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Saban still not ready to pull trigger on naming QB starter

In our Fifth Quarter review of all — well, most.  OK, some — the season-opening highs, lows and everything in between, I made the case that AJ McCarron showed enough in Alabama’s win over Kent State to be named as the starter over Phillip Sims heading into the Penn State game this weekend.

Nick Saban, however, is not ready to make that leap quite yet.

The Tide head coach addressed his quarterback situation Monday and, as has been the case since way back in spring practice, he sidestepped questions about a starter at the position.  He did allow, though, that a starter could be named later in the week.  Maybe.

“I know you’re going to ask me about the quarterback situation,” Saban said in quotes distributed by the team. “We’re going to continue to develop both of the quarterbacks that we have. We’re not going to name a starting quarterback today. Later in the week, as we see how the two guys practice, we’ll make a determination as to which guy will give us the best opportunity in this particular game, or if there’s some combination of the two that would be helpful and useful to us, we’ll look at the option of doing that.

“I think the most important thing that we want to focus on with both quarterbacks is what do we need to do to play as well as you’re capable of playing, and continue to improve and work through, with both guys, the importance of doing the little things right and the fundamental things right so that you can play the way you are capable of playing. I think both guys are capable of playing better than they did, not that we’re disappointed in either one of them, but we still feel like we have two really good players at that position and both of those guys will continue to develop and help us somewhere down the road.”

Of course, the media continued to press Saban on the QB situation.  And, of course, Saban didn’t appreciate being pressed.

“Well that’s a hypothetical question,” the coach said. “We know where we are playing this week; we know what it’s like to play there. We have played there before, and we know what our quarterback situation is. I’ve already addressed that.”

McCarron was the official starter for the opener, but the reps for both players were split fairly evenly.  Based on the way the two performed Saturday, we’d expect McCarron to be the starter yet again.  And, unlike like last week, take the majority of the reps over the course of the game.

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14 Responses to “Saban still not ready to pull trigger on naming QB starter”
  1. Spencer says: Sep 6, 2011 7:13 AM

    Sims should have known better than to go to Alabama looking for a starting job, quite frankly. That’s all I’m going to say. Good luck with that transfer!

  2. rolltider says: Sep 6, 2011 9:40 AM

    @Spencer,

    No place for racism here. You absolutely know nothing about what you are talking about. If you had watched the game, you wouldn’t be making the racial insinuations that you are. Saban plays the best players…..period.

    And for what it’s worth, Andrew Zow is laughing at you!

  3. polegojim says: Sep 6, 2011 10:31 AM

    As with Notre Dame – I don’t get the mentality of not solidifying your game plan 3 days before a game.

    Seems like a silly mental game Coach Saban. What do you possibly hope to gain?

    Make the best decision you can, and give the team the stability it deserves.

  4. southernpatriots says: Sep 6, 2011 12:02 PM

    Don’t know Saban’s reasons, just know he is a pre-eminent college football coach. Don’t know the particulars which Saban would know, so I trust his ability to decide what is best for his squad. We hope Bama is undefeated until after the game on Nov. 5th.

    God bless Tuscaloosa which is now getting the rain and winds from Lee that flooded south Louisiana.

  5. Deb says: Sep 6, 2011 12:09 PM

    @Spencer …

    Bigots are people who make idiotic and ignorant generalizations about groups of individuals that have no basis in fact. Congratulations on identifying yourself as a bigot.

    Dislike Alabama if you want, but leave the ghosts of history in the past where they belong. The Tide is blessed because both Sims and McCarron are fine quarterbacks, and Saban will start the best performer, which appears to be McCarron. Are you saying John Taylor is a bigot because he thinks McCarron is the better QB?

    If you knew anything about Tide fans, you’d know we adore our players regardless of their race. You’re the only one here preoccupied with skin color.

  6. Deb says: Sep 6, 2011 12:11 PM

    @southernpatriots …

    Nice to see you back!!

  7. southernpatriots says: Sep 6, 2011 12:18 PM

    Deb: Thank you. It was a great trip, great adventure and great entertainment, etc. but we ALL are so glad to be back home and our homes did not flood….whew! Thank the Lord!

    We are going to try to get our thoughts together and post the incredible story we lived while in the greater Dallas area. Great tailgating food, great fans, surprising game, though hoped for results.

  8. polegojim says: Sep 6, 2011 1:25 PM

    @SouthPats – glad you made it back safe.

    Wish we could send some of that rain over Texas. The current horrific magnitude of catastrophic imbalance is incredible.

  9. abrellbama says: Sep 6, 2011 3:26 PM

    I certainly do hope both Alabama and LSU are undefeated going into the game on 11/5 and then Bama proves to the nation, that they are better than LSU, and beats them soundly. Right now, both teams have offensive issues and great defenses. Hopefully, by 11/5, Bama’s offense will be playing on all cylinders with one QB.

  10. salmon88 says: Sep 6, 2011 4:58 PM

    Spencer, with your comment you just called Saban a racist, Sims an idiot for coming to Bama, and the remainder of the team the same. I will assume that you are some elitist who has never strayed from the New York Time’s editorial section and will forever be enslaved in your progressive, losing mentality. You are the one who will be kept in slavery with your comments and bigoted views. You are to be pitied.

  11. Spencer says: Sep 6, 2011 4:59 PM

    @rolltider I did watch the game, actually. I don’t think either QB looked very sharp and I’m not surprised Saban has dragged the competition on for so long. I didn’t say anything about racism. It’s interesting people made that assumption, though.

    @Deb Ghosts of history, really? You mean like the “history” reaching as far back as… last February when UpdykeA had yet another racial incident blow up on campus when a black student had racial slurs screamed in his direction while walking past a frat house? And I do know quite a bit about Tide fans, which is one of many reasons I’m not one. I didn’t call anyone a bigot but you did.

  12. rolltider says: Sep 6, 2011 6:16 PM

    @Spencer

    Your quote sir:

    “Sims should have known better than to go to Alabama looking for a starting job, quite frankly. That’s all I’m going to say. Good luck with that transfer!”

    I am only going by what you wrote. Nothing written there is remotely in the ballpark of:

    “I don’t think either QB looked very sharp and I’m not surprised Saban has dragged the competition on for so long.”

    You specifically pointed out Sims. I did not. It’s going to be a rough year at the QB position for Bama. Anyone who thought otherwise is delusional. Bama has not won anything yet. Neither has any other school. But to SINGLE OUT Sims in the manner that you did certainly makes it appear as though you were blaming the fact that he was at Alabama for not getting the starting job, not the lack of his on-field accomplishments. Connecting those dots does not take a Harvard degree.

    But let’s be clear, I made no assumptions. I simply went by what you wrote. Let’s not get into insulting anyone’s intelligence. Your two comments could not be any further apart if one was a Bama fan and one was an Auburn fan.

  13. Deb says: Sep 6, 2011 10:06 PM

    @Spencer …

    Every community–North, South, East, West–has bigots. That’s no reason to label an entire region, city, fan base, or coaching staff as you did. You can go anywhere and find some idiot shouting bigoted slurs.

    I found you right here.

  14. shawnp82 says: Sep 7, 2011 4:02 AM

    I have lived in the north and in the south and from my experiences there is more racism in the north than there is here, it’s sad that people think that what happened 50 years ago has anything to do with what is going on now. Mccarron did seem to be the better QB but i know Sims wasn’t playing to his full potential and i’m pretty sure Saban knows that too which is why he hasn’t named a starter

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