Paschall's Picks: Bama's 2008 class left a mark

Paschall's Picks: Bama's 2008 class left a mark

November 17th, 2011 by David Paschall in Sports - Columns


Winners: 16

Joe Adams moves: 9

Pasquali is 217-58 overall (78.9 percent) this season.


Florida 31, Furman 12

Va. Tech 26, N. Carolina 9

Georgia Tech 24, Duke 23

Wake Forest 17, Maryland 15

Miami 13, South Florida 10

Clemson 30, N.C. State 24

Notre Dame 35, Boston Coll. 6

Florida State 28, Virginia 21

Oklahoma 42, Baylor 17

Houston 39, SMU 28

Wisconsin 27, Illinois 20

Michigan State 45, Indiana 14

Arkansas State 38, MTSU 13

Ohio State 20, Penn State 19

Oregon 34, Southern Cal 30

Stanford 41, California 25

Michigan 23, Nebraska 22

One way to detect a stout college football recruiting class is when those players move on to the NFL in waves.

Many members of Alabama's 2008 bumper crop will play at Bryant-Denny Stadium for a final time Saturday when the Crimson Tide host Georgia Southern. Among them are senior tackle Barrett Jones, senior safeties Mark Barron and Robert Lester, senior linebacker Courtney Upshaw and redshirt junior linebacker Dont'a Hightower, who is expected to forgo his final year of eligibility.

Already gone from the '08 class are nose tackle Terrence Cody, a second-round pick in the 2010 NFL draft, and three first-round picks this past April: defensive tackle Marcell Dareus, receiver Julio Jones and tailback Mark Ingram.

"There is no doubt that group was the group that sort of turned the program around," Tide coach Nick Saban said Wednesday.

Alabama's '08 class has enjoyed a school-record 45 wins in its 51 games.

It will go down among the top three SEC classes in recent years, rivaling the '04 LSU class also inked by Saban - a crop headed by receiver Early Doucet, running back Jacob Hester and defensive tackle Glenn Dorsey - and the '06 Florida class under Urban Meyer. That class, which contained quarterback Tim Tebow, receiver Percy Harvin, defensive end Jermaine Cunningham and linebacker Brandon Spikes, had a part in two national championships, so that may be the standard.

Though Alabama's '08 class still has a shot for a second crown.

Pasquali's Pix:

Kentucky at Georgia: Perhaps the Bulldogs could move their SEC East championship celebration to halftime. Bulldogs 48, Wildcats 3.

The Citadel at South Carolina: The Gamecocks could clinch consecutive nine-win seasons for the first time in school history. Gamecocks 37, Bulldogs 10.

Samford at Auburn: Now these are some beatable Bulldogs for Gene Chizik's Tigers. Tigers 36, Bulldogs 17.

Georgia Southern at Alabama: The Crimson Tide can record their 32nd 10-win season, which would temporarily tie Oklahoma for the most in the sport. Crimson Tide 41, Eagles 6.

Wofford at UTC: The Mocs need a lasting memory from the 2011 season that tastes better than their Citadel meltdown. Terriers 24, Mocs 19.

Mississippi State at Arkansas: You know the pickings are somewhat slim when this is the CBS game of the week. Razorbacks 33, Bullies 14.

LSU at Ole Miss: The Rebels are within one victory of splitting this year against teams from Louisiana. Tigers 52, Rebels 15.

Vanderbilt at Tennessee: It might be important this week for the Volunteers to learn how to score in the second half. Commodores 25, Vols 22.