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Texas A&M vs. Alabama Q&A: The Duality of Tide Fans

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"You think I'm dumb, maybe not too bright
You wonder how I sleep at night
Proud of the glory, stare down the shame
Duality of the southern thing"
- Drive-by Truckers

we can neither confirm nor deny that this is Ricky
we can neither confirm nor deny that this is Ricky
Marvin Gentry-USA TODAY Sports
The Internet is full of wonders. This year we've found an Alabama fan just daring enough to take our advanced quiz in earnest. Please welcome Ricky Muncie, Roll Bama Roll's resident rogue smartass and split personality. He can be found on Twitter at @RickyMuncie and @RickyRBR. Ricky will be tackling these questions with both knowledgeable nuance and full-blown Bammerism.

***


GBH: Walk us through the absolute horror of losing a 5-point game to a top-ten opponent. How does one begin to pick up the pieces? How long does the nightmare last before one begins to function again in daily life? How has this ordeal made you as a collective fanbase stronger?

ricky2
RickyRBR: Actually, the bane of the program has been the fluky-as-hell six-point loss to top-ten opponents. You know, the type that requires some egregious linemen-downfield or Satan-inspired lucky ricochets to execute. That pretty much covers the Kick Six game, and last month's five-turnover derpfest to Ole Miss.

The fact that Johnny Football got the bubbly-bobble spinderella move to Swope for that TD, but you did not have illegal linemen downfield likely accounts for the five point margin. You really ought to have had six.

ricky1
RickyMuncie: Perhaps you might walk us through how a fanbase picks up the pieces after a 59-point shellacking. I mean, you have 12-men and everything, and you were one play from Saban scoring his age. That's like 140 in Art Briles years.

Oh, that's right. You have the 77-point nightmare from Oklahoma still seared into your collective consciousness. I know, because every time something good happens for you some tea-sipper posts that screen cap to harsh your mellow. (Your program must suck, because we had Francione too and never got our asses surgically removed and served in a crockpot.


GBH: Nick Saban has averaged a shade over 1.5 losses per season since 2008. If you were a betting man, and maybe you are, do you pick the over or the under on hitting this average in 2015? Or is perhaps the Ole Miss game considered only half a loss since you almost completed the comeback? Is 1.5 losses and a PUSH a real possibility this year?

ricky2
RickyRBR: At this point, I am still leaning toward the over. This isn't an OH WE BE ESS EE SEE! schedule issue. It is an accurate assessment that we not only have some good opponents ahead, they are diverse in their personality and scheme. The type of team that can line up and destroy your run game isn't necessarily equipped with the instincts and personnel to go flying out to suffocate an Air Raid. Our two biggest hurdles - LSU and A&M - are about as different as you can imagine, both offensively and defensively. It's not just the level of the competition, it is the diversity.

ricky1
Ricky Muncie: The only team that can beat Bama is also called Bama, because we face the best of the best week in and week out. OH WE BE ESS EE SEE and until someone knocks us off the perch we are still there. Ole Miss has another loss or two hovering, and we are back in the game, baby!


GBH: How important is it for everyone to remember that you really beat Arkansas 27-7, and that long touchdown in garbage time your defense gave up to the Hogs is an anomaly and should be disregarded?

ricky2
RickyRBR: I'm not worried about it. Betting lines are important to some people, but the fact is that once we wore down Arkansas' starting defensive line, the levee was going to break. Bret has some talent, but does not yet have the depth to run with us. As for that last score, I was encouraged to see some of our defensive backs being aggressive about trying to strip the ball. They might have kept them a few more yards away from the endzone, but it was a great exercise in the turnover techniques our new secondary coach Mel Tucker has been preaching.

ricky1
Ricky Muncie: Are you kidding me? Those pigs shouldn't have even had the first touchdown! They would have had the ball on the 24 if it weren't for Bert's Floppapalooza phony ass penalty he drew on Cam Robinson. I know you saw it, that fist-pumping pile of crap. I'm sending money to Kliff Kingsbury just as a thank you for calling that trashy doughboy out for the lowlife he is!


GBH: Now that Jake Coker is the starter, how short is his leash? How many interceptions/incompletions will Tide fans endure before we start to hear rumblings to put in Bateman?

ricky2
RickyRBR: His leash is longer than you might think. Our coaching staff is patient above all else. Even going back to your victory in Tuscaloosa three years ago, Alabama got back into the game by remaining true to its identity and game plan. After three interceptions to Auburn, Blake Sims stayed in and was lights-out.

I believe the fanbase understands that there are solid reasons Coker is our guy. When Bateman started against Ole Miss, he completely missed some zone read plays where he had easy yardage on the keep. If you aren't processing the reads in real time, you will be processed. It also helps that Jake has been nimble and timely in getting first downs with his feet. That helps stem the apparent dichotomy in the choice for QB.

ricky1
Ricky Muncie: Hell, if Coker throws a stinker to you guys, bring in Bateman. And if he stinks it up, we will bring in Alec Morris. Then Blake Barnett. Hell, even David Cornwell. I think Luke Del Rio has some eligibility somewhere. It ain't like Florida can use him this year.


GBH: What do you like LEAST about Nick Saban?

ricky2
RickyRBR: Nick is guarded, almost to a fault. It isn't because he doesn't care. The guy isn't a monster. But I feel as though he puts the program at a future disadvantage, because so much of his process is under the radar. The fact is that he has an incredible university, athletic department and fanbase backing him up. He is really just an avatar, a catalyst allowing the greatness of the University to shine through. Others will have the resources and the ability to succeed after he is one day gone. They might not be able to actualize that, partially because they may try to run from the shadow instead of building upon the foundation.

In other words, his outer mystique is almost inhuman enough that we are setting ourselves up for failure one day.

ricky1
Ricky Muncie: He is not immortal, and he has refