Poole, but the Vols need to play better in October. In 2010, the Vols went 0-4 in the month. Youth and inexperience plague the defensive line and linebackers.

Vanderbilt Commodores

The Commodores are looking for a fresh start with new Head Coach James Franklin beginning his first season. Casey Hayward, 1st team all-SEC defensive back, is without question the leader of a struggling defense. Look for small steps of improvement in an exciting time for Vanderbilt football.

Kentucky Wildcats

Head coach Joker Phillips expects this year’s Wildcats to steadily improve from last year. The offense will live and die by the arms and legs of junior quarterback Morgan Newton.

South Carolina Gamecocks

The Gamecocks have the offensive tools to compete for the SEC title. Stephen Garcia has talent, Alshon Jeffery is arguably the best receiver in the country and Marcus Lattimore looks to compete for the Heisman trophy. The only problem is the team is very aware of their hype. Their collective ego may get in the way of success.

1925 • 1926 • 1930 • 1934 • 1941 • 1961 • 1964 • 1965 • 1973 • 1978 • 1979 • 1992 • 2009 - NATIONAL CHAMPIONS |


Crimson Extras

Marrs Field Poets Hold Your Horses, Here Come the Elephants

By: Micah Phillips

Photography Credit to

Gridiron Grub recipe of the week:



1 pound ground chicken 1 egg ½ cup bread crumbs 1 tablespoon grated lemon peel, yellow portion only 1 teaspoon chopped fresh black pepper 1 garlic, minced Pinch hot red chili flakes 1 tablespoon olive oil 1 onion, cut into 4 thick slices 1 red pepper, halved 4 large arugula or lettuce 2 tablespoons mustard 2 tablespoons mayonnaise 4 focaccia or Kaiser buns


In a large bowl, combine ground chicken with egg, bread crumbs, lemon peel, rosemary, salt, pepper, garlic and red chili flakes. Shape into 4 burgers about 1/2-inch thick. Refrigerate until ready to cook. Brush burgers and onion slices with olive oil. Grill burgers 4 minutes per side. Grill onion slices 2 to 3 minutes per side. Grill peppers, skin side only, about 5 minutes or until charred. Rub skin off. Place burgers on bottom halves of buns, top with onions, peppers and arugula. Combine mustard and mayonnaise, spread on top and set it in place. Recipe serves 4. 28

| Fall 2011

Hold your horses,   the elephants are coming Dixie's football pride A thin red line    washing down the field like ocean waves Hold your horses, boys, Here come the elephants The helmet wears a 12;    the walk of champions waits for fourteen. Hold your horses,    the elephants are coming. The call goes out from the faithful,    crying "Roll Tide" into autumn afternoons. Hold your horses,    the elephants are coming. So when your seat begins to rumble    and the game's about to begin,    fear not, 'Bama fan. Just hold your horses    because the elephants are coming. If you would like to see your football-themed poem in Touchdown Alabama Magazine feel free to send in your poetry piece. Chosen submissions will receive a $25 Barnes & Noble gift card so include contact information with your poem. You can email your submission to managingeditor@ or mail your submission to: Touchdown Alabama Magazine, P.O. Box 3251, Tuscaloosa, AL 35403-3251.

11 Facts About Magazines 1

Magazine readership has grown over the past five years. (Source: MRI)


Average paid subscriptions reached nearly 300 million in 2009. (Source: MPA estimates based on ABC first and second half 2009 data)


4 out of 5 adults read magazines. (Source: MRI)


Magazines deliver more ad impressions than TV or Web in half-hour period. (Source: McPheters & Company)


Magazine readership in the 18 to 34 segment is growing. (Source: MRI)


Since Facebook was founded, magazines gained more than one million young adult readers. (Source: MRI)


The average reader spends 43 minutes reading each issue. (Source: MRI)


Magazines are the No. 1 medium of engagement — across all dimensions measured. Simmons’ Multi-Media Engagement Study find magazines continue to score significantly higher than TV or the Internet in ad receptivity and all of the other engagement dimensions, including “trustworthy” and “inspirational.” (Source: Simmons Multi-Media Engagement Study)


