Archive for January, 2013

14th January
written by admin

Roll Tide Ya’ll!

What a great finish…Back to Back National Championships if you were in Miami we hope you had a great trip to everyone was here in Chicago and came out to the Houndstooth or Another Round thank you for helping make it an incredible night. I will leave the rest of the game talk to Marc in the 4th and Goal, but wanted to share with you the press RTC did before and after the NCG.  Also, stay tuned for more volunteer actives for our chapter and other events that will take place in the off-season before we hit the road to #16.

Here are links to some of the stories RTC was part of:

This story aired on ABC 33/40 in Birmingham on 1/6/13 & is mainly about the Houndstooth, but you will see a familiar face or two:


This story aired on  WGN on 1/7/13 while the championship was still going on and showed the Houndstooth and our Alabama fans cheering and a bit of our own Jeff Goode dancing!

This story aired on WGN the morning of 1/7/13.  Bill Watt and his son are the ones featured in this story:

Hunter Byington (Class of ’75) and Will Byington (Class of 2000) were interviewed for a short article in the Naperville Sun about Bama grads in the land of Notre Dame. Just wish the reporter had used my whole quote about Alabama traveling well and having fans everywhere like the Cubs instead of just saying Alabama is the Cubs of college football – we all know that isn’t true! Roll Tide!

Here is a local Chicago website that did a story on where to watch the game in the city Monday from the ND and Bama side of things.

Enjoy the articles and news stories. RTR!!  Keep watch for emails and postings on our Facebook page and for offseason activities.

Roll Tide!!!


4th & Goal

Wow!! That is all I could say when I talked to my Dad after the game. I’ve said it before but it needs to be said again. We all have to take a step back and realize the history that we are watching on the field. Three national titles in 4 years, back to back National titles! Tying the all-time record for most wins in a 4 year period (49) (to put that in perspective in my 4 years the Tide won 29 games) and if you include the 2008 season 61 wins with only 7 losses. How is that possible? How is it possible for a team to lose 7-8 players to the NFL and come back and win again? You know we all laugh at Coach Saban when he talks about each team being different and how next year’s team is 0-0 but if you think about it he is right. This isn’t like the Jordan era Bulls or the Yankees with Jeter, Mo Rivera and Bernie Williams. Heck this isn’t even Duke or Florida winning back to back titles in basketball. The turnover in college football is huge and to be this good, no this GREAT over the past 5 seasons is simply amazing. And to think that if they get the o-line figured out (the news Fluker is leaving isn’t a shock) we are going to be right back in the mix again. Take it all in everyone we might never see anything like this again down at the Capstone. And when you hear me complain next year about why the Tide isn’t running the ball more remind me of this.

Some random quotes from the game and the couple of days after Please note that these are all paraphrasing since I can’t remember all of them word for word: Pregame addition:

  • Clearly no one has learned a thing, because here we are at the conclusion of the 2012 season, and the most popular college football topic for the past 38 days has been: “Does Notre Dame have any chance against Alabama?” Let’s think about that for a second. Does an undefeated team that led the nation in scoring defense stand a chance against a team that lost once at home and came within a last-minute pass-deflection of possibly missing the title game altogether? You Think..Si.writer Stu Mandell in his Colum on Monday before kickoff
  • “I’m picking Notre Dame in a HUGE upset 24-21” Mike Greenberg on Mike and Mike on ESPN
  • I don’t know what he said but Lee Corso dressing like the Lucky Charms mascot on the set of Game Day before the game.
  • “The fact that Alabama is staying at a hotel on South Beach with one of the best night clubs in the world could hurt them.” I think that Notre Dame has the right idea staying 12 miles outside of Miami” Jessie Palmer ESPN Talking Head on Sports Center sometime last week
  • I think the game is going to be close but in the end I don’t think Notre Dame has enough offense to win. Plus Alabama will wear down Notre Dame on the ground like they have everybody else the last two seasons. Alabama 24-Notre Dame 14 Marc Brafman to anyone in the Feld Entertainment office who asked me on Monday and in the last installment of 4th & Goal.

