The Wire

  • WATCH: Blount County football fans join together in prayer before game

    After it was announced earlier this week that Blount County Schools would no longer allow student or volunteer-led prayer over the intercom before games, fans were worried that their prayer would be silenced.

    However, if Friday’s Locust Fork High School game was any indication, prayer in Blount County will continue.

    In a video posted on Twitter, the crowd of students and fans can be seen banding together to use the designated pregame moment of silence to fill the stands with the Lord’s Prayer.

  • Mike Rogers on Kavanaugh: ‘It is Doug Jones’ job to represent the majority will in Alabama when he casts his vote in Washington’

    Friday during an appearance on Birmingham’s Talk 99.5’s “Matt & Aunie Show,” Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Saks) weighed in on the current controversy surrounding U.S. Supreme Court associate justice nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation and how his colleagues in the U.S. Senate are handling the confirmation process to date.

    During the segment, Rogers responded to a question about his House colleague Rep. Bradley Byrne (R-Fairhope) calling on Sen. Doug Jones (D-Mountain Brook) to vote for Kavanaugh’s confirmation if Kavanaugh accuser Christine Blasey Ford did not step forward and announce her intentions to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee.

    The Calhoun County Republican agreed with Byrne and suggested Jones “represent the majority will” of Alabamians.

  • Ivey, Byrne showcase ‘old-fashioned’ courthouse rally as GOP poised to take Monroe County

    Excerpt:

    MONROEVILLE – During Alabama’s transition from Democrat to Republican that began in the 1990s and was capped off in 2010 with the GOP finally gaining control of all the branches of government in Montgomery, the local government in Monroe County was one place that was able to resist that trend.

    However, the politics of the state could finally be catching up with one of Alabama’s most historic counties.

    In a setting that had the feeling of being a throwback to the heyday of political rallies staged by the likes former Gov. “Big” Jim Folsom and former Congressman Frank Boykin, the Monroe County Republican Party hosted a rally featuring Gov. Kay Ivey and Rep. Bradley Byrne (R-Fairhope) on the lawn of the old Monroe County Courthouse that is thought to be the inspiration for the courthouse in fictitious Maycomb, Alabama, the scene of Harper Lee’s “To Kill A Mockingbird.”

    The goal of the event was to energize GOP voters headed into the midterm elections and flip major local offices in Monroe County, including district judge, sheriff and probate judge, currently held by Democrats to Republican.

2 days ago

College football week 4: A look at the state’s matchups and national lines

With fall officially underway and college football through three weeks of action, Alabama’s favorite teams face some must-see tests in week four.

UAB is off this week, but all of the Yellowhammer State’s other teams play on Saturday. Alabama has an interesting matchup against Jimbo Fisher’s Texas A&M, while Auburn looks to bounce back against Arkansas.

You can find all of the state’s Saturday game times and how to watch below, as well as the lines for the nation’s top matchups (now that Mississippi has legal sports betting).

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All games below are on Saturday, September 22:

UWA at Limestone (Gaffney, SC) 12:00 p.m. CST
Watch online here.

Alabama vs. Texas A&M (Bryant-Denny Stadium, Tuscaloosa, AL), 2:30 p.m. CST
TV: CBS or watch online here.

Alabama A&M at Southern University (Ladd-Peebles Stadium, Mobile, AL), 4:00 p.m. CST

Troy at University of Lousiana at Monroe (Monroe, LA), 6:00 p.m. CST
Watch online here.

JSU vs. Tennessee Tech (Burgess-Snow Field, Jacksonville, AL), 6:00 p.m. CST
Watch online here.

Samford at Chattanooga (Chattanooga, TN), 6:00 p.m. CST
Watch online here.

ASU at Grambling State (Grambling, LA), 6:00 p.m. CST
Listen online here.

UNA vs. AZUSA Pacific (Braly Stadium, Florence, AL), 6:00 p.m. CST
Watch online here.

Auburn vs. Arkansas (Jordan-Hare Stadium, Auburn, AL), 6:30 p.m. CST
TV: SEC Network or watch online here.

South Alabama at Memphis (Memphis, TN), 7:00 p.m. CST
Watch online here.