Magazines and magazine ads garner the most attention: BIGresearch studies show that when consumers read magazines they are much less likely to engage with other media or to take part in non-media activities compared to the users of TV, radio or the Internet. (Source: BIGresearch Simultaneous Media Usage Study)


Magazines outperform other media in driving positive shifts in purchase consideration/intent. (Source: Dynamic Logic)


Magazines rank No. 1 at influencing consumers to start a search online – higher than newer media options. (Source: BIGresearch Simultaneous Media Usage Study)

Section Title Recruit of the Week

Early bird gets early playtime Hard work, determination benefit

Beniquez Brown By: John McWilliams


ou can find most teenage boys sleeping at 6 a.m. during the summer, but not Beniquez Brown. He has work to do. The 6-foot-2, 210-pound senior from Florence, Ala., wakes up early to improve his leg strength. Last year, Brown ran the 40-yard dash in 4.5 seconds. This year, he was determined to run a faster 40-yard dash, and so he did. Brown now boasts a 4.39-second 40-yard dash. Brown, a three-star athlete, has offers from Alabama, Arkansas, Auburn, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi State, Tennessee and Vanderbilt. He said his top three are Alabama, Mississippi State and Florida. “I’m really comfortable at Alabama,” Brown said. “The school is only two hours away, and it’s so close to home. I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve been down there. It’s a great place and the academics are really nice too. “I’d have to say the coaching staff is the best part of Alabama though. Coach Mike Groh and coach [Nick] Saban have been talking to me a lot about how, if I come in early and work, I’ll get early playing time.” Brown is a jack-of-all-trades player. He has played quarterback, running back, wide receiver and safety for Florence High School. He said Alabama talked to him about playing safety or wide receiver. “It doesn’t matter where I play,” Brown said. “I’ll come up and hit somebody on defense or run them over on


| Fall 2011

offense, it doesn’t matter to me. “I like the SEC better than any other conference. There’s no question that the best players play in the SEC. I think I’m able to play with those guys. I want to play for the best and show people where I belong.” Brown said he leads by example on the football field. “Coaches tell me that whatever I do, other players are watching,” he said. “I can’t take a play off because if I do, other guys will think it’s OK because I did it. I have to go hard 100 percent. My goal is to be the best player to ever put on a Florence Falcons uniform.” Alabama commitment, four-star linebacker Reggie Ragland, has developed a friendship with Brown and is attempting to get Brown to commit to the Tide. “Reggie and I are good friends,” Brown said. “I think it’s important to have friends who are going through the same things you are. Reggie is always telling me how he wants me to play at Alabama with him.” Brown doesn’t know when he will commit. He said that while he likes Alabama, his cousin and teammate, Kivon Coman, wants to play at Mississippi State. “My cousin and I are close,” Brown said. “We’ve always talked about playing

on the same team and doing everything together, that’s why [Mississippi] State is high on my list, but I’m going to do what’s best for me.”


Tide Trivia



What was Bear Bryant’s record in his first season at Alabama? A. 3-7 B. 5-4-1 C. 7-2 D. 8-2

#2 Bear Bryant won__________ consecu

tive home games at Bryant-Denny Stadium from October 26, 1963, to November 13, 1982. A. 32 B. 48 C. 57 D. 62

#3 What was Alabama’s record in 2007,

Nick Saban’s first season? A. 6-7 B. 7-6 C. 8-5 D. 9-4

#4 Saban’s first loss, in overtime, came in

2007 against which team? A. Arkansas B. Florida State C. Houston D. Georgia

#5 Bear Bryant famously said he

Answers: 1. B | 2. C | 3. B | 4. D | 5. B

returned to his alma mater to coach because he_______________. A. “missed mama’s cooking” B. “heard mama calling” C. “had to get out of Texas” D. “knew it was time”

