Archive for November, 2012

29th November
2012
written by admin

Roll Tide, Chicago!

UA fun fact: This week’s fun fact is football related… The “Rammer Jammer Cheer” was a pregame ritual until the early 2000s, chanting “We’re gonna’ beat the hell out of you!”, but this was considered unsportsmanlike and banned. The university also briefly forbade the Million Dollar Band from playing it after games, because of its taunting nature.  In a vote at Homecoming 2005, the question was posed to students of whether the cheer should be banned. 98% of students voted in favor of keeping the cheer. Before the university’s attempt to remove the cheer, it was played before kickoff and at the end of the game. The cheer is now only played in the closing minutes when victory is certain, and is traditionally chanted twice. After Alabama’s victory over the Florida Gators in the 2009 SEC Championship Game, as well as after Alabama’s victory over the Texas Longhorns in the 2010 Citi BCS National Championship Game, the cheer was played nine times.

We didn’t beat the largest victory last weekend, but we were pretty close.  I know we had fun at the Tooth, AR and F&H cheering on the Tide to a 49-0 victory vs. Auburn.  Now it’s time to focus on teaching those Bulldogs to behave!

We know the Houndstooth can get crowded but it’s worth it for the SEC Championship…wants to ensure you have a table Saturday and support the Roll Tide Chicago Scholarship Fund?  Email me at rolltidechicago@gmail.com and we have 2 tables you can rent this Saturday.  Cost is $100 for a 4 top table, all of this money goes to our scholarship fund, you just have to have one person at the Houndstooth 2 hours prior to kickoff to claim the table (1pm Saturday).  Please email me by Friday night to ensure we can reserve one of the tables.

Viewing Parties

Both of our official locations will be busy this Saturday, for the SEC Championship game Alabama vs. Georgia, come cheer on the Tide as they fight for a trip to Miami.  Kickoff is at 3:00 pm CT.  We are also looking at having some Alabama basketball on before the championship kickoff…Alabama is playing Cincinnati let’s cheer on our basketball boys as well this Saturday.

Houndstooth Saloon
3369 N. Clark
Chicago

Another Round
5141 Main St.
Downers Grove

Unofficial games watch location (no memberships/t-shirts for sale) in Arlington Heights-look for Becky Jones & they will have sound and game day specials@

Fox and Hound
910-918 West Dundee Road
Arlington Heights

2012 Roll Tide Chicago T-shirt

Don’t forget about ordering your 2012 Roll Tide Chicago T-shirts before they are gone! They make great holiday presents…so don’t forget to order yours today to ensure you receive your shirts in time for the holidays.  You can order online at http://rolltidechicago.com/?page_id=3 or pickup T-shirts, which include the long sleeve and kids t-shirt only at the Houndstooth or Another Round this Saturday.

We are looking to have some “Beat them Bulldogs” stickers made for Saturday…so we can have some game swag, but this comic is the best one I’ve seen this week!

Roll Tide and see you Saturday at The Houndstooth or Another Round!

Laurel

4th & Goal – The SEC Championship AKA the Brafman Bowl

Before we move forward on what I expect to be a very hard fought game on Saturday let’s take a step back and relive the Iron Bowl for a second. First of all, are we all sure that was an actual SEC team that the Tide played? I don’t mean to knock Auburn (well ok a little) but holy cow that had to be one of the worse excuses for a team that I can remember. Show some pride or some guts. 7 possessions, 7 touchdowns vs. 7 first downs total for the Tigers. Let’s say for the sake of argument that the Tide wasn’t playing next weekend. I honestly think they could have scored 80 points if Saban had kept the starters in. On top of that they have recruiting violations hanging over their heads. http://m.espn.go.com/ncf/story?storyId=8674501&wjb and a new coach who is going to come into the SEC West with Saban at the top of his game, a pissed off LSU and Les Miles, the more than likely Heisman winner in Johnny Football, a better Ole Miss and Miss State team plus a new coach at Arkansas. Good luck with all of that…

A couple of things from the Iron Bowl: Losing Kenny Bell is really going to hurt the Tide this week. He is 2nd in all of college football with a 26 yard average per catch. Cooper, Norwood, and the rest of the guys are going to have to step up big time. I hope he is ready for the bowl game if he can walk by then.

What a rare treat it is to watch an Alabama QB game after game complete long passes right on the money like AJ did to Cooper and Norwood this week. The mind wonders back how good the Tide could have been if Brody C. had ever learned to do that.

