State teams need to declare their independence

Published 10:43 pm Thursday, July 10, 2008

Today is Independence Day, and in honor of that, I think some of our local college programs need to declare independence from certain things in hopes of making improvements.

At Auburn, I believe the Tigers must declare independence from their conservative football philosophy. This might sound odd because in some ways that’s what Tommy Tuberville did last December when he brought Tony Franklin to the Plains to become Auburn’s new offensive coordinator.

I don’t really think Tuberville has ditched his conservatism in one decision. Obviously, he’s made a step toward that decision, but the philosophy will butt its head during the upcoming football season.

Although Tubby is and always has been known as the Riverboat Gambler, he’s actually been more conservative, especially since he’s been able to recruit superior talent to Auburn than what he had when he started nine and a half years ago.

Auburn doesn’t stretch the field with the passing game. You know Auburn will run the ball most of the time – i.e. two out of three downs. So all your secondary has to do is defend one down.

If Auburn can be free of conservatism, it has a better chance of succeeding this year. Being too aggressive means you might get burned every now and then, but overall, you have to take chances if you are going to win a championship.

In T-town, Alabama needs to declare independence from legal action. This sounds strange because it doesn’t have anything to do with the actual game. What I’m talking about is legal action against the NCAA and also legal action against players.

Over the last few years, the program has had the shadow of the NCAA over Bryant-Denny Stadium. While the university itself hasn’t done anything about the case, there have been several lawsuits filed by people with ties to the university saying the NCAA was wrong. If Alabama is ever going to get back to its glory, all – and I mean all – of these cases have to end.

Also, the other legal action is pretty self-explanatory. Alabama players have to stop getting arrested. Just in the last week, one of Alabama’s better players got kicked off the team for being charged with five counts of selling cocaine.

I know Nick Saban himself is seeing to this, but until all of the Shula-era players are gone, fans may have to hear of a few more arrests.