Alabama's head coach Saban instructs his players as they take on the LSU Tigers during their NCAA football game in Baton Rouge

Eight years later, Alabama will be ready for ULM in 2015


In 2015 Alabama will finally get a chance to score some revenge for one of the more embarrassing losses of Nick Saban’s career since arriving in Tuscaloosa. No, Oklahoma is not dropping on the schedule and I am not referring to Auburn. Louisiana Monroe will return to Bryant Denny Stadium on September 26, 2015 in hopes of winning their second straight game in Tuscaloosa.

Tide Sports reports Alabama and Louisiana Monroe have agreed to the 2015 game. The last time ULM visited Alabama was in 2007, Saban’s first year as head coach. ULM left with a 21-14 upset of Alabama, which at the time had many thinking Saban’s return to the college game was not going to go as smoothly as anticipated. A lot has changed since then.

Alabama has won three BCS championships since 2007, and had a decent shot at playing for a fourth this past season. ULM has given some SEC teams a scare in recent years, but they have usually played the role of decisive underdog as scripted. In 2012 the WarHawks topped Arkansas in overtime and nearly did the same to Auburn a week later before losing in overtime.

Alabama was early in their development under Saban the last time they played. It is probably a safe bet ULM will not be able to catch Alabama by surprise in 2015.

Former Texas A&M WR Thomas Johnson arrested on murder charge

Thomas Johnson
Associated Press

A very disturbing story has emerged out of Dallas, where former Texas A&M wide receiver Thomas Johnson sits in a Dallas County jail cell after allegedly admitting to hacking an unsuspecting jogger to death with a machete.

Just before 8 a.m. Monday, authorities say Johnson went to White Rock Creek Trail, a popular jogging trail in northeast Dallas, and randomly slashed a jogger to death. “It appears Mr. Johnson picked this victim at random. Absolutely random,” Deputy Chief Rob Sherwin told the Dallas Morning News. “He just attacked him. … It’s just very unusual. It’s quite shocking.”

Johnson then walked away from the scene in search of a cell phone. An onlooker had already dialed 911, and when police arrived Johnson allegedly told them there was a man “laying down with a sword in his head and not moving.”

“I just committed capital murder,” Johnson said and then repeated, according to his arrest affidavit. The only motive police reported was that Johnson was angry at his situation in life at the time of the slaying.

The victim, an unidentified male between the age of 25 and 35, passed away at a nearby hospital.

Johnson, meanwhile, remains in a Dallas County jail in lieu of $500,000 bail.

Johnson was a highly-regarded member of Kevin Sumlin‘s first recruiting class at Texas A&M. As a true freshman in 2012, the Dallas native caught 30 passes for 339 yards and one touchdown through the Aggies’ upset of then-No. 1 Alabama and then simply… disappeared. He went missing for three days in November 2012 before turning up back home in Dallas. His mother told the San Antonio Express-News last April Johnson would like to return to college football, but a return to the game never materialized.

No punishment from SEC for Bielema’s sideline interaction with Alabama player

Bret Bielema

Arkansas head coach Bret Bielema will not be disciplined by the SEC office for his brief interaction with Alabama offensive lineman Cam Robinson last weekend. A video showing Bielema exaggerating his interaction with Robinson at the end of a play was reviewed by SEC commissioner Greg Sankey, and the commissioner has discussed the situation with the Razorbacks coach.

“I visited with Bret over the phone on Monday and we discussed the play that has now become widely reviewed through a brief video clip,” Sankey said in a released statement. “Football is played in an intense competitive environment and I reminded him of the need for head coaches to resolve with their own players issues that may arise, which was his intent. The unsportsmanlike penalty assessed on the play was not directly associated with Bret’s efforts to intervene at the end of the play and we are moving forward in a positive manner.”

That appears to be the end of the discussion regarding Bielema’s act. I personally think there should have been some more done here by the league’s commissioner, but we will see if Bielema avoids putting himself in a similar position moving forward.