Graphic by Alabama’s Paul Shashy; lines by Oddshark

Sean Ross is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn

3 days ago

Get ready for the Birmingham Iron in Alliance American Football

(AAF/YouTube)

Get ready for the Birmingham Iron, Memphis Express, Orlando Apollos and Atlanta Legends.

Those are four of the eight franchise names for the Alliance of American Football, which begins play the weekend after the Super Bowl with a 10-game spring schedule.

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The Alliance, created by Pro Football Hall of Famer Bill Polian and film and TV producer Charlie Ebersol, unveiled the names and logos on Thursday.

The other four franchises, in Salt Lake City, San Diego, Phoenix and San Antonio, will announce their names and reveal their colors next week.

Each city, plus its fans, had input into the names.

Ebersol says, “We feel strongly that our team names identify with the great cities we call home to our Alliance teams and positively represent the region and our fans.”

The Orlando team will play at Spectrum Stadium and is coached by Steve Spurrier.

Atlanta will play in Georgia State Stadium, the old Ted Turner Field and 1996 Olympics stadium, with Brad Childress in charge.

Memphis plays in the Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium with Mike Singletary as coach, while Birmingham will call Legion Field home and has Tim Lewis as coach.
(Associated Press, copyright 2018)

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3 days ago

This weekend’s comprehensive college football TV schedule

(Pixabay)

For a printable version, click here. Pro tip: Save the image below to your phone for quick and easy access all weekend.

(Note: All times are Central)

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3 days ago

Should Alabama bet on sports betting?

(YHN/Flaticon)

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled last May that states could legalize sports betting. New Jersey, Delaware, West Virginia and Mississippi have joined Nevada in offering legal sports betting, and about twenty other states have taken steps toward legalization.

Should Alabama join this crowd?

The size of the sports betting market is one argument in the affirmative. We lack accurate statistics on the current largely illegal U.S. sports betting market. A 1999 Congressional study estimated that Americans bet between $80 and $380 billion annually, while pro and college football betting has recently been estimated at $100 billion. A study by Oxford Economics for the American Gaming Association estimated that nationwide legalization and mobile betting could result in a $300 billion a year market.

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Most of the bets are paid out to the winning gamblers, but bookmakers keep some for expenses and profits. Legalization brings this gaming revenue out of the black market or back from offshore casinos to support jobs in states legalizing betting. Oxford Economics projects that nationwide legalization could create 90,000 jobs and annual tax revenue of $8 billion, through taxes on gambling and taxes paid by now legal employees.

Without legalization, Alabama will not share in these jobs and tax revenues. Alabama sports bettors’ money will support businesses and government services in other states.

While jobs and tax revenue are nice, prosperity ultimately involves providing goods, services, and activities people want. Jobs from value-creating businesses – those providing the most desired goods and services – create economically thriving communities. Alabama will miss out on a value-creating industry by not legalizing sports betting.

But does sports betting truly generate value? A skeptic could point out that gambling is a zero-sum game (the losses cancel out wins) and creates no products. Yet millions of people value having action on games and get satisfaction from their winning bets. People willingly place bets they know they might lose. Economists call such satisfaction utility. All economic activity beyond sustenance and survival is about generating utility by providing people with things they want.

Why do people enjoy betting? Economists leave such questions to psychologists. The exclusively voluntary nature of market activities excludes predatory activities from value creation. Everyone must either want to participate (place bets) or be compensated to participate – say cleaning up the sportsbook at night. Sports betting passes the voluntary participation test.

Sports betting’s biggest negative is the problem gamblers who lose more than they can afford, resulting in bankruptcy and often devastating their families. This is most unfortunate, but are problem gamblers better off with prohibition? People have long been able to bet illegally, with online betting only making access easier. Prohibition, however, makes problem gambler’s difficulties worse. Legal sportsbooks will not break legs to collect debts; indeed, it will not be profitable to let gamblers make bets they cannot pay off. Regulations on legal betting can help protect problem gamblers from themselves and ensure help is available when wanted.

The increased betting volume from legalization increases the risk of gamblers paying players to fix games. This is a real threat: the “Black Sox” scandal nearly ruined Major League Baseball, and college players who will never play professionally might find gamblers’ dollars very tempting. NBA Commissioner Adam Silver proposed that an integrity fee on all bets, with leagues using the proceeds to guard against illicit deals.

Sportsbooks, though, already have a strong incentive to protect the integrity of games. A $300 billion a year betting market will generate significant profits for years to come provided the public does not view the contests as rigged. Sportsbooks also will not want to pay off rigged bets. Suspicious betting patterns and statistical analysis can help identify rigged contests. Scandals will undoubtedly occur, but cooperation between sportsbooks, the leagues and law enforcement should keep the contests legitimate.

Jobs, taxes and losing both to neighboring states are all worthwhile considerations. But I think that the most compelling argument is the freedom to engage legally in an activity many Alabamians value. Despite the benefits, I wouldn’t bet on Alabama legalizing sports betting anytime soon.

Daniel Sutter is the Charles G. Koch Professor of Economics with the Manuel H. Johnson Center for Political Economy at Troy University.

1 week ago

The way Troy University just made $1.1M is really going to sting for Nebraska

(Troy Trojans/Twitter)

For the second year in a row, Troy University’s football team made big money off of upsetting a heavily favored opponent.

On Saturday, the Trojans travelled to Lincoln and defeated Nebraska 24-19.

Last year, the team from southeast Alabama went to Death Valley and shocked LSU 24-21. They made just under a million dollars from that game.

Here are the results from week three matchups across the Yellowhammer State:

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All games below were on Saturday, September 15:

UAB 31 – Tulane 24 (Legion Field, Birmingham, AL)

Samford 24 – Mercer 30 (Seibert Stadium, Birmingham, AL)

Auburn 21 – LSU 22 (Jordan-Hare Stadium)

UNA 7 – North Dakota State 38 (Fargo, ND)

ASU 13 – Kennesaw State 62 (Kennesaw, GA)

Alabama 62 – Ole Miss 7 (Oxford, MS)

UWA 24 – Valdosta State 58 (Tiger Stadium, Livingston, AL)

South Alabama 41 – Texas State 31 (Ladd-Peebles Stadium, Mobile, AL)

Alabama A&M 7 – University of Cincinnati 63 (Cincinnati, OH)

Sean Ross is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn

1 week ago

College football week 3: A look at the state’s matchups and national lines

(Pixabay)

College football is in full swing with two weeks of games done and dusted, and Alabama’s favorite teams have some exciting matchups in week three.

JSU is off this week, but all of the Yellowhammer State’s other teams play on Saturday. The Crimson Tide and Auburn have their first SEC matchups and Troy travels to Nebraska in games to keep an eye on.

You can find all of the state’s Saturday game times and how to watch below, as well as the lines for the nation’s top matchups (now that Mississippi has legal sports betting).

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All games below are on Saturday, September 15:

Troy at Nebraska (Lincoln, NE), 11:00 a.m. CST
TV: Big Ten Network or watch online here.

UAB vs. Tulane (Legion Field, Birmingham, AL), 12:00 p.m. CST
Listen online here or watch via Facebook live.

Samford vs. Mercer (Seibert Stadium, Birmingham, AL), 2:00 p.m. CST
Watch online here.

Auburn vs. LSU (Jordan-Hare Stadium), 2:30 p.m. CST
TV: CBS

UNA at North Dakota State (Fargo, ND), 2:30 p.m. CST
Watch online here or listen online here.

ASU at Kennesaw State (Kennesaw, GA), 4:00 p.m. CST
Watch online here.

Alabama at Ole Miss (Oxford, MS), 6:00 p.m. CST
TV: ESPN

UWA vs. Valdosta State (Tiger Stadium, Livingston, AL) 6:00 p.m. CST
Watch online here.

South Alabama vs. Texas State (Ladd-Peebles Stadium, Mobile, AL), 6:00 p.m. CST
Watch online here.

Alabama A&M at University of Cincinnati (Cincinnati, OH), 6:00 p.m. CST

Graphic by Alabama’s Paul Shashy; lines by Oddshark

Sean Ross is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn

1 week ago

WATCH: Former Alabama football star Dre Kirkpatrick dances with elderly woman at nursing home

(WLWT/YouTube)

Cincinnati Bengals cornerback and former University of Alabama star Dre Kirkpatrick hosted a tailgate party at a local nursing home before playing the Baltimore Ravens on Thursday Night Football, and the six-year NFL veteran participated in a dance battle with an elderly woman.

Kirkpatrick, who is a native of Gadsden, played for the Crimson Tide from 2009-2012, winning two national championships.

However, in the video posted by Brandon Saho of WLWT, Kirkpatrick was not the star.

Watch:

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Sean Ross is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn

1 week ago

This weekend’s comprehensive college football TV schedule

(YHN)

For a printable version, click here. Pro tip: Save the image below to your phone for quick and easy access all weekend.

(Note: All times are Central)

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2 weeks ago

Bama, Auburn named to top ten of most valuable college football teams list

(AU, UA/Facebook)

Tuesday, Forbes released a list of the 25 most valuable teams in college football and both the University of Alabama and Auburn University made the top ten.

The rankings were compiled by averaging annual revenue and profit from the last three available seasons – 2014, 2015 and 2016.

Alabama was ranked fourth, with average revenue of $127 million and profit of $59 million.

“Alabama actually ranks just 10th in team profit, since no other program comes close to matching the Crimson Tide in spending: Alabama football spends an average $68 million per year, a staggering 22% more than any other team in the nation,” Forbes noted.

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Auburn came in at number eight on the elite list, with average revenue of $112 million and profit of $61 million.

This is the first time Forbes has ranked college football teams since 2015, when Alabama ranked eighth and Auburn tenth.

On the spending side, the publication’s 2015 edition explained that teams like Alabama and Auburn are continually investing in their respective program’s success, which has become expensive in modern times.

Between facility costs, extravagant game-day operations, staffing, recruiting expenses and scholarships, the programs are reinvesting revenue to ensure longevity.

Only Texas A&M and Texas averaged more revenue than Alabama, with Michigan tying the Capstone.

Sean Ross is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn

2 weeks ago

Former Bama star Rep. Rich Wingo: Sports gambling ‘scares me to death’

(R. Wingo/Facebook)

State Rep. Rich Wingo (R-Tuscaloosa), a former University of Alabama football star, is raising the stakes with his opposition to sports betting, telling host Don Dailey on Friday’s episode of Capitol Journal that gambling on athletics “scares” him “to death.”

Wingo also played five seasons for the Green Bay Packers and knows the dangers of mixing sports and gambling first-hand. He explained that the FBI would show up every year at their NFL team meetings to talk about sports gambling and how gamblers will try and get involved with players to influence the outcome of a game.

“[T]he mob, for the lack of a better term – professional gamblers, would try to possibly infiltrate a team or an individual through compromise … so that they could eventually, either befriend or through leverage of threat, manipulate a game,” Wingo explained.

Wingo sees this issue as a “gradual eroding of our culture” that would have never even been a debate when he played in the 1970’s and 1980’s.

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“Today, the sports gambling, it bothers me – it scares me to death actually,” Wingo emphasized.

For the state of Alabama specifically, Wingo sees the threat of sports gambling negatively affecting college football.

“From an athlete’s perspective, can you imagine – I mean I don’t even know where you start – because gambling is going to infiltrate if it’s legalized like in Mississippi,” Wingo outlined. “There’s going to be infiltration, there’s going to be compromise, there just is. And whenever money is involved, I hate it because it’s going to pervert the game.”

“Can you imagine now the recruiting? Can you imagine a family that has nothing and now we involved the gaming aspect of it?” he continued.

Wingo warned that a gambling entity could help a player’s family financially and then hold that player hostage “to try and compromise that player two or three years down the road when that player is on the field.”

He added, “Can you imagine the possibility of a phone call where ‘so-and-so’ wide-receiver doesn’t need to catch that ball in the end zone? Or that field goal kicker goes from getting ‘I’m sorry you missed that field goal’ to death threats – legitimate death threats. Or having phone calls prior to that kick saying ‘you don’t need to make a field goal.'”

Wingo does not think players, especially college-aged “young men,” should have to face these possibilities.

“I just feel like we have perverted the game; I think we are ruining the game,” Wingo lamented.

Just like gambling in general, Wingo fears that sports betting will most hurt players from poorer families.

“And try to separate someone trying to befriend you and someone that eventually is going to compromise you. Tough spot. Shouldn’t have to have been put in that position,” Wingo said.

Those are just the sports-specific objections that Wingo has to gambling. He also has issues with gambling in general.

“I’ve never known anyone, Don, that’s ever just said,  ‘You know, boy, gambling has been the best thing for my family.’ Or a child or a wife say that, ‘Boy, I just love when my daddy gambles.’ I’ve never heard that,” Wingo told the host. “I’ve never heard someone say how gambling has bettered their family, their society, their community.”

“Why do we encourage these things?” Wingo asked.

He continued to say that 86 percent of people who buy lottery tickets live under the poverty line. He pointed to Mississippi, which has had a lottery since 1992, as proof that gambling is not a fix-all, adding that Alabama’s western neighbor has seen increased crime and Medicaid rolls since then.

This comes after Mississippi this summer joined only a handful of other states in legalizing sports betting. Their first lawful sports wagers took place at the Beau Rivage Casino in Biloxi on August 1.

Gamblers can now travel from far and wide to Mississippi and bet on just about anything from college football to the NFL, to basketball and baseball. Many Alabamians are expected to make the trip across the state line to do just that.

In Alabama, gambling on greyhound and horse racing is legal. Gambling involving other sports would need to pass a referendum of the people. Rep. Paul Lee (R-Dothan) has predicted that the state legislature will consider a sports betting bill in 2019, however, he believes its passage is a long shot.

Alabama is also one of nine states that outlaw the nationally-booming online business of daily fantasy sports.

Watch, starting at the 42:30 mark:

Sean Ross is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn

2 weeks ago

Watch: Auburn players go nuts celebrating after walk-on awarded scholarship

(Auburn Football/Twitter)

A video posted by Auburn’s football program shows the moment on Thursday that head coach Gus Malzahn announced walk-on tight-end/H-back Robert Muschamp from Rome, Georgia has been awarded a scholarship for his senior year.

Malzahn, while addressing the team in the video, praised the scout team player for his unselfishness and versatility. Muschamp, the nephew of former Auburn defensive coordinator Will Muschamp, originally came to Auburn as a linebacker and has also played fullback besides his current positions on offense.

“Alright, pretty special day here,” Malzahn told the team following practice. “We’ve had a scholarship come available, which is rare at this time.”

He continued, “Like I [have] said, this is a really important thing for walk-ons, alright.”

Malzahn then began describing the player who was being awarded the honor. 

“The guy that’s getting the scholarship here, is a guy that’s a senior – he’s been here since 2015,” Malzahn previewed. “Been here a long time. Plays linebacker, plays 3-back. Plays scout team. Plays special teams.”

“Robert Muschamp!” the coach exclaimed over the yells of Muschamp’s excited teammates.

The team’s reaction was really something to behold.

WATCH:

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The walk-on player’s years of hard-work and dedication paid off – now literally.

Muschamp, who is also the grandson of former U.S. Poultry & Egg Association chairman and Fort Payne Mayor Bill Jordan, recently was given a “Senior Spotlight” by the Auburn Athletics Department.

“Growing up my whole life, I’ve been a huge Auburn fan,” Muschamp said. “I’m the 22nd person in my family to come to Auburn. Growing up, it was always ingrained in me, so that played a huge part. It’s something I always wanted to do as a kid, so being here and doing it is pretty surreal. This place means more to me than words can describe.”

“This is the best university in the country,” he added. “Auburn is a special place and will always be a special place to me.”

Sean Ross is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn

2 weeks ago

College football week 2: A look at the state’s matchups and national lines

(YHN)

After Labor Day weekend got the ball rolling for Alabama’s favorite college football teams, week two features an array of exciting matchups across the Yellowhammer State.

The only non-Saturday game this week saw the University of West Alabama beat Miles College on Thursday. The University of South Alabama Jaguars will try to upset Oklahoma State in Stillwater in a weekend game-to-watch.

You can find all of the state’s Saturday game times and how to watch below, as well as the lines for the nation’s top matchups (since Mississippi now has legal sports betting).

