Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Tide looks to end road woes

The Crimson Tide cannot control where it’s ranked in the BCS standing. The Tide cannot control if teams ranked higher win or lose. The only thing Alabama can control right now is itself, and the team’s focus this week has been on improvement, head coach Nick Saban said.

“The question that I asked in practice today is, ‘What does it really mean to improve?’” Saban said. “Successful people have a burning desire to always want to be the best they can be.”

One thing the Tide must work on is how the team has played on the road. In both Southeastern Conference road games this season, the Tide has gotten off to slow starts, something that Saban said his team must straighten out.

“We have played a little better at home than we have on the road,” Saban said. “This is an opportunity for us to show that we can play with focus and intensity and execute in a very difficult environment against a very good team.”

As far as difficult environments are concerned, there are not many places as loud as Neyland Stadium on a Saturday.

“They have such a loud stadium that [the coaches] play ‘Rocky Top’ while we are practicing sometimes,” he said.

Due to the number of players the Tide lost on defense from last season, many question the team’s maturity. The team, however, is growing and improving in its maturity every day, sophomore safety Will Lowery said.

“We are definitely maturing,” Lowery said. “It has been a little bit of a process. We haven’t been on the top of our game every series like we want to be. It is definitely a learning process for a lot of guys, and a lot of guys have come a long way.”

Saban compared the maturing process to the way a child goes through a learning process growing up.

“You have young players that get distracted more easily,” Saban said. “Young children get distracted more easily; adolescents have a tougher time focusing. Some of these things you have to learn how to do.”

2011 schedule released

Alabama released its 2011 football schedule Wednesday. The Tide will be on the road against Penn State, Florida, Ole Miss, Mississippi State and Auburn. Home games for the Tide include Kent State, North Texas, Arkansas, Vanderbilt, Tennessee, LSU and Georgia Southern.

The game against Penn State will conclude the home and home agreement between the two schools and will serve as the first test for the Tide.

The opener against Kent State holds a special meaning for Saban, as he will be facing his alma mater.

“We didn’t schedule the game because it was my alma mater,” Saban said. “I think it is good for us to get a Mid-American opponent. The Mid-American Conference is a really good football conference. There has been a lot of good players and coaches that have come out of that league for a long time. I coached in that league and played in that league, so I have a tremendous amount of respect for Kent State and the Mid-American Conference.”

More to Discover