I worked in sports radio for 5 years, I understand that you have to pump up both teams and try and make sure that the game is entertaining to get ratings but what two teams did these guys watch this year? I think all of us living here in the Midwest knew before the game that ND had a punchers chance if the Tide turned the ball over made dumb penalties or Golsen turned into Johnny Football but I think of ND as a glorified Big Ten team. And friends as we all know no Big Ten team is going to beat an SEC team that is primed for battle like the Tide was.

Quotes from the game itself:

  • “Lacy bolts middle up the middle-still going ENDZONE- Eddie Lacy scores the first touchdown of the night” ESPN Brent Musburger 12:10 seconds left in first quarter
  • “Jessie Williams #54 is in as a blocking back they are going to throw TOUCHDOWN The other Williams Michael Williams the TE” ESPN Brent Musburger 6:14 second left first quarter
  • Right now they have two drives over 80 yards as Yeldon takes it across TOUCHDOWN Alabama! ESPN Brent Musburger 14:57 left in 2nd quarter
  • Two receivers to the left McCarron throwing all the way drops it off to Lacy in a footrace spins TOUCHDOWN Tide Rolling again! ESPN Brent Musburger :33 seconds left in 1st half
  • Heather Cox ESPN Sideline reporter to Notre Dame Coach Brian Kelly at Halftime:
    • Cox: Where do the fixes come from in the 2nd half?
    • Kelly: Well maybe if Alabama forgets to come back for the 2nd half (this might be my favorite quote from a coach of all time)
    • Coach Saban had a slightly different take at half time: I think we played well offensively,” said Saban as he went into the locker room. “We controlled the line of scrimmage.  “We just gotta play 60 minutes. This game is not over, and our players need to understand that.” (I said the same thing to my friends who were at the game and texting me all of whom started calling me Debbie Downer.)
    • Well, I tell you, you quarterbacks, you get all the good-looking women! What a beautiful woman!,” So if you’re a youngster at Alabama, start getting the football out and throw it around the backyard with pops” Brent Musburger talking up AJ’s girlfriend Kathrine Webb (My favorite part of this is that Brent used the term “Pops” which I believe went out at about the same time that Miss America was must see TV.) So to recap the most talked about pre-game video was the Dad who’s son surprised him with tickets to the game and used the term “PAW” which I believe went out of style around the time of the Beverly Hillbillies and now Musburger is using the term Pops.) And yes this is the kind of stuff that keeps me up at night.


  • Roll TIDE! The entire back two rooms of the Houndstooth after Cooper scored the 5th touchdown of the night which promped all of us even me to do a shot of something called wild fire.
  • “And that’s it Alabama has become the first school since Nebraska to win back to back National Titles” Brent Musburger ESPN final call

Before we get into the post game quotes a couple of quick things on the game. The first half was the best half of football I think I have ever seen Alabama play. Minus the fumbled punt that was as good a half of football as a team could play. If you could bottle a half of football and roll it out all the time that is what I would choice. You know me I’m always a 3 yards and a cloud of dust guy but the numbers are striking: 265 yards rushing, 264 passing. The perfect balance (now if only they had run the ball vs. A&M…ok, ok I’ll stop)

Barret Jones will go down as one of the 4-5 best players in Bama history along with Joe Willie, Ozzie Newsome, Ingram, Dwight Stephenson, C Bennett and John Hannah) and like I’ve said before depending on how he does next year AJ might be the best of all time (college addition).

