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There have been a few names kicked around recently in articles on other sites and I wanted to give kind of a brief overview of those, what to expect if any of them were hired and what I think the odds would be if I was trying to handicap it.
Short-time Alabama offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian has agreed to terms with the Atlanta Falcons to replace Kyle Shanahan, who became the San Francisco 49ers head coach on Monday.
Sometimes, a headline says it all without the need for additional commentary: On paper, Alabama signed the highest-rated class since TideFans.com/NARCAS started tracking classes 20 years ago. The 2012 and 2015 classes both recorded average scores of 9.86, setting a bar few people thought even Nick Saban could break. But the 2017 class did just that, finishing with an average score of 9.9 (9.904, to be precise) among 25 prospects signed (TideFans.com/NARCAS does not rate specialists, so LS Thomas Fletcher was not included in the class score).
Alabama Analysis: For maybe the first time ever, the conference leader didn’t get “excellent” ratings in both Total Talent Level and Needs Filled. Alabama struck out in cornerback recruiting, a sin serious enough to draw a mention from Nick Saban himself in post-Signing Day press conferences.
Alabama mostly met expectations this year, in regards to what kind of team it put on the field. In respect to what it accomplished, Alabama probably exceeded expectations. TideFans.com projected Alabama to capture the No. 3 seed in the College Football Playoff (behind No. 1 Ohio State, No. 2 Oklahoma and ahead of No. 4 Clemson), but with a regular-season loss to LSU in the mix. When LSU overreacted to an early losses to Wisconsin and Auburn, though, and fired Les Miles, the chances of LSU beating Alabama mostly evaporated.
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Alabama’s bid to win a second straight national championship fell short thanks to a combination of injuries, a lack of depth on its defensive line that finally came to a head and the struggles of a true freshman quarterback who seemed to run out of gas a bit down the season’s stretch.
The same dynamic exists this year as last: Clemson will use a talented dual-threat quarterback to trigger an offense that has its roots in spread football and tinted by pro-set alterations, while Alabama will base from a multiple, pro-style attack that has been dabbling with the spread.
Disclaimer: This is not an official University of Alabama document. The depth chart is taken from...