Laurel has mentioned this in the past but I will repeat it. If you are out of town and want to watch the game, check out the alumni web page.  I watched the Iron Bowl with the Cincinnati Chapter and it was like a blast from the past. They are just getting off the ground and have a great fan base and a bar. It was a lot of fun to meet new Bama fans and I was shocked when I found out that a girl from my high school had travelled down to the Capstone 8 years after I had graduated.

Finally in case you didn’t see it this never ever gets old: http://www.al.com/alabamafootball/index.ssf/2012/11/watch_tide_fans_celebrate_thei.html

Ok, now onto the more important game the game this weekend vs. UGA otherwise known in the Brafman household as the Brafman Bowl. Why is that? Because for some strange reason two kids from Cincinnati went to schools down south. My sister is a Bulldog through and through so it was fun this past weekend teasing her a little.  My all-time favorite Bama win including the two national title games was the Bama win in the famous blackout game from ‘08. So, not only do I have to root for the Tide this weekend for all the normal reasons but if they lose I have to listen to my younger sister crow about it for oh about forever…

I think that UGA is going to give the Tide all they can handle. I am more worried about this game than any game over the last two year and I include both LSU games from last year and every game this year. They just match up so well with us. It’s like looking in the mirror. Very good QB who doesn’t turn the ball over check, two headed monster running backs check, two wideouts lost for the year check, beasts on defense check and check. Don’t believe me read this preview of the game and look at the numbers midway down the article: http://www.saturdaydownsouth.com/2012/alabama-vs-georgia-preview/

I have nightmares of Aaron Murray having all day in the pocket and picking our defense apart like Manzell and LSU did. But with all that said I think that Bama runs the ball down UGA’s throats. If there is one part of the Bulldogs that is a little weak it is the run defense. Plus, in the two toughest games that UGA has played they haven’t been world beaters on offense. And until proven otherwise I will pick Saban over any coach especially one who in 11 years has not exactly won the big games. Bama close and I mean close 17-14. Win or lose let’s once again get down on our hands and knees and thank the football Gods or Mal Moore that we have Coach Saban. All you can ask is that your coach gets you the chance to play for the national title. Coach Saban has done that in 5 of the last 6 seasons; can’t ask for more than that.

The crazy numbers from the weekend:

  • Facing a regular-season slate that included nine bowl-eligible teams (by comparison, Alabama faced six and Georgia five), the Irish allowed just two touchdown drives of 60-plus yards and two rushing touchdowns the entire year.
  • SEC Champ game tix range from $320 to 6k, and ACC Champ game tix start at $4.50. Not a typo.
  • Bear Bryant was 0-4 vs. Notre Dame what that has to do with anything now is beyond me I just found it interesting.
  • Vanderbilt, the Commodores, continued their rise under second-year coach James Franklin by winning six straight games to close out the regular season, the program’s longest winning streak since 1955. Vandy’s 8-4 record is its best since 1982, and its five games scoring 40 or more points are the most for the Commodores since 1915. “When you’re throwing numbers out about breaking records from 1952, 1948 and 1915, to me that’s impressive,” said Franklin.
  • 6 #SEC teams in the #BCS top 10. All six teams have at least 10 wins on the season.
  • If Georgia beats Bama on Saturday they would have the worst loss by margin (28 pts) of any BCS title game participant.
  • The top 8 teams in the SEC were 30-0 this season against the bottom 6 teams.
  • I wish I was this “lucky” with a 7.5 Million dollar buy out Auburn is on the hook to pay my man Gene $208,443.00 a month not to get his brain kicked in by UGA, LSU and Bama for the next 5 years! I thought that was the most insane stat of the week until yesterday when…
  • The former head of the Baseball players union Marvin Miller died at 93. When he started the baseball union in 1966 the average player’s salary was $6000 it is now over $430,000. To put that in perspective A-Rod makes $6000 every half inning.

In this week in things I didn’t know until I was a Dad: It is crazy how much little kids pick up and remember. Due to my love of M&M’s I started to give Maya a couple if she ate her dinner or smiled or you know acted cute. So pretty much any time she asked for them. Well we hid them from her (along with her candy from Halloween) last night out of the blue she walks over to the drawer where they are and started to ask for them. I am learning that I am a chump or completely whipped or both because I of course gave her a couple. How she remembered where they were was pretty impressive.

See ya at the Tooth on Saturday be ready for a slug fest

RTR

Marc

 

 

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23rd November
2012
written by admin

Roll Tide, Chicago!