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All games below are on Saturday, September 8:

Alabama vs. Arkansas State (Bryant-Denny Stadium), 2:30 p.m. CST
TV: ESPN2

UAB at Coastal Carolina (Conway, SC), 6:00 p.m. CST
TV: ESPN+ or watch online here.

JSU vs. Mississippi Valley State (Burgess-Snow Field, Jacksonville, AL), 6:00 p.m. CST
TV: ESPN+ or watch online here.

Troy vs. Florida A&M (Veterans Memorial Stadium, Troy, AL), 6:00 p.m. CST
TV: ESPN+ or watch online here.

Alabama A&M vs. UNA (Louis Crews Stadium, Huntsville, AL), 6:00 p.m. CST
Listen live here.

Samford at Florida State (Tallahassee, FL), 6:20 p.m. CST
TV: ACC Network or watch online here.

Auburn vs. Alabama State (Jordan-Hare Stadium), 6:30 p.m. CST
TV: SEC Network or watch online here.

South Alabama at Oklahoma State (Stillwater, OK), 7:00 p.m. CST
TV: Fox Sports or watch online here.


Graphic by Alabama’s Paul Shashy; lines by Oddshark

Sean Ross is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn

2 weeks ago

This weekend’s comprehensive college football TV schedule

(Pixabay)

For a printable version, click here. Pro tip: Save the image below to your phone for quick and easy access all weekend.

(Note: All times are Central)

1
3 weeks ago

Watch: Tua Tagovailoa’s parents pray for their son in reaction to the Bama QB starting on Saturday

(C. Chambers WBRC/Facebook)

After coach Nick Saban sent Tua Tagovailoa onto the field as Alabama’s starting quarterback against Louisville, WBRC’s Christina Chambers captured Tagovailoa’s parents in the stands praying – heads bowed and eyes closed – with the emotion of the moment evident in their faces.

“Diane and Galu started praying as soon as they saw their son trot on the field! I think it’s safe to say they didn’t know who would start either,” Chambers said. “I loved capturing this sweet moment.”

Watch:

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This explains where Tua got his humility and faith from; remember, he credited his “Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ” in post-game interviews after leading the Crimson Tide to the National Championship in January.

“First and foremost, I’d just like to thank my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. With him, all things are possible. That’s what happened tonight,” Tua told an ESPN reporter in January.

He continued, “All glory goes to God. I can’t describe what He’s done for me and my family. Who would have ever thought I would have been here, right now in this moment. So, you know, thank God for that, and I’d just like to thank my teammates and coach Saban for giving me the opportunity.”

Sean Ross is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn

3 weeks ago

Alabama named the most ‘hated’ college football team

(Alabama Football/Facebook)

National polling released on Thursday claims that the Alabama Crimson Tide are the most “hated” team in college football.

The results, collected by the research firm Lightspeed at the request of The Wall Street Journal (WSJ), showed that 16 percent of respondents “hated” Alabama the most out of any team in the nation. Nick Saban’s program was followed by Ohio State, Notre Dame, Penn State, Michigan, Southern California (USC), Texas, Oklahoma and Nebraska respectively.

The WSJ theorized why the top teams were included, saying, “Alabama and Ohio State, have won national titles in the last four years, while No. 4 Penn State is still emerging from the shadow of the Jerry Sandusky sex-abuse scandal.”

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They continued to note that, “Notre Dame irks the rest of the country by remaining independent instead of joining a conference like almost every other school. Michigan irks by simply being Michigan.”

Alabama opens its season Saturday at 7:00 pm CST against Louisville in Orlando. The game will be televised on ABC.

For the rest of the state’s games and how to watch, click here.

For a schedule of all the nationally televised college football games over Labor Day weekend, click here.

Sean Ross is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn

3 weeks ago

This weekend’s comprehensive college football TV schedule

(Pixabay)

For a printable version, click here. Pro tip: Save the image below to your phone for quick and easy access all weekend.

(Note: All times are Central)

1
4 weeks ago

Alabama native Jamarcus Russell using his story to teach kids while coaching at his alma mater

(WRKG/Facebook)

Mobile-native and former LSU quarterback Jamarcus Russell has returned to his high school to coach.

In a recent interview with WKRG’s Randy Patrick, Russell talked about going back to his alma mater of Williamson High School in Mobile to coach quarterbacks, helping his successors fill his shoes.

