Day 3 of SEC Media Days is complete, with four more coaches taking the podium.
What did you miss from Nick Saban, Billy Napier, Sam Pittman and Mark Stoops?
Let's take a look:
Nick Saban says Alabama is ready to go after last season:
Last year, Alabama had a very good year on paper with an 11-2 record, but they look shaky and undisciplined at points and were lucky to win as many games as they did.
Saban talked at media days about those expectations and how the team will respond this year when he said,
"I think we have a pretty good mindset on our team. Our team seems to be pretty hungry this year and motivated.” He also talked to ESPN about what happened last year when he said, "I don't think I did a very good job of getting the most out of that team.”
Alabama is normally the big bad wolf of the SEC, but now it might be good that there’s more uncertainty surrounding them. For the first time in a long time, they are entering the season a little under the radar, with many picking LSU to win the West.
Saban also touched on the quarterback situation when he said, “We have three guys that are competing for that position right now,” Saban said. “All of those players are getting better... I don’t think anybody has actually separated themselves yet to this point and I don’t think that it’s something that we’re trying to rush.”
Alabama has question marks this season, but if they answer some, they might just end up back on top of this conference once again.
Oh, did we mention Saban talked a little summer vacation trips as well?
Sam Pittman thinks KJ Jefferson is ready for that next step this year:
Sam Pittman was back at his fourth SEC Media Days, bringing the fun like he always does.
In terms of what's new in Fayetteville, well, one important thing is the coordinators.
Kendal Briles was hired away on offense to TCU, but the offense should stay prolific under Dan Enos. Pittman said as much when he said, “I hired Dan Enos because I think he's a hell of a football coach... I hired him because I thought he was the best play caller I've ever worked with. We're certainly thinking about explosive plays all the time.”
He also touched on how KJ Jefferson should be great in this new offense under Enos.
“I think he's going to fit great with Enos' offense. His extra study off the field has gone through the roof. I think this is going to be the best season he's had. Maybe we throw the ball more than him carrying it. We must keep him healthy. We have some depth behind him, but he's No. 1 for a reason. He's probably going to throw the ball more than he has in the past.”
Arkansas could be a dark horse this year.
Billy Napier touches on moving the Florida-Georgia Rivalry:
The "World's Largest Outdoor Cocktail Party" will be in Jacksonville until at least 2025, but could be moving to campus after that. Kirby Smart has been a proponent of moving it to home stadiums to help with recruiting, and on Wednesday, Napier shared his thoughts on the subject.
“There’s a ton of economic implications relative to these decisions. We are going to have to cross that bridge at some point due to the renovations in Jacksonville. There’s benefit to home-and-home from a recruiting perspective, and I think there’s benefit from an economic standpoint for both athletic departments and institutions.”
The appeal of that rivalry is partly because it’s at a neutral site, but it would be a very interesting to see the game become a home-and-home. Whatever happens we’ll find out sooner than later.
Mark Stoops is excited for Devin Leary joining the program:
Devin Leary transferred from NC State to Kentucky to join the team. He should play well and gets a bonus with Liam Coen back at offensive coordinator for the Wildcats.
Stoops talked about Leary and said, “He has a chip on his shoulder, which I like, tough kid, Jersey kid, fits right in with us.”
He also acknowledged some of the shortcomings the team had last year, especially the offensive line. He said, “I think it’s pretty obvious we have to get back to who we are at Kentucky, and we’ve always been a pretty physical football team. I think we fell short in that area a year ago.”
Kentucky is a wild card this season, but has a chance to be very good if the offense gets figured out.