Post game quotes:

  • “We were 5 yards away from not being in this game. We are going to have to work on that” Nick Saban to the ESPN game day crew after the game
  • Believe it or not I am really happy right now. Nick Saban without a hint of a smile during his post game news conference
  • I am going to take 2 days off and then start up again. We are behind in recruiting…Nick Saban with a straight face to the ESPN game day crew after the game while they all laughted
  • “ As usual I was right” Barret Jones to the ESPN Game Day Crew and AJ talking about the shoving match they had during the 4th quarter
  • Nix:”(Bama OL) did not dominate, I hope no one uses that word. I don’t think they physically dominated us and took us out to the woodshed (I guess he was too busy sucking wind by the middle of the 2nd quarter to realize how dumb this quote sounded.)
  • “Pretty much when Lacy scored the first touchdown” When both Herbstreet and Todd Blackledge when asked by Mike and Mike on Tuesday morning thought the game was going to be a rout
  • And finally the reason that the Tide could be back in the Rose Bowl next year doing it all over again: I’m already thinking about two weeks from now when I have to get back and get ready for next season,” said sophomore tackle Cyrus Kouandijo. “We’re going for it again next year. And again. And again.”

Had enough yet? Too bad theirs more!!

Stats of the game:

  • 0 times Notre Dame had let up drives of 80 yards or more this season.
  • 3 amount of times they let up drives or 80 yards or more to the Tide.
  • 0 times Notre Dame gave up 100 yard rushers this season.
  • 2 times that Alabama had rushers of over 100 yards (Both Eddie and TJ rushed for over 100 yards.)
  • 0 number of times that ND had given up 100 yards to a receiver.
  • 1 times Alabama had 100 yards receiving (A Cooper had over 100 yards.)
  • After five offensive snaps, Alabama led 7-0. After 15 offensive snaps, it was 14-0. After 23, it was 21-0.
  • 21-0 score before ND had 3 first downs.
  • 7 straight SEC BCS champs.
  • 4 straight years that the Title has come home to Alabama.
  • 9 Most times Alabama has been ranked #1 in final AP poll (most All Time.)
  • The game was the 2nd most watched game in cable history 17,216,000 households (this does not include all the bars, clubs etc.)
  • 4 titles that Coach Saban has won joining Bear (6) John McCay and Frank Leyhey with 4 each.
  • Dating back to a 2010 BCS triumph over Texas and extending through last year’s 21-0 win over LSU, there was a time in this contest that ‘Bama had run off 69 unanswered points and held opponents scoreless for nearly 107 minutes across three title games.

Stats non BCS title game addition:

  • N. Western of all Big Ten teams became the first Big Ten school to beat two SEC Teams in the same season
  • Per USA Today, 475,200 babies were born in US since Notre Dame played (this was before Monday.)
  • Big Ten is 2-13 on New Year’s Day games in past 3 years.
  • 0 amount of times that the Bengals throw the ball or even looked at AJ Green in the first half of their playoff game. Any wonder why they lost?
  • 0 Inductees into the baseball hall of fame this year. (For more on this rant just e-mail me) My take it’s a joke
  • 12 but it could 200 at this rate the number of players leaving LSU for the draft.

Finally since this has gone on long enough

In things I didn’t know until I was a dad: Just when you think you have your kids pegged they turn the tables on you. Maya since the day she was born has always loved taking a bath or a shower. But for the last two weeks it has been hard to get her into either. If you’ve ever tried giving your child a bath when they want to be anywhere but the bath tub you will know what I am talking about.

And last but not least it’s been my pleasure writing this every week. Thanks for all the feedback and I’ll post things either to our Facebook group or on the e-mails whenever Laurel wants. Have a great offseason puff up your chests with Pride and remember It’s GREAT TO BE FROM ALABAMA!!



4th January
written by admin
Roll Tide Chicago!
If you can’t make it to the game in Miami, plan on watching it with the Chicago Alabama Alumni Chapter at the Houndstooth in Wrigleyville or Another Round in Downers Grove.
Game kick-off is at 7:30 pm CT on Monday Jan. 7, 2013.
Arrive EARLY if you want to ensure yourself a seat or place to stand, tables at the Houndstooth are all reserved – the Houndstooth will be opening at 3:30 pm for all us BAMA fans and the Dark Horse a block from the Tooth will also be an Alabama (game and sound) bar on Monday.
We expect to make both our bars the best place to be outside of Miami come on down and join us!
Houndstooth Saloon
3369 N. Clark