“I get a chance to be back on the same field,” the former NFL player told Patrick. “We cried, we bled, we sweat at the same time.”

It’s an opportunity to reminisce about his days as a high school football player and to invest in the players.

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“We sat in the same locker room and played on the same field and [I] just try to give them that spirit to let them know that it can happen,” Russell said.

Russell went on to discuss his favorite moment playing for Nick Saban at LSU when as a freshman, the two were in the pre-game tunnel and Saban told him he was going to start the second half against Oregon State.

Russell also spoke about his short-lived career as an NFL quarterback.

“If I had been meant to have a long and prosperous time in the NFL I would have, but God, he gave me some stuff that I can carry on that I can give to the kids, youth, grown men, whoever,” he said.

Watch the full interview here.

1 month ago

Tuscaloosa’s Deontay Wilder meets with Alabama football team, emphasizes the power of teamwork

(Alabama Football/Twitter)

The University of Alabama football program was treated to a visit Monday by Tuscaloosa’s native-son and boxer Deontay Wilder, who stressed the importance of teamwork and brotherhood.

Nicknamed “The Bronze Bomber,” Wilder has been the reigning World Boxing Council heavyweight champion since 2015, boasting a career record of 40-0 with 39 knockouts.

“If you look to your left and to your right, that’s your teammate,” Wilder told the team as the players continue to prepare for their season opener on September 1 against Louisville in Orlando. “That’s your source. That’s your strength. That’s your backbone.”

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He continued, “See that’s the thing about it – y’all got each other. And it’s a beautiful thing to have each other. Because with each other, within numbers, you’re stronger.”

“You combine yourselves, you put your minds together, you think like y’all are supposed to think on a team – nobody will stop you,” Wilder explained. “I’m rooting for y’all. Because we’re both battling. We’re both representing. When y’all are knocking people out, I’m knocking them out, too.

Watch:

Sean Ross is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn

1 month ago

Charles Barkley: Going to Auburn ‘was the best decision I ever made’ (VIDEO)

(Auburn Football/Twitter)

Auburn University’s football program on Tuesday posted a video of school basketball legend Charles Barkley giving a speech to the team as they continue preseason preparations.

“I came here in 1981,” Barkley told the players. “And it was the best decision I ever made in my life.”

He continued, “When I travel the world, people are screaming ‘War Eagle’ at me. I get little goosebumps every single time.”

The speech came as part of Auburn’s “Manhood – Beyond the Field” character development program. Barkley, for his part, reminded the players that what they do off-the-field always reflects on their university and themselves as individuals.

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“You don’t have any days off… you don’t have any days off because of that AU on the front of your jersey,” Barkley emphasized.

The NBA Hall of Fame inductee went on to tell the football team how excited he is for their season and that they have an opportunity to accomplish feats no one would ever be able to take away from them.

“I’m proud to be an Auburn guy,” Barkley exclaimed. “Listen – take advantage of this opportunity. It doesn’t come along often.”

He also explained that the journey, while worthwhile, would not be easy.

“It’s going to be hard, it’s going to be hard. You guys have a grueling schedule,” Barkley admitted.

Barkley then advised the players how to deal with the adversity.

“Listen – don’t worry about that,” he said about the daunting schedule ahead of the team.

He continued, “One game at a time… one game at a time, that’s the only thing you can control. Don’t worry about who you’re playing in a month.”

Auburn opens their season against Washington in Atlanta on September 1 at 2:30 pm.

Watch:

Sean Ross is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn

1 month ago

Mobile City Council votes down proposal to offer taxpayer funds for University of South Alabama stadium

(USA)

Tuesday by a 3-4 vote, the Mobile City Council voted against a proposal supported by Mobile Mayor Sandy Stimpson that would have given the University of South Alabama $10 million of taxpayer money over 20 years for a new on-campus football stadium.

The drama as to whether or not the city council would vote to fund the stadium played out over two months with Stimpson last week announcing that if the council did not vote to support the proposal by today, both he and University of South Alabama President Dr. Tony Waldrop would withdraw the proposal.

Voting in the affirmative were councilmembers Joel Daves, Fred Richardson and Gina Gregory, and voting against it were councilmembers CJ Small, Bess Rich, Levon Manzie and John Williams.

