Thursday Tide Thoughts: Recruiting and Leadership

It’s Thursday, so it’s time to talk a little Alabama football.

This is timely, because yesterday was a big day for the Tide as another top-ranked recruiting class was added to the cupboard.  Well, it’s not just another No. 1 class.  On paper, this is the most talented class Alabama has ever signed.  Recruiting service lists six “Five Star” players signing with the Tide this year.  For a little comparison, before Nick Saban arrived in Tuscaloosa, five star players came along less often than leap years.  Now, Tide fans are a little disappointed when we find out a newly committed player has only four.

Apparently, though, some aren’t as intrigued with the stars falling on Alabama.  Take AJ McCarron for example.  Though he was once a highly recruited player himself, he’s not so thrilled with all of those stars now:

“That’s the kind of thing that ticks me off about recruiting and when these kids come in and they’re five-stars and they expect to play right off the bat,” McCarron said in an interview with Jim Rome. “It’s a little entitlement, and when they don’t play off the bat, they get a little ticked off and they don’t want to work.”

These comments are a little ironic considering that upon his arrival, McCarron thought he should automatically ascend to the backup quarterback role.  Saban even noted as much in his Wednesday press conference:

Saban said he remembers McCarron coming to his office complaining because he was the third string QB in his first freshman scrimmage.

Sure, the last couple of classes arrived to national championship defending teams and I’m sure it’s a challenge to instill the same kind of work ethic in an environment with so much success.  But that doesn’t mean you should recruit less talented players.  In fact, the notion of that is quite absurd.

No, what the 2013 needed was a tad more leadership.  Amidst all of the three-peat talk, perhaps the team leaders should have foregone cover shoots for magazines and televised interview related to their philanthropic work and just focused a bit more on the team.


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