When I first heard Jones was in a cast after the SECCG I was concerned about whether or not he'd be ready by Jan. 7. I understand his insistence that he will play, but we all know (I think) that Saban will put the team first come game time. If the The Coach is convinced Jones' injury will be a detriment to the offense, he will not play him. With that said, oldschool brings up an interesting point: "he's essential to Alabama's offense." How essential? Are we talking game-winning essential or win-but-not-by-as-wide-a-margin essential?
Additionally, how does Ryan Kelly compare to Jones? I know experience is a wide-divide between the two, but athletically and intellectually are they comparable?
As talented and as smart as Kelly may be he could never be as effective as Jones due to the fact that Jones is so good and has so much experience.
Remember what happened in the 2009 Sugar Bowl when we lost Andre Smith at the last minute? JPW and our running game never had a prayer, it was embarrasing...
If Jones is only at 50% physically he would still be more effective than Kelly could ever be mentally in this game against ND's tough and smart defensive front 7.
Knowing Barrett Jones, if he can walk he will play...
Last edited by 0LDSCH00L; 12-28-2012 at 05:08 PM.
"He's an exceptional young player that catches on very fast with the scheme of things," Warmack said. "I don't really see him as a young player. I see him as a veteran.
"He's keen on carrying me and taking control in terms of making the right calls, knowing the scheme, what it takes to be a starter at center on the offensive line. He's doing a really good job."
Kelly was a three-star prospect out of West Chester, Ohio, but he was recruited like a four- or five-star. He was one of Alabama's first commitments for the 2011 class, as former linebackers coach Sal Sunseri led the charge to bring Kelly to Alabama.
After redshirting the 2011 season, Kelly has been Jones' backup since the beginning of the year. He saw the field in nine of Alabama's 13 games, sitting out against Ole Miss, LSU, Texas A&M and Georgia.
Kelly, like the rest of his teammates, have heard that they're "one play away" all season. Only now does it carry a bit more significance.
"Coach (Jeff) Stoutland always tells us that it can happen to anybody and everybody needs to be ready for it," Warmack said. "He's always been ready.
"This is his opportunity to contribute not only to the offensive line, but the team. He's doing an excellent job."
From what I read earlier (can't find the link to this particular article), he had academic honors this year.
FYI: Jones is 6'5, 311 pounds and Kelly is 6'5, 288 pounds.
From the Tide's website:
Ryan Kelly is one of the country's most versatile offensive line prospects with impressive strength and athleticism who can possibly play all five positions ... a consensus four-star prospect and a big pickup for the Crimson Tide out of the state of Ohio ... was selected as an Under Armour All-American, but unable to play in the game coming off of a knee injury ... ranked the nation's No. 2 center by Scout.com ... ESPNU lists Kelly as the No. 4 center in the country while Rivals.com has Kelly ranked sixth at center and the No. 15 overall prospect in the state of Ohio ... suffered a torn ACL in 2010, which forced him to miss time, but was still named third-team Division I All-Ohio ... was a first-team all-conference and all-city selection on the offensive line as a junior in 2009 ... SuperPrep ranked him as the No. 42 player in Ohio ... selected Alabama over offers from Arizona, Boston College, Florida, Florida State, Illinois, Kentucky, Michigan, North Carolina State and Tennessee.
I'll be very surprised and disapointed if he doesn't get a chance to play. My gut feeling is he'll play and play well.
Setting aside everything said here about the fact he'll play...
Guys, realize, a move from Jones to Kelly isn't anywhere close to a move like JB Closner (who wasn't a good center as it was) to Taylor Britt.
I see the comparison you're trying to make with Andre—don't see it fits though. Andre being sent home hurt, no doubt. Mike being slid out to LT would have likely sufficed if he wasn't hurt in the 1st quarter.
With Kelly, if he's put in for Jones—barring injury to Kelly of course—I don't see it as game changing. It's my opinion, I realize that. I've long thought the 2's on the offensive line were pretty equal across the board. We've got talent there.
I hope Barrett Jones recovers for the teams sake because he is that important to the OL! That is unless we want to see AJ picking himself up off the ground all day...
Utah's defense was equally impressive, intercepting John Parker Wilson twice and sacking him eight times, with the seventh sack forcing a fumble that sent crimson-clad Alabama fans streaming for the exits with just more than five minutes remaining.
Alabama could have used suspended All-America left tackle Andre Smith, but the All- America was sent home earlier because of possible NCAA violations.
The Utes' front seven was significantly outweighed by Alabama's offensive line, but refused to give ground to the Tide's normally powerful running game that averaged 196.5 yards per game coming into the Sugar Bowl. Glen Coffee was held to 36 yards on 13 carries, while Mark Ingram rushed eight times for only 26 yards.
The Utes' array of stunts and blitzes appeared to upset Wilson's rhythm. He overthrew a couple of open receivers downfield and finished 18-of-30 for 177 yards and a touchdown
Last edited by 0LDSCH00L; 12-29-2012 at 01:16 PM.