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Stimpson’s goal was to have the University of South Alabama facility in West Mobile serve as a replacement for the aging Ladd-Peebles Stadium closer to Mobile’s downtown.

Stimpson expressed his disappointment with the council’s decision.

“I am disappointed with today’s decision,” Stimpson said in a statement following the vote. “It sends a message to the NFL that the City does not support the Senior Bowl. It leaves Ladd Stadium with zero funding to create a facility that meets the needs of the neighborhood and the four high school football teams that play there. It leaves the City with no plan to solve the $33 million maintenance issue. Ladd will now have to compete with every other public facility fighting for funding. Over the course of the next 10 years, the City will accumulate $225 million in maintenance costs. This window of opportunity is gone, but we will continue to have to make tough choices on how we fund our public facilities.”

@Jeff_Poor is a graduate of Auburn University and is the editor of Breitbart TV.

1 month ago

Nick Saban on toughness: ‘What does it take to break you’ (VIDEO)

(ESPN/YouTube)

In a viral video posted Sunday on Twitter, University of Alabama head football coach Nick Saban defined toughness to his team.

“I’ve never really stood up here, in all the time that I’ve been here, and ever really defined toughness to you,” Saban began.

The six-time National Championship-winning coach then outlined his meaning of the word.

“The way I’m going to define toughness to you – because I’m talking about mental toughness and I think everybody can relate to it – is it’s all about what does it take to break you,” Saban explained.

Watch:

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Sean Ross is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn

1 month ago

Voting underway for North Alabama Class-AA baseball team name

(Baseball Is Back In North Alabama/Facebook)

The Moon Possums, Comet Jockeys and Space Chimps are among the five possible names for the minor league baseball team moving to Madison.

Team owner Ballcorps, LLC on Friday announced the proposed names.

Thunder Sharks and Trash Pandas round out the final five names.

Most of the proposed names gave a nod to the region’s deep connections to the national space exploration program.

The five names were selected from 10 possibilities during a period of online voting.

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All possible team names were nominated by north Alabama residents.

A new round of voting for a team name began Friday at NorthAlabamaBaseball.com and will last through Sept. 3.

The final team name will be announced on Sept. 5.

BallCorps purchased the Mobile BayBears last year and is relocating the team to Madison.
(Associated Press, copyright 2018)

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1 month ago

WATCH: Auburn awards scholarship to walk-on quarterback who thanks God for his success

(Auburn Football/Twitter)

In a video posted Sunday by Auburn’s football program, head coach Gus Malzahn announced walk-on quarterback Devin Adams from Mobile has been awarded a scholarship for his senior year.

Malzahn, while addressing the team in the video, praised the scout team quarterback for his unselfishness.

“He never complained one time. He’ll just do whatever he can to help the team,” Malzahn emphasized.

He continued, “The guy that’s getting the scholarship tonight, I gave him a nickname and it’s well deserved. He doesn’t need much practice. He’ll go out there and just perform.”

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“He’s ‘The Natural.’ It’s Devin Adams,” Malzahn announced, revealing the scholarship winner.

In an Instagram post of himself signing the paperwork, Adams gave the glory to God.

“God has been too real in my life … [Auburn Football] I appreciate everything!! Couldn’t thank you enough,” he said.

WATCH:

Sean Ross is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn

1 month ago

‘It’s okay if you cry’: Troy football shares video of mother awarding her son scholarship

(Troy Trojans/Twitter)

The Troy University Trojans football team shared an emotional video on Sunday, saying “It’s okay if you cry, we won’t judge you!”

In the video, head coach Neal Brown huddles the team up before announcing a big surprise.

“One of our hardest workers,” Brown says to begin his announcement. “Started every game for us last year, done great in school for us — 3.0+ GPA.”

“Giving away a full scholarship to someone who earned it tonight,” Brown tells the huddle. “And his mom’s going to give it to him.”

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“Cameron Kaye, give it up,” Brown exclaims, as the player emerges from the cheering crowd of players.

Kaye, who earned the scholarship as a walk-on, walks over to his mom as she is holding the paperwork and hugs her.

Watch:

Sean Ross is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn