How Alabama’s surprising savior made Nick Saban believe

ATLANTA — You’ve had at least a day to process what you never expected to see. You’ve had time to learn how to pronounce the last name — “You say tongue first, O-VY-LO-A,” Tua Tagovailoa once explained — you just learned. Now, you’re probably convinced the teenager you

Alabama star revealed himself in most crushing moment of truth

We could take the easy and obvious route in praising the way Jalen Hurts handled one of the most devastating public benchings we’ll ever see. If we want to simply contrast Hurts’ remarkable team-first, team-only reaction to getting Wally Pipped by a freshman named Tua Tagovailoa in Alabama’s epic

Nick Saban’s biggest gamble makes him greatest of all time

ATLANTA — When Alabama strangled the life out of LSU six years ago in the national championship, it seemed impossible to be more prepared. When the Crimson Tide forced undefeated Notre Dame to tap out the next year, Nick Saban looked like he was at the height of

Familiarity will be Achilles heel in Alabama vs. Georgia final

ATLANTA — Right now, the king — Nick Saban — is still the king, and the SEC’s new prince – Kirby Smart — still lives in an Alabama-sized shadow. Smart, 42, still refers to his longtime boss as “Coach Saban,” and the 66-year-old legend — in the national title

Wild weekend gave these title games much-needed meaning

Saturday was a win for college football, a significant victory for the sport that is already enjoying a wildly unpredictable and thrilling regular season. Losses by Notre Dame and Georgia went a long way to guaranteeing heavy drama for championship weekend three weeks from now. It cleared up the

Can Notre Dame get in? Crazy playoff scenarios could be on tap

The only two things predictable about this college football season are Alabama and upheaval. Parity reigns. Unpredictability is a constant. Over the past three weeks, seven top-10 teams have fallen. This past weekend alone, previously undefeated teams Clemson, Washington and Washington State all lost, losing to the likes of Syracuse, Arizona

How Clemson took the Alabama route to lasting excellence

The drop-off was supposed to be severe. The “R” word — rebuilding — was being tossed around about the offense. Last year’s national championship was going to heal this year’s wounds. That was the talk everywhere but in Death Valley, where winning has become expected. We’ve seen programs reload like this before,

How one injury threw college football season into chaos

For three quarters, it was a perfect night. The game equaled the hype, billed by the organizers of the Chick-Fil-A Kickoff Classic as the “G.O.A.T.,” as in the greatest opener of all time. It was a defensive struggle, physical and featuring big hitting and little offense. There was little separation between

Jets want rookie wideout to get all his surgeries out of the way

Jets coach Todd Bowles provided some clarity on when rookie wide receiver ArDarius Stewart suffered two injuries that required surgery. It sounded like Stewart had thumb and groin injuries before the Jets drafted him when Bowles described them Wednesday. But Stewart injured his thumb in rookie minicamp in May. When the

Jets want rookie wideout to get all his surgeries out of the way

Jets coach Todd Bowles provided some clarity on when rookie wide receiver ArDarius Stewart suffered two injuries that required surgery. It sounded like Stewart had thumb and groin injuries before the Jets drafted him when Bowles described them Wednesday. But Stewart injured his thumb in rookie minicamp in May. When the

Jets want rookie wideout to get all his surgeries out of the way

Jets coach Todd Bowles provided some clarity on when rookie wide receiver ArDarius Stewart suffered two injuries that required surgery. It sounded like Stewart had thumb and groin injuries before the Jets drafted him when Bowles described them Wednesday. But Stewart injured his thumb in rookie minicamp in May. When the

Jets want rookie wideout to get all his surgeries out of the way

Jets coach Todd Bowles provided some clarity on when rookie wide receiver ArDarius Stewart suffered two injuries that required surgery. It sounded like Stewart had thumb and groin injuries before the Jets drafted him when Bowles described them Wednesday. But Stewart injured his thumb in rookie minicamp in May. When the

Jets want rookie wideout to get all his surgeries out of the way

Jets coach Todd Bowles provided some clarity on when rookie wide receiver ArDarius Stewart suffered two injuries that required surgery. It sounded like Stewart had thumb and groin injuries before the Jets drafted him when Bowles described them Wednesday. But Stewart injured his thumb in rookie minicamp in May. When the

Jets want rookie wideout to get all his surgeries out of the way

Jets coach Todd Bowles provided some clarity on when rookie wide receiver ArDarius Stewart suffered two injuries that required surgery. It sounded like Stewart had thumb and groin injuries before the Jets drafted him when Bowles described them Wednesday. But Stewart injured his thumb in rookie minicamp in May. When the