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Jumbo Package: Bryce Young poised to become Alabama’s first overall No. 1 NFL Draft pick

It’s not just Bryce’s legendary mental processing, or his extreme likability and a photogenic face-of-the-franchise: the kid just wins, and that matters a whole lot at the end of the day.

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NFL Combine Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images

God bless Charlie at 247. He’s done the dirty work that I really did not want to do: he’s created a complete mock draft roundup of select pundits across the NFL.

All I have to say is that Byron Young is presently projected to go somewhere around 110ish, and whoever does that is going to get an absolute steal — he’ll be on rosters for a decade as a productive NFL defensive lineman. A reader yesterday compared him to a Dalvin Tomlinson / Damion Square-type player, and that’s a great comp. He’s a workhorse.

And Young’s value will only increase as the years wear on, since — as Dennis Dobbs noted in his piece today — everything old is new again: NFL teams are once again valuing the big uglies on the interior of the defensive line.

Strategically, the inside defensive lineman of today — those who can occupy two blockers and collapse a pocket — are considered invaluable. Think of a lither athlete like the 6-foot-4, 313-pound Ndamukong Suh who came out the same year as Cody but lasted NFL 13 seasons.

“You don’t win championships getting gashed up the middle,” said Michigan defensive tackle Mazi Smith, a top 50 draft prospect per CBS Sports. “If the middle is weak, it’s hard to defend. I’m not saying you rely on one person to stuff the middle, but if you get runs going downhill over and over again, you get those guys in the secondary getting hurt.”

From there, a numbers game is set into motion. A dominant interior lineman makes it more likely for an edge rusher to get home. That also relieves pressure on a defensive coordinator who doesn’t have to commit an extra body to the box to stop the run.

Oh, Dear God, no. Please.

Yet another high-profile player has entered his name into the NCAA’s transfer portal in Notre Dame quarterback Tyler Buchner.

The Fighting Irish signal-caller was rumored to have entered his name into the transfer portal on Tuesday, which he later confirmed in a Twitter post. Buchner said he wanted to “explore his options” and, after a discussion with second-year coach Marcus Freeman, said a return to Notre Dame is still possible.

Alabama was among the first teams mentioned as a landing spot for Buchner, a move that makes sense considering former Fighting Irish offensive coordinator Tommy Rees took the same position for the Crimson Tide over the offseason. According to early reports from, the Notre Dame signal-caller is expected to visit Tuscaloosa.

Let’s just hope that Mr. Buchner wishes to return to the hallowed grounds of Notre Dame Stadium. And his no-contact entry to the portal indicates that it is he reaching out to teams, not that he is player amenable to a bidding war for his dubious talents.

Buchner’s “best” statline for the year was completing just above 50% against the garbage South Carolina secondary; he started in three games, threw three TDs (all against said garbage Gamecocks) to five picks; and was by far the least accurate starting passer Notre Dame has had in a decade: 55%. And he was consistently bad too: 55% against OSU, 54% against Marshall with no scores and two picks, and 55% against USC — again, with three interceptions.

Beyond the fact that he’s just not good, I greatly dislike the signal this sends. Alabama is a program that has built a reputation of bringing QBs into the system, and if you’re good enough to play early, you play. If you’re not, you get some seasoning and learn the position. It’s a developmental approach that is flexible enough to recognize youthful talent. Alabama’s roster has four youngster signal-callers, none of whom have appreciable experience, all of whom deserve a shot and the chance to develop.

Worse, I loathe what it signals to future recruits, namely Julian Sayin. It says “we are now taking an impatient approach. If you’re not good enough to play immediately, then we’ll go free agent shopping and deprive you of the chance to take your lumps.”

Go back to South Bend, kid. This is a bad fit for you — unless you happen to like pretty girls in sundresses and cowboy boots (and who among us does not). Otherwise, you’ll be riding the pine...or looking absolutely incompetent against far better talent than what Marshall and Boston College present.

If this is Rees’ idea, it’s a terrible one that smacks of nepotism. If it’s Nick Saban’s, then he really has grown impatient. Alabama did not offer Buchner in high school, and he’s done nothing with the Domers to merit one now. Let the competition play out in fall camp and on the field. Let the players on the roster develop through age and experience, or in a crucible of fire. But not Buchner. Dear God, no.

Still, whether we like it or not, he is taking a visit to Tuscaloosa

Four-Star WR/Athlete Aeryn Hampton has narrowed down his choice to just two schools: Alabama and Texas.

He’s a bit small to play safety in college, but he excelled in 4A Texas ball roving the secondary. His instincts and speed make him ideal as a defender, and he’s very capable as a slot player. But either way, he’s too good of an athlete to not wind up somewhere on the field.

In 2022, he recorded one rush for 27 yards and a touchdown, 55 receptions for 1,161 yards and 13 touchdowns, as well as 74 tackles, nine interceptions, five tackles for loss, five interception touchdowns, three fumble recoveries, two forced fumbles, and two kickoff touchdown returns.