Section Title

Ready for the 2011 Season? YES! Send me Touchdown Alabama Magazine

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1925 • 1926 • 1930 • 1934 • 1941 • 1961 • 1964 • 1965 • 1973 • 1978 • 1979 • 1992 • 2009 - NATIONAL CHAMPIONS |



Q ’s & Q’s A’s

By: Mike Lacy

Kerry Goode


erry Goode was the star running back on Hazelwood’s 1982 high school state championship team. Goode was picked by Ray Perkins first recruiting class and by midseason broke through as a starting running back for the Crimson Tide as a freshman. In 1984 Goode was a Heisman candidate. During the game against Boston College, he amassed three catches for 32 yards and a TD reception for 18 yards in the first half. He also had a second-half kickoff return for 99 yards. His total for kickoff returns for the game was 199 yards. The Crimson Tide was leading 31-14 when Goode went down with a torn ACL. It was a season-ending injury. Goode’s best playing days were behind him. Goode did get a shot at the NFL with Tampa Bay, but another knee injury ended his career as a football player. I got a chance to reflect with Kerry Goode about his playing days as a student-athlete at the Capstone.

TAM (Touchdown Alabama Magazine): Touted as a high recruit in high school, why did you choose University of Alabama? KG (Kerry Goode): I chose Alabama because of the tradition, the history of winning and I could remain at home…the best of all situations.


| Fall 2011

TAM: How has playing for Alabama made who you are today? KG:

Playing football teaches you so much about life. You win some, you lose some. It’s the same in life. One day you’re winning, the next day you’re getting your butt handed to you. Playing at Bama takes it a step further… you’re expected to win and everyone’s gunning for you. Therefore, you’ve got to have a little bit extra in the tank. It taught me how to fight hard when times get tough.

TAM: Are you still close to your Tide teammates? KG: When you go

through some of the things we did, you can’t help but be close. Even when you don’t see them in years, you can pick up like it was yesterday. Playing at Bama gives you a special bond with guys that never played with you, maybe before or after, but you still share the closeness.

TAM: In five words, what was your experience at University of Alabama? KG: Fabulous, Exciting, Tough, Educational, Unforgettable! TAM: As a running back from your formidable years through your young

adult years, do you have any insight as to why Glenn Coffee may have retired from the NFL just after one season? KG: When I was in training camp with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, I came to the point where I said to myself, “If I don’t make the squad, I’m okay with it,” meaning, I’d given 110% of me and football had taken a lot from me. I could look in the mirror and be okay with the decision. Football is a game, if you don’t absolutely love it, you will not survive it. At the professional level it’s more than a game. It’s your job, and most of the fun doing it is on game day. The other six days can be brutal. You have to love it to stay in it. People see Sundays and think it’s the best thing in the world, but I’m here to tell you there are six other days that are not as glamorous. TAM: In all of your days of playing football, what coach taught you more about life than football? KG: Al Miller was and is my favorite. He taught me how to work and stay focused on the task. He preached all the things that Coach Bryant taught, always tying football to life and giving examples.

TAM: What fear you have overcome since your college days? KG: I overcame not being able to play football… I either played or coached for 35 seasons of my life. Moving on without football was tough because of the bonds you make and share in the game. That’s what most guys miss when you’re no longer in the locker room. TAM: Can you reflect your emotions when you played Boston College? KG: That was a dream and a nightmare all in one game.

It’s made me the person I am today. It taught me to enjoy the moment because you never know what’s coming up next.

TAM: Looking back, what has been the biggest change in college football from your playing days? KG: Size and

speed seem to continue to improve each year. We were bigger than the guys that played before us and players after my time seem to be much bigger.

TAM: What do you think Alabama’s chances are to repeat as the BCS National Champions? KG: When you

have the talent level that Alabama has…the chance to repeat becomes a little more favorable.

TAM: What college pranks were you involved in that still make you and your friends laugh today? KG: The good stuff I can tell…I TAM: What’s the last book you read? KG:The Missing

never pulled pranks…wink wink…Shooting bottle rockets under doors, pennying people in their rooms, leaning water-filled trash cans against teammates’ doors…

Ring by Keith Dunnavant and Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man by Steve Harvey.

