Tide resist looking ahead
TUSCALOOSA — If Alabama keeps winning and remains No. 1 in the nation, ESPN college football analyst Kirk Herbstreit said he knows exactly why that will happen: Tide head coach Nick Saban.
"The biggest challenge for Alabama is the culture created from success, and Nick Saban is ahead of the curve in combating that," Herbstreit said this morning on an ESPN conference call with reporters.
Herbstreit said Alabama appears not to have gotten caught looking ahead, especially after the big season-opening win over Michigan 41-14.
"That's a dangerous place for a team to be, but to Alabama's credit, they've been machine like," Herbstreit said. "I give them a standing ovation for what they've done, because in the next two weeks when they go to Missouri, to Tennessee and Mississippi State at home, the media and fans are going to say, ‘Ahh, they'll win by 30.'
"The players continue to listen to their coach and practice against perfection. The challenge of the game for them is in the mirror."
Mrs. Barker will sing anthem
Country singer Sara Evans might have split loyalties Saturday when she sings the national anthem before Alabama's game at Missouri on Saturday. Evans married former Alabama quarterback Jay Barker in 2008, and they live in Mountain Brook.
But she also has strong ties to Missouri. She was born in Missouri in 1971 and lived there until moving to Nashville in 1991. From age 16 to 18, she sang at a club near Columbia, Mo., which is the home of the University of Missouri.
The Missouri media relations department has published a news release about Evans singing the national anthem, but left out the part about being married to Barker.
She sang the national anthem before the Crimson Tide's 2008 home win over Auburn, wearing a No. 7 jersey (Barker's number at Alabama) with "Mrs. Barker" along the shoulders on the back.
Wisconsin athletics director Barry Alvarez said Monday it's possible his Badgers could play Alabama in 2015.
"I can't announce anything, but we're still talking about playing the game," Alvarez told the New Horizons Credit Union 1st and 10 Club during a speaking engagement there, according to al.com. "We haven't signed anything, but we are in discussion."
Alabama coach Nick Saban has said he likes facing a name opponent in the first or second game of the season. The Crimson Tide has played Clemson (2008), Virginia Tech (2009), Penn State (2010 and 2011) and Michigan (2012) early in the season. Alabama will kick off next season against Virginia Tech in Atlanta.