Another Round
5141 Main St.
Downers Grove

During the game, we’ll have our squares game, selling our 2012 Chicago alumni memberships that include t-shirts.
Membership to the Chicago Alabama Alumni Assoc. (RTC)
$25 White Membership – Includes 1 T-shirt
$40 Crimson Membership – Includes 2 T-shirts
$60 Houndstooth Membership – Includes 4 T-shirts
$30 for a 2012 Roll Tide Chicago T-shirt without membership
Payments will be accepted via cash, credit or check.
Both the Houndstooth and Another Round will have Beat the Irish! Stickers to hand out to Alabama fans…so make sure you ask for one when you get to either bar!
See you at The Houndstooth in Wrigleyville or Another Round in Downers Grove and Roll Tide!
4th & Goal

The big game is finally here. Is it me or does it seem like the SEC championship was 40+ days ago? Oh wait, what is that you say it was 40 days ago? Of all the problems that college football’s postseason has this has to be #1. And for once I am happy about this. Because if the Tide had to play Notre Dame the week after the SEC championship they would have lost. But the dopes that run college football have degreed that we must wait forever to play again so the Tide should be healthy (are you listening B Jones foot – B Jones just said he is ‘Ready to Roll’) In the great tradition of Bill Simmons and Joe Posnanski here is a long run down on the game:

So let’s get down to it. Having read and listened to a good bit of pre-game hype the one thing that I keep hearing is that all of us (Tide fans) are going to be surprised by how good the ND defense is that it is an “SEC” type of defense that they are very physical blah blah. And yet in all of that talk I don’t hear anyone answer with well yes they might be like an SEC defense but over the last two years the Tide has gone 23-2 vs. SEC defense week in and week out. And somehow they have won a national title beating a team last year (LSU) that was supposed to be one of the great SEC teams in the last 15 years. The fact that ND made their defensive hay vs. the gawd awful Big Ten and ACC schedule (along with stopping Stanford and Oklahoma which they do get credit for) come on. I’m taking nothing away from ND they have a very good defense and their strength stopping the run and red zone defense is impressive but come on. I just can’t see them stopping Eddie and TJ all game (no one has) or slowing down AJ and Coop/Norwood etc. Not to mention Brian Kelly is a good coach but until anyone beats Coach Saban when he has a motivated bowl team (I will take to my grave that no one, not Saban, not the players, no one cared about the Utah Sugar Bowl) the edge goes to the Tide.

The Tide knows what it is playing for. A chance to be ranked among the greatest dynasty’s in college football history. Not even Bear won three titles in 4 years, and no team has won back to back titles since the great Nebraska teams in the mid 90’s. This group of players is playing to write their name in history not just Bama history but all time history. And don’t buy for a second that Saban doesn’t know or care about this. He lives for this stuff to be put up in the list of the greatest coaches of all time (Bear, Frank Leahy, Fielding H. Yost) with coaches that have won 4 or more titles is amazing considering that he is young enough and I think hungry enough to keep adding to the list. As for the players in the long history of Alabama football if you think these guys don’t understand how amazing and special this game could be for them you are fooling yourself. Three titles in four years, if it comes to pass I still have a hard time wrapping my head around that.