TAM: As a family, how was it to have a pipeline of siblings play at Alabama? KG: We played football from the age of six all the way

TAM: What’s on your bucket list? KG: To visit every state

through high school together. Moving on to Alabama seemed, at the time, like a natural thing. At that time, it didn’t seem like a big deal, because we didn’t know any other way. As we’ve gotten older, it’s become very special to us.

in the U.S. and attend every major college football stadium. Next up is Texas stadium…Jerry’s world.

Catching Up With

Catching Up With

Martin Houston

Fullback Turned Preacher Dr. Donald F. Staffo


he Crimson Tide’s last national championship, before the 2009 season, was in 1992. Martin Houston was the fullback on that ’92 national championship team. Today, Houston, after a brief stint in the NFL with the Pittsburgh Steelers and a short career as a manager with BellSouth/AT&T Inc., is Director of Public Relations and a spiritual leader with PraiseFest Ministries. He is also the lead pastor of Catalyst Community Church. Also a public speaker, Houston, in a talk to the Tuscaloosa Quarterback Club entitled “The Return to Prominence,” shared his five-step philosophy to success by relating Bama’s climb back to the top of the football mountain. “The first step is that you have to have a plan, a clear vision and direction for the future,” stated Houston, who also played on SEC Championship teams in 1989 and 1992 and rushed for over 1,000 yards with the Crimson Tide. “You have to know what you want, and how you’re going to get there.” Houston believes Crimson Tide athletic director Mal Moore had a plan to get Alabama through the tough times the program experienced prior to the arrival of Nick Saban. “This


| Fall 2011

Photography Credit to Bryant Museum

[1997 through 2006] was a down time in Alabama football, and I think that Mal Moore believed that Nick Saban was the coach that could get us through that, and he was going to go after Saban. “Step two is perspective,” explained Houston. “Even though we had just gotten beat by Florida 35-0 and were two games removed from the ‘The Fiasco Bowl’ [a 34-7 loss to Louisville in the 1991 Fiesta Bowl], we were still Alabama. We had a players’ meeting in which we stated, ‘We’re Alabama, so let’s play like Alabama. The tradition says it can be done, so let’s go out and do it.’ From that point on we won 28 straight games, 23 when I played, and five more after I graduated.” Houston said the third thing is dealing with pressure. “It can make you or break you. When you’re down, part of that pressure comes from resistance. You can either fold up shop, or get stronger because of the resistance.” “In 1992 throughout the season [critics] were saying we were the worst 5-0 team in the country, the worst 7-0 team in the country, the worst 10-0 team in the country. But after we won the national championship Coach [Gene] Stallings stated, ‘We may be the worst 13-0 team in the country, but we’re the only 13-0 team.’ “You also have to be able to overcome adversity, like last season’s team did against Arkansas. Beating Arkansas helped us beat

Florida because the team knew what it meant to fight back. When you’re pressured and squeezed, the potential will come out.” The fourth step is the process. “That simply means that you have to stay the course. You can’t abandon your plan when the going gets tough. Mal Moore refused to give up in trying to get Saban to come here.” Houston then used Saban as another example of sticking to his plan and his well-documented process. “People forget that a few years ago we got beat by Louisiana-Monroe. People forget that Saban only won six games his first year here. But Coach Saban adjusted,” said Houston. “He had a plan, stuck to his plan, and didn’t let resistance or adversity stop him from following and working his plan.” Houston said that you can have all of the above, but you still need the people to pull it off. “You have to have the right people, in the right place, making the right decisions at the right time,” he said. “We’ve got a great coach, a great coaching staff, great players and great supporters of the program. Most programs could not have weathered what happened to Alabama [NCAA sanctions and other on and off-the field problems] during the down years. Alabama was down, and we came back to prominence,” Houston said in concluding his message.



