Alabama’s Nick Saban Welcomes Phelps To Pre-Season Motivational
The list of guest speakers for the Crimson Tide is an impressive one and now has a new addition.
Olympic 23-time Gold medal winner, Michael Phelps, visited the players after their 3rd preseason practice.
The Tide and Michael Phelps have a lot in common, both are a source that dominates.
Now we all remember when Michael Phelps stated once that when he was a teenager he wanted to play football…I wonder if that dream was to be a Crimson Tide player?
Since Michael is the most decorated Olympian of all time, he made the right choice by hitting the pool versus the field. He has a very impressive collection of Olympic Medals. A total of 28 Olympic medals, and out of those 23 are gold!
Nick Saban has a way to bring out the best of the best to speak to his Crimson Tide players. That list alone includes some of the all-time greatest athletes.
Kobe Bryant, Michael Jordan, Mike Tyson, Alex Rodriquez, and Charles Barkley are just a few of the names of the guest speakers.
So what are the words of wisdom Nick Saban has stated at Alabama Media Day, don't worry I won't let you down, continue reading for that.
Competition at corner spots
“Well, I think the good news is, we have competition. I can't tell you that any guy on the depth chart has sort of separated himself in terms of who's the most consistent performers, who's going to give up the fewest plays, who’s going to be the best tackler, but we do have really good competition at all those positions. Khyree Jackson, Eli Ricks battle it. Kool-Aid [McKinstry] and Terrion Arnold battle it. Jahquez Robinson has shown a lot of improvement to be a contributor at some position. I think Brian Branch could actually play corner if we needed him to. We do practice him some there. So I can't give you any like it's a horse race, who’s in the lead, who’s in second, who’s in third. That’s why we have a competition.”
“He's made a lot of improvement. I think that Eli sort of with the injuries that he had and the time that he was off, it was really a more difficult transition for him physically, emotionally, mentally, to come from where he was, to where he needs to get to to be a kind of player that he wants to be. And we certainly want to help him do that in every way we can. I think that sometimes when you go through all those things, it can affect your confidence a little bit because you get frustrated and struggle because you're not used to being in the kind of condition that you once were. No fault of his, but he had some difficult circumstances to overcome with the injuries and so forth. But he is making very, very good progress physically and on the field in terms of grasping the system and having a better understanding of what's required of him to be a good player.”
Summer additions at wide receiver
“I think Jermaine Burton is the guy that has played with the most consistency out of the receiver group. Of course he was here in the spring, so he's a little ahead of the other guys. Tyler [Harrell] has been sort of in and out a little bit to this point. He has been able to practice on a daily basis but not 100%. I do think that he has shown that he has a lot of ability. We just need to get it channeled in the right direction so that we can use him in a way that's going to be most productive for him and for us.
The freshmen, I think they've all showed some promise. Which ones are going to be able to sustain, that's always the most difficult thing for the younger guys on the team. They've never been through a college season. They've never been through a fall camp probably as demanding as what a college fall camp is. So we'll see who can sort of sustain and continue to grow and develop. And I think there are some guys there that could make a contribution depth wise as well.”
Thought process behind spreading carries at RB
“Well the plan works if the best players play. We don't have a plan to say OK this guy gets this many reps, this guy gets this many reps… This guy’s the best player, then we're going with the best player. And the next best player is going to spell him, and he'll get playing time. If somebody else can contribute in terms of a winning performance, whether that’s on special teams or in a limited role we can create for them, then we’re certainly going to try to do that.
“But it’s good to have depth at that position. It’s a position where we had significant injuries last year. Just let the guys compete. But you compete, and the guy that comes out the best is the guy that has the most opportunities. And that's just how we've always assessed the positions on our team.”
Fall camp guest speakers
“It’s all about messaging. You’ve heard me say this many times before. We're trying to help our players be more successful in life in terms of sort of the psychological disposition, the mindset that they can create for themselves in terms of the habits that they create that's going to contribute to them being successful in whatever they choose to do. And realizing what they do on the field and off the field are things that I think a lot of lessons can be learned from those things that can carry over in their life.
“So when we do evaluations of who's going to speak to the team, we actually do evaluate what is their message? All these people have a message, they’ve spoken somewhere before. And if we think that's something that can impact our players and create interest in them making the choices and decisions and changes they need to make to help them be more successful, that’s how we determined who would like to visit with them.
“Sometimes it's sort of character development. Sometimes it's also behavioral issues, which all come down to choices and decisions as well that can sidetrack your chances of being successful in the future because that's also very, very important. So, understand the consequences of good and bad behavior, cause and effect— all those things are taken into consideration when we try to make an impact and influence on what’ll help these guys make better choices and decisions to have a better chance to be successful.”
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