Onto the links:
This story is a little old but it sums up to me what makes Coach Saban, Coach Saban:
For a little history of the ND/Bama series start here:
And for the record the Tide is 1-5 all-time vs. ND and the Bear was 0-4 which is amazing to think he never beat them. (Also had a great 5 part series on every game that the Tide and ND have played.) Go to and read about it.
The stats for this game are pretty amazing:
  • Bama has scored 45 rushing TD’s this year-ND has given up 2
  • Both ND and Bama average 7.3 yards per play in the first quarter of games this year
  • 0.4 yards in differential in average in gain per carry in the 3rd quarter of games this year for ND and the Tide (ND 6.4 The Tide 6.0)
  • ND has gotten a sack on 7.5% of opponents pass attempts this year and in a stat that shocked me our o-line has given up a sack every 7.1% of pass plays
  • Since the AP poll started in 1936 the Tide have won 9 National Titles while ND has won 8 the most of any two programs.
  • The Crimson Tide have won 60 games over the past five seasons, the most in league history and tied with Nebraska (1993-97) for the most in major college football history. The Tide have won 48 games over the past four seasons; they can break the SEC record they share with Florida (2006-09) and tie the NCAA record of 49 shared by Nebraska (1994-97) and Boise State (2006-09) if they defeat Notre Dame. (This is simply amazing to me!)
  • In 2012, a face-value ticket for an SEC game reached $100 for the first time. Four years ago, the SEC’s priciest ticket was the Iron Bowl at $65. This season, 30 SEC games cost at least $65, including nondescript matchups such as Mississippi State-Tennessee, Ole Miss-Vanderbilt, Missouri-Vanderbilt and Missouri-Kentucky.
  • The SEC continued to lead the nation at 75,444 fans per game, but that was its lowest average since 2007. SEC crowds are down 2 percent since peaking in 2008 at 76,844.
  • The Big Ten averaged 70,387 fans per game in 2012, its lowest since 2008 (not the least bit surprising considering the quality of play on the field)
  • With both ND and Bama getting 17,000 tickets each for the game the combined requests for tickets depending on what source you go with came close to 145,000
  • Finally I think this game will CRUSH and I mean CRUSH the record for most viewed cable game/show in history. Don’t believe me check out which two teams had the highest rated games this year: CBS aired three of the top four most-watched regular-season college football telecasts of the 2012 season, including the most-watched tilt: Alabama’s defeat of Georgia in the SEC Championship on Dec. 1. That game drew 16.2 million viewers, just topping ESPN’s broadcast of Notre Dame-USC on Nov. 24 (16.1 million). CBS’ coverage of Alabama-LSU on Nov. 3 came in third (11.4 million viewers), followed by Texas A&M-Alabama on CBS on Nov. 10 (9.6 million).
So with all of that said here is how I see the game going. Very close for the first half like a Tide/LSU game team with both teams trying to impose their will. The Tide on the ground, ND stacking the line and daring AJ to beat them over the top, while on offense Golson and Brian Kelly trying to do everything they can to keep the Tide off balance (like A&M did). But by the 3rd quarter and especially if the Tide has the lead we start grinding them down with Eddie and TJ. Our defense starts teeing off on Golson with blitz and strange defensive packages that Coach Saban and Coach Smart have been cooking up for a month. As long as the Tide doesn’t turn the ball over or make bone headed offensive play calls I just can’t see the Tide losing this game. Vegas says the Tide will win by 10 I think they will cover and win 24-10 and we dance the night away for the 15th time.

Finally 7 years into our alumni group we keep growing and growing. Two weeks ago Laurel and I were interviewed by the ABC TV station from Birmingham. They came up for Notre Dame Media day and drove into Chicago just to talk to us. We will post the link when the story airs but what I found the most interesting was what the reporter told Laurel and I off air. He said that when he told people that he was going to South Bend everyone said you have to go to Chicago and check out the Houndstooth and find out about the Alumni group up in Chicago. I’ve mentioned it before but I wanted to say it once again you guys make us who we are (the best out-of-state chapter in the country) so if you’re going to the game in Miami wear our shirts with pride and for those of you like me who will be at the Tooth or AR on Monday be ready to cheer our hearts out!

Happy New Year and RTR
3rd January
written by admin

Need a last minute tax deduction? Be part of the Alabama family and join more than 30,000 active alumni and friends to support the University and the National Alumni Association. Your gift is tax deductible if it is submitted online or postmarked by December 31, 2012. Read about the many benefits and join today!

Make sure to add Roll Tide Chicago Scholarship fund or Chicago Illinois Chapter Endowed Scholarship to your check or to the online form, the link above will take you right to the page.