UA fun fact: This week’s fun fact is football related…its Iron Bowl week here is some history on the series: Auburn and Alabama played their first football game in Lakeview Park in Birmingham, Alabama, on February 22, 1893. Auburn (then named the Agricultural and Mechanical College of Alabama) won 32–22, before an estimated crowd of 5,000. As if a signal of the future, disagreement between the schools began immediately, tensions further built, after both 1906 and 1907 contests the series was stopped but renewed again in 1948.  Largest Victory by Alabama 55, Auburn 0 1948 – Can we beat that this weekend?

Last weekend was crazy & I thankfully got home in time to watch the second half of the two games that put Bama back in the National Championship picture.  I just have to say thank you Baylor & Stanford.   I will leave the Notre Dame talk for now to Marc & 4th& Goal, but once we both have a ticket to Miami will I start for now I will just say Roll Tide!

Viewing Parties

Both of our locations will open for this week’s game, come celebrate some of this weekend’s Thanksgiving family time with your Alabama alumni family and stop your holiday shopping for a few hours Saturday afternoon for Alabama vs. Auburn.  Kickoff is at 2:30 pm.

Houndstooth Saloon
3369 N. Clark
Chicago

Another Round
5141 Main St.
Downers Grove

We also have a member, Becky Jones, who has coordinating an unofficial watch party in Arlington Heights at The Fox and Hound, 910-918 West Dundee Road Arlington Heights, IL 60004 they will have the Alabama vs. Auburn game on Saturday with sound…thank you Becky!

2012 Roll Tide Chicago T-shirt

Don’t forget about ordering your 2012 Roll Tide Chicago T-shirts before they are gone! They make great holiday presents…so don’t forget to order yours today to ensure you receive your shirts in time for the holidays.  You can order online at http://rolltidechicago.com/?page_id=3 or pickup T-shirts, which include the long sleeve and kids t-shirt only at the Houndstooth or Another Round this Saturday.

 

Roll Tide and see you Saturday at The Houndstooth or Another Round!

Laurel

4th & Goal – Iron Bowl

What a difference a week makes huh? As you could tell last week I was a little fired up after the loss to A&M and then Saturday night in the span of 3 hours it’s like that game never happened. Somehow the Tide is back in the driver’s seat and controls their destiny once again. We’ll save the SEC talk for next week because now it’s IRON BOWL week. I am not nor do a claim to be an Alabama football historian so for those of you that are lifelong fans forgive me; but since 1995 when I attended my first Iron Bowl this game seems to have the least amount of hype of any game that I can remember. Maybe it’s that the spread is 34 points (a record) or maybe it’s that Auburn is on its death bed with my boy Gene. Or the fact that everyone including, every single Auburn fan, I know is 100% convinced that the Tide is going to roll. All I know is this: Crazy things happen in rivalry games. From Punt Bama Punt, to Bo Goes over top, to a crazy 9-0 game in the sleet in 2000, weird things happen in this game. Now don’t get me wrong unless the Tide forgets how to get to BD on Saturday I see no way that Saban lets this team overlook the Tigers. But let’s just remember that in the Iron Bowl anything can happen.  Final score Bama 42-Auburn 7, but it could be worse if Saban keeps the starters in all game (which I sure hope we don’t need to).

Don’t you love dumb coaches? http://www.saturdaydownsouth.com/2012/baylor-coach-sec-comments/

My advice for all of you when dealing with friends, family, etc… who want to talk up Notre Dame and Ohio State or say that the Tide doesn’t belong at #2. First Notre Dame: Let them enjoy it keep your mouth shut and say over and over I hope we play you guys in the BCS title game. If two weeks ago proved anything else it’s that the Tide struggle vs. mobile quick QB’s (like say Oregon or K-State have).  Who does Alabama do well against? QB’s like Notre Dames who take their sweet time in the pocket and don’t always make the best throws. It’s been a long; long time since ND was any good so my advice is let them talk.

