Monday, April 9, 2012

Monday links: all this and Shaq, too

A baseball season that was pretty well guaranteed to be a lost one for Alabama somehow sprang to life this weekend — the Tide swept three games from a pretty good Auburn team, winning 10-6, 4-3 and 6-2. The highlight, of course, was the Saturday game.
Missing from that reel: the batter before Dugas, who gave the Tide a shot by beating out what would've been a game-ending double play, extending the game by one more at-bat. It's probably nothing in the grand scheme of things — Alabama travels to LSU this weekend — but at least the squad has some life in it. For now.

— For no reason, here's a trailer for the 2012 football season.
While we're here, let us cover the team's second scrimmage,  held — as always — where no one could see it. Based on the stats that were released for our benefit — which are probably accurate, right? — Jalston Fowler played well. Good for him. As Cecil points out, the issue with coach Saban continues to be improvement. In retrospect, the talk about the 2010 team is interesting: it seemed as though that squad coasted for much of the season and didn't have an identity ... but it did win 10 games, and the 3 losses were by a combined 17 points against other 10-win teams. The squad didn't fall apart — it just wasn't quite the '09 team.
(One other note: According to this leaked memo, we may be inching ever closer to the "plus-one" playoff format. Eventually. At this point, it's like a sign for a new restaurant that says "coming soon," only it's been there for like 6 months and no one pays attention anymore.)

— A lesser headline from late last week: the basketball team lost Tony Mitchell and Charles Hankerson for 2013. Mitchell wasn't a huge shock; Hankerson is somewhat surprising, but not a huge loss on the floor. Maybe the bigger headline is that coach Anthony Grant has been recruiting for three years and has apparently signed two busts in that time. Or that the Basketball Blog guys appear to have declared him New Gottfried. Ouch.
— Remember when Alabama's softball coach went to coach LSU for like a day? LSU was in town this weekend and lost 2 of 3, the finale of which was a one-hitter where the Tigers couldn't hit the ball out of the infield. Yeah.
It was a big sports weekend in Tuscaloosa under any circumstances. And then Shaquille O'Neal showed up for some reason.

— Bubba Watson continues the ESSEESEE dominance by winning The Masters; Auburn has a crowded backfield; and the Braves are still losing.

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