While the 2013 season certainly did not turn out the way the Alabama Crimson Tide hoped it would, things could definitely be worse in Tuscaloosa. After all, Alabama has won three national championships over the last five years while compiling a record of 60-7. That’s correct, 60 wins against just seven losses in five years.
Alabama was the odds-on favorite to win the BCS National Championship again in 2013. The return of quarterback A.J. McCarron, running back T.J. Yeldon and wide receiver Amari Cooper gave the Tide plenty of weapons on offense. And, as always, Nick Saban did not rebuild the defense, he reloaded with tons of talent.
After the 11-2 season, many players departed the Tide, and the 2014 season looks to be a rebuilding one for Alabama (which probably means they only win 10 games and don’t appear in the Southeastern Conference title game).
But if opponents thought that a “down” season in Tuscaloosa would hurt Alabama’s recruiting, they were dead wrong. Alabama currently has 24 players committed to the 2014 recruiting class. ESPN ranks 17 of those 24 among the 300 best players in the class. That’s the most Top 300 commits by any school in the SEC (the LSU Tigers are second with 14).
Despite last season’s slip-up, Saban remains the current king of college football. He wins games. He sends players to the NFL. And he does it the right way, by recruiting talented players, then teaching them to get the most out of their physical abilities.
And while the Auburn Tigers may have been the Cinderella darlings of the 2013 season, Saban and the Tide remain as the ones to beat. Just ask those that are recruiting against them.
Tim Letcher is a contributing writer for RantSports.com and a member of the Football Writers Association of America. Follow him on Twitter @TimLetcher , on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.