As for OSU just forward them this story and ask them again who they are mad at more? Jim Tressel, their AD, or all of the above. If they answer with anything else show them this story. Also remind them that the Big ten is so bad that they don’t have a single team in the top 15 and that even an 11-0 OSU team is ranked 4th right now: http://buckeyextra.dispatch.com/content/stories/2012/11/19/bowl-ban-leaves-fans-wondering-what-if.html

Iron Bowl and college football stats:

  • In an interesting statistical aberration, Chizik and Saban have made one unbeaten run each through the SEC, including the SEC Championship Game. Otherwise, Chizik’s best SEC record is the same as Saban’s worst: 4-4. Chizik is the Iron Bowl away from hitting bottom at 0-8 in the league.
  • Top 5 #SEC Rushing Yards:
    1. Johnny Manziel 1,114
    2. Todd Gurley 1,041
    3. Mike Gillislee 964
    4. Tre Mason 920
    5. LaDarius Perkins 895

I found this interesting in that most school would hand off the ball to Lacy and Yeldon 30+ times a game. Saban makes it a point to recruit multiple running backs (like this guy) http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1412325-alabama-football-recruit-derrick-henry-breaks-high-school-rushing-record?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=newsletter&utm_campaign=recruiting and tells them that they won’t have to carry the load all the while making sure they are ready for the NFL. Also that if Johnny Football wants to stay undercenter he will stop trying to run because one of these days a team is going to lay him out.

  • Lane Kiffin’s Trojans on Sunday became the first AP preseason No. 1 team since 1964 to drop out of the rankings entirely Let’s hear it for a great coach..cough, cough.
  • 18 years, 11 months and 26 days: Time it took for Notre Dame to get back to No. 1. That is why they are permitted to be excited. Remember how we felt in 2010?

This week in things I didn’t know until I was a Dad: Taking your kid to the circus for the first time has to be on the top ten list of my favorite things I’ve done with Maya. When the parade of elephants walked out her mouth literally fell down and she was jumping on my lap. By far the highlight of my day at the Greatest Show on Earth.

In this week’s installment of I forgot what it’s like to be married to a crazy pregnant wife: My buddy Kirz was out of the country last Saturday on vacation and called me from the airport Sunday afternoon to discuss the weekend. This was at least the 3rd or 4th person that I had spoken to about this already so she turned to me and said “Don’t you ever get tired of talking about Alabama, the SEC and Notre Dame? Now correct me if I’m wrong gang but isn’t that like asking if you get tired of Breathing?

I’ll be at the Cincinnati Alumni Chapter viewing party this weekend. Have a great Turkey day and remember you could be getting this card in the mail on Sunday to renew your Auburn season tickets:

RTR

Marc

 

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17th November
2012
written by admin
Roll Tide, Chicago!
UA fun fact: From a small campus of seven buildings in the wilderness on the main road between Tuscaloosa and Huntsville (now University Boulevard) in the 1830s, UA has grown to a massive 1,970-acre campus in the heart of Tuscaloosa today. There are 297 buildings on campus containing some 10,600,000 square feet of space.
Regarding last week’s game, I have nothing to add that you can’t read elsewhere, especially below in Marc’s 4th & Goal.  Roll Tide Roll! Is all I will add!

Viewing Parties
It’s a day game this Saturday with kickoff at 11:21 am, I know you might be tempted to skip this week at the Houndstooth or Another Round, but day games against lesser foes are actually a great opportunity to get to know your fellow Bama alums. There’s more room to move and actually places to sit down and you don’t have to scream to talk to your friends. So join us at the Tooth for what we hope is a relaxing afternoon.
W. Carolina’s is a Division I-AA team and their mascot is the Catamount…all I could say is what is a Catamount?  Wild cats of the “catamount variety”, including the bobcat, cougar or lynx, have roamed the southern Appalachian Mountains for years….learned something new this week didn’t we.