Read More: Four-Star Wide Receiver Down to Final Two Schools |

Alabama is poised to perhaps make school history tonight, if either Will Anderson or Bryce Young become the No. 1 overall pick in the NFL Draft. The Tide has never had an overall No. 1, but Bryce Young is looking very much like he may be the first.

On that note, one of the best draft profiles I’ve read yet dropped last night from Sports Illustrated. The thing about Bryce is not just his mental processing; it’s the it. It covers much the same ground as I did the night that Young won the Heisman. His physical limitations aside, Young does the one thing you demand out of a quarterback: he simply can win when the chips are down.

Bryce Young, Alabama: He’s got what you can’t teach, but why?

Nobody in this group of players can take a game by the scruff of the neck and win it like Young can. He has shown time and time again that he has that skill set in spades. Throughout the process, he’s also become the presumptive No. 1 pick.

Young’s superpower is his mind. His ability to process is renowned, as is the amount Alabama’s coaching staff put on his plate from his early days as a starter. He can handle what he’ll be asked to do at the NFL level, because he’s already done much of it in Tuscaloosa. There’s something to be said for trying to overcome a deficiency with your mind, which brings us where you know we had to go with Young: his size. There is no reality where Bryce Young will ever gain four inches of height and 30 pounds. It obviously does not disqualify him from being the first pick in this draft, but it does mean he isn’t a slam dunk prospect, despite the fact that it appears the Panthers are set to make him the first pick.

Really good piece here:


Will Bryce Young be Alabama’s first-ever No. 1 selection in the NFL Draft?

This poll is closed

  • 76%
    Yes. It’s pretty clear that the Panthers are enamored with him. He did cancel his other visits after meeting with Carolina.
    (260 votes)
  • 7%
    No. It’s either a feint by Carolina or a desperate team is going to overpay for the right to draft Stroud or one of two project players.
    (24 votes)
  • 1%
    No. But that’s because Will Anderson will be taken first, either by Carolina or a team trading up to get him.
    (5 votes)
  • 3%
    Yes. He’ll be taken first. But a desperate team like Indianapolis will trade up for the right to make Bryce their franchise cornerstone.
    (11 votes)
  • 11%
    Honestly don’t know / don’t care.
    (38 votes)
338 votes total Vote Now

Alabama Hoops finalized its appearance in the Emerald Classic this year, part of another demanding non-conference slate that Coach Nate Oats is putting together. That is a very manageable OOC tourney too, as the Tide are joined by Ohio State, Oregon and Santa Clara.

According to Rocco Miller, the consolation bracket teams for the Emerald Coast Classic include Tennessee State, Southeastern Louisiana, Mercer and Western Michigan. The Crimson Tide will reportedly play Mercer in an on-campus game in Tuscaloosa before traveling to Destin.

In addition to playing in the Emerald Coast Classic, the Crimson Tide is set to face the Arizona Wildcats in Phoenix, play the Creighton Bluejays in Omaha, Neb., and host the South Alabama Jaguars as part of a 2-for-1 series, giving Alabama another tough non-conference slate.

“If you don’t play the best, I don’t think you can be the best,” said head coach Nate Oats after winning the SEC Tournament title. “... We won on the road at Houston. The Carolina win doesn’t look as good now. They were No. 1 in the country when we beat them. I thought we played pretty well up there. We beat Michigan State. At the time they were a little better. They’re still a really good program. We’re going to continue to schedule that way.

“I think it’s paid off every year we’ve been here.”

Man, what in the hell is going on in Boulder?

According to a story from David Ubben of The Athletic, there was a clear divide between how players from the old regime have been treated versus how players Sanders has brought in via the transfer portal have been treated since his arrival in Boulder.

“None of the new coaches would talk to the old players and treat us the same as the people they brought in,” former Colorado tight end Zach Courtney told Ubben. Courtney entered the transfer portal on April 19 as spring practice was coming to a close.

“The new guys wouldn’t be picked on as much in film,” he added. “Coaches would tell them to just do better, but if it was an old player, they’d keep going off on what you did wrong and keep yelling about it.”

That simply will not fly in the big boy leagues where NIL can buy a player off your roster, and where the modern athlete has become notoriously less resilient and patient. You can get away with that in the SWAC, but not even in the PAC 12. Over two dozen Buffs have departed since Spring ball began, and an ungodly 13 left last weekend alone.

Sanders is either going to create a nice little intermountain power, or he is going to flame out like Johnny Manziel with an eight-ball, half a dozen hookers, and a private jet to Macau.


Should Alabama sign Tyler Buchner, and explain your reasoning below:

This poll is closed

  • 4%
    (15 votes)
  • 89%
    (310 votes)
  • 5%
    (20 votes)
345 votes total Vote Now