Spring football round-up: For Crimson Tide, the “A” in A-Day stands for “aerial”

Nick Saban
Saturday was one of the biggest days of the spring football season. A whole slew of major programs held their final scrimmages of the year.

It’s an opportunity for overreaction galore. CBR surveys the hyperbole.

*At Alabama, the Crimson Tide offered a preview of what to expect under new offensive coordinator Doug Nussmeier. Nick Saban apparently wants to open up the attack, as was evident during the A-Day Game. Quarterback A.J. McCarron connected on 29 of 42 passes for 304 yards and a pair of scores. (Yes, he threw 42 times.) Phillip Sims hit on 9 of 12 attempts for 135 yards and 2 touchdowns.

If ‘Bama can add that kind of high-octane passing game to Saban’s patented suck-the-life-out-of-you ground attack, yeesh. The flip side: What does that say about the D, which is replacing a ton of standouts?

*Out west, depth issues forced USC to play a little tackle-free football. It wasn’t Heisman Trophy candidate Matt Barkley’s best outing, but it wasn’t a particularly poor performance. Then again, what can you really take away from a game of two-hand touch?

Saturday’s scrimmage illustrated that Southern Cal clearly will be walking a fine line in the fall from an injury standpoint. Of course, there is enough talent waiting in the wings that Lane Kiffin could pull it off.

*In Norman, the big story was the play of the Oklahoma Sooners‘ freshman wide receiver Trey Metoyer. The five-star pass catcher spent last fall on ice after failing to qualify academically, and it looks like it was worth the wait. Metoyer may already be the best receiver on campus and will be expected to play a big role in OU’s high-flying O come September.

On the other side of the ball, the Bob and Mike Stoops sounded pleased with the D’s overall performance in the transition to its new schemes.

*The start of Rich Rodriguez’s tenure at Arizona took a major hit when it was revelead that Wildcats safety Adam Hall had sustained a torn ACL during the spring game. It’s a tough break for Hall, who suffered a similar injury last spring.

Our buddy Kyle Kensing at Arizona Desert Swarm touches on some of the major themes in Tucson going into the offseason.

*For Florida State, the Seminoles escaped with no major injuries, which is good enough for our friend Bud Elliott. Sounds like there are still some concerns for FSU on the offensive line. Overall, though, nothing major went down in Tallhassee.

(Bud takes an appropriately demure view of the value of any spring game.)

*There were points aplenty at Georgia‘s G-Day game, but Mark Richt wasn’t sweating it.

*Auburn joined the statuary craze, unveiling tributes to a number of program legends Saturday, including Cam Newton. Tiger QB Kiehl Frazier put on a semi-Newton-ian performance in the A-Day game, going 7-of-9 passing for 92 yards.

Gene Chizik isn’t tipping his hand regarding the starter, but all signs point to Frazier.

Would love to hear your thoughts on some of Saturday’s other games. What were the big stories with your favorite teams?

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