2012 Roll Tide Chicago T-shirt
Don’t forget about ordering your 2012 Roll Tide Chicago T-shirts before they are gone! They make great holiday presents…so don’t forget to order yours today to ensure you receive your shirts in time for the holidays.  You can order online at http://rolltidechicago.com/?page_id=3 or pickup T-shirts, which include the long sleeve and kids t-shirt only at the Houndstooth or Another Round this Saturday.
Roll Tide and I will not be at the Houndstooth Saturday, but say hi to Lisa or Casey and if you are at Another Round say hi to Paul for me!
Laurel
4th & Goal
If two weeks ago was the Rally in Death Valley than last Saturday was the What If Bowl.
Being that I am 36 and a father of 1 with another on the way I try and put sports in perspective. I really try and remember that there are better and more important things in life. But games like Saturday just burn me to no end. I didn’t think that any loss could bother me as much as the Cam Newton Iron Bowl loss a few years ago but I could chalk that one up to a better team came into BD Stadium with the best college player in 20 years and beat us. That was not the case on Saturday. I’m taking nothing away from the amazing Johnny “football” Manzell who did just about anything he wanted for most of the game. But when you have 1st and goal from the 6 and you run the ball only once and on 2nd down no less it just confuses me to no end. I don’t want to hear that A&M was stacking the line or that they were expecting the run. I don’t want to hear that if the pass on 4th down had worked we would be celebrating a great play call. Alabama football as we know it under Coach Saban is a run first run often and run through teams. We don’t (or didn’t) care what defense they were playing our offensive line and running backs were good enough to beat you. Bring your best and we will blow you off the line. Bring in more guys and we will run it down your throat anyway. But over the last two weeks for some reason the Tide has gone away from that. Take a look at this breakdown of the offensive plays if you don’t believe me:   http://www.saturdaydownsouth.com/2012/back-to-basics-ground-game-essential-to-crimson-tides-success/
It doesn’t take a football lifer to see that the reason the Tide has struggled the last two weeks is because we have gotten away from what has brought us this far in the first place.
RUN THE BALL!!
There was a lot of nonsense written and said (including the insane ramblings of Lou Holtz who said that not only has the game passed Nick Saban buy but that he should retire after this game) that the A&M win is a turning point in the SEC and that all of a sudden the spread is going to be the norm while old defensive teams like LSU, Bama and even UGA are going to be put out to bed. My response to that is BULL. Do you know what slows down fast paced offensive teams like A&M and Oregon? Keeping their offense on the sideline and grinding out drives on offense. Do you know how one does that? By you guessed it RUNNING THE BALL.
Bill Simmons from ESPN and Grantland has always written that if your team wins a title that gives them a 5 year no criticism window to operated under  and I am fine with that except in the following: When you have first and goal from the 6 and the supposed strength of your team is your offensive line and you run the ball once the question needs to be asked. OK I feel better now. Moving on…
The worse part about the loss as all of you know is that now we are on the outside looking in for the BCS title game. Here is a good breakdown of what we need to happen to get back to Miami:http://aol.sportingnews.com/ncaa-football/story/2012-11-13/bcs-breakdown-oregon-kansas-state-notre-dame-alabama-analysis-schedule-opponents?eadid=EL/SICOM&sct=hp_t11_a1
In case you are wondering I will handy cap the rest of the season this way: Notre Dame will lose to USC IF and it’s a big IF USC jumps out early to a lead. Notre Dame can’t score against air most of the time. Kansas State I believe runs the table but Texas in two weeks will give them all they can handle. The big question mark is Oregon. They have the hardest stretch and in case you haven’t been paying attention they beat up. 4 offensive lineman, their entire starting secondardy , starting QB, and running back. A team like Stanford that is big upfront and can pound the ball could give them trouble. Plus just like how the Tide tried to do everything they could to beat Auburn a couple of years ago the Civil War next weekend will be throw the record out the door type of game. If everything holds up it looks like the Tide would play Clemson in the Sugar Bowl. Wow that is a ratings winner. Will lightening strike? As they say that is why you play the game…
Stats from last week:
·        Bama became only the 4th #1 team to ever play three teams ranked in the top 15 in back to back to back weeks. The only #1 to make it through without losing was the amazing 2001 Miami team.
·        Of the 23 current starters — 12 listed on the offense — 16 of them are underclassmen and, barring early leaps for the NFL, would return in 2013.  On the two-deep depth chart, 36 of the 46 players are non-seniors. Bama will be just fine next year.
·        Bama is -5 in turnovers the last two weeks it’s not hard to see why they are struggling
·        The Gene watch is in full effect down on the plains. But if they do fire him after what I think most of us expect to be one of the bigger blowouts in Iron Bowl history take a look at how much Auburn will owe him not to coach: http://bleacherreport.com/tb/d8WHS?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=newsletter&utm_campaign=college-football
This has nothing to do with the SEC but did you see that the Big East next year is splitting into two divisions? All well and good until you see how they break down:

East Division
UCF
Cincinnati
Connecticut
Louisville
Rutgers
USF

West Division
Boise State
Houston
Memphis
San Diego State
SMU
Temple
I’m not the smartest guy in the world but isn’t Temple in Philly?
This week in things I didn’t know until I was a Dad: Maya now likes to sing but only by herself. So if she is humming Twinkle Twinkle Little Star and I start chiming in she will tell me to be quite. I guess I don’t sound like Sinatra after all..
RTR
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