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The Process

Deciding to

Roll with the Tide

By: Mike Parker

The next big name that has come along for the Class of 2012 is Wide Receiver Chris Black


labama’s Class of 2012 is shaping up to look much like the past four classes, which means a lot of diversity, power, toughness, speed and big guys. Since Nick Saban arrived in Tuscaloosa, his recruiting has been more than phenomenal. He has turned Tuscaloosa into a powerhouse, winning a national championship in his third year, which has enhanced Alabama’s ability to successfully recruit. Now, with the revamped coaching staff, including Chris Rumph, defensive line coach, Jeff Stoutland, offensive line coach, and especially Jeremy Pruitt, the defensive back coach who has turned out to be an outstanding recruiter, look for the Tide to continue to successfully put in place for the future the best players for Nick Saban’s system. The next big name that has come along for the Class of 2012 is Wide Receiver Chris Black. If you have not heard much about him yet, read on. Though Black is no Julio Jones or Alshon Jeffery, he does have a resemblance to Percy Harvin, the sensational athlete who helped Florida win a national championship. With offers from all over the country, including Miami, Georgia, Florida, Florida State, and even


| Fall 2011

Notre Dame, Black was a highly desirable commodity. The fight for this wide receiver came to a dog fight between Florida State and Alabama; the Crimson Tide won that big battle. Much of the credit for landing this sought-after player should go to Jeremy Pruitt, who spent a considerable amount of time recruiting Black. “Although Coach Pruitt coaches on the defensive side of the ball, we built a great relationship,” Black said. “He made me feel at home anytime I took a visit there and constantly was there for me to talk with him about anything. The thing with the Alabama staff was that as a whole I felt I knew the staff really well and I didn’t have that anywhere else. That’s nothing against the other coaches for different schools because they were all great, but that’s something I noticed about Alabama.” Black’s commitment to the Tide is huge and should not be overlooked. Even though he is currently about 6 feet even, 175 pounds, Black’s intangibles are what make him great and why he has been on the Tide’s hotlist ever since his first visit to Alabama. He is an extremely versatile, Continues on pg 38 do-it-all type of player. He is Photography Credit to

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Pro Connections

Tuscaloosa's Tide to Buffalo's Bills

The outlook of Marcell Dareus

By: Stephen M. Smith


irmingham native Marcell Dareus stepped onto the field at BryantDenny Stadium in 2008 as a freshman. At Huffman High School, Dareus made a name for himself as a gifted defensive lineman. He totaled 117 tackles and 20 sacks as a senior and returned a fumble for a touchdown. He was listed on the Atlanta Journal-Constitution's Super Southern 100, as well as the Mobile Press-Register’s Elite 18. Considered a three-star recruit by, Dareus was listed as the No. 28 defensive tackle prospect in the class of 2008. He was also ranked the No. 17 overall player on the Alabama Top 35 list. Dareus chose Alabama over scholarship offers from Auburn, North Carolina and Tennessee. He continued this success during his first year at the Capstone, when he became one of the main defensive linemen for the Tide. Throughout his career at The University of Alabama, Dareus gave it his all. He consistently sacked opposing quarterbacks, forced and recovered fumbles and made big time tackles. He and teammate Terrence Cody were a defensive tandem that gave the opposition fits every


| Fall 2011

game. He was highly recognized and awarded throughout his collegiate career with the Tide. Dareus finished 8th in the Southeastern Conference and ranked tied for 90th nationally with 6.5 sacks per game. He was also the 2010 BCS National Championship Defensive MVP. Perhaps one of his greatest successes is being a consistent member of the 2009 team that won both the SEC and the BCS championship games. In the 2010 BCS National Championship Game, Dareus made his mark on history by making the two biggest plays of the game. The first one was his big sack of Colt McCoy, which injured him for the entire game. The second one was a work of art, elusiveness and skill as he intercepted a pass from Garret Gillbert and eluded three tacklers on his journey to the end zone. He also led the Tide defense in a win against Michigan State in the 2011 Capital One Bowl. As the saying goes,” People come and people go.” Dareus’s career at UA ended after the 2010 season. Dareus decided to forgo his senior season at Alabama and declare his eligibility for the NFL Draft. At

the time of his announcement, Dareus was projected as a first round pick. He was selected 3rd overall in the 1st round of the 2011 NFL Draft by the Buffalo Bills. A day after the first round picks were chosen the Bills announced that Dareus would wear the jersey number 99. Head coach Nick Saban recollects on the player’s time with the Tide and his thoughts on Dareus’s future as a Buffalo Bills defensive tackle. “He has represented the University of Alabama in a first class way and I am sure he is going to represent the Buffalo Bills in the same way,” Saban said. “He is a quality character guy that has a lot of physical ability and talent." On July 29, 2011, he signed a 4-year deal with the Bills worth $20.4 million. With Coach Saban’s motivation and the Tide’s support the only question now is “Can he be a winner in Buffalo?”



R ecruiti ng Serv ices:

A Match Made in Heaven?

By: Thomas Watts


ecruiting services have been making negative headlines in the sports world recently. There is some confusion about what exactly these recruiting services are and what they do. It isn’t fair to paint all services with the same brush. Some “scouts” attempt to exert their influence to get prospects to go to a certain school. As with most things, there are good and bad sides. There are scouts accused of wrongdoing and on the other side there are scouts who honestly have the best interest of the high school athlete at heart. Where did these scouting services come from? The short answer is that, they’ve always existed in one form or another. High school coaches traditionally made highlight tapes and sent them to schools in an attempt to promote athletes. As recruiting has exploded, and turned into a major industry, services came to the fore. In major college athletics, many coaches are just as interested in the character of a recruit as they are in how many reps they can bench, or how fast they run a 40-yard dash. The legitimate, legal services try to

provide this snapshot of a recruit. They exist to help college coaches sift through the thousands of recruits now receiving publicity thanks to websites such as and There is nothing wrong with colleges contracting out for scouting services, or access to a database of recruits if all rules are abided. According to a report from The Birmingham News, The University of Alabama spent $218,628 on recruiting services such as these from 2008-2010. The legitimate recruiting services exist to promote high school athletes. The services that provides headaches, not only to football programs but to the NCAA as well, seek to use a relationship with a high school athlete for profit. Recruiting services have changed the face of college athletics. They provide more detail then ever before and help high school athletes get scholarships that they would not have had an opportunity to receive in the past. Unfortunately, there are some people who choose to try to abuse this new, excellent idea for their own personal gain.

“It isn’t fair to paint all services with the same brush.” 42

| Fall 2011

Anthony & Co.


dreams do come true!®

180 Main Street Hoover, AL 35244

Continued from pg 38 used on special teams, reverses, quick screens, long balls and even out of the back field. What really stands out, to recruiters and recruiting analysts alike, is Black’s speed and acceleration. He is a player who does not need any space to make a play; he just manages to make them. Not easily brought down, he also has tremendous hands and is gifted at separating himself from defensive backs. Black is the type of player who can take a screen that starts on the right side of the field, then zigzag his way to the left all the way down the field for a touchdown. Lastly, Black has incredible vision. He sees holes in the defense and uses those opportunities to make a play. Black is just the newest addition to a sensational crop of talent that Coach Saban has brought in to the ranks of the Crimson Tide. Some other names you might recognize who will be analyzed in future editions of Touchdown Alabama Magazine include at the head of the class is as follows: • Eddie Williams, DB, 6’3”, 200 lbs • Kenyon Drake, athlete, 6’1”, 195 lbs • Darren Lake, DT, 6’3”, 330 lbs • Dillon Lee, LB, 6’4”, 220 lbs • Reggie Ragland, LB, 6’4”, 245 lbs • Justin Thomas, athlete, 5’11”, 175 lbs

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| Fall 2011 the


1925 • 1926 • 1930 • 1934 • 1941 • 1961 • 1964 • 1965 • 1973 • 1978 • 1979 • 1992 • 2009 - NATIONAL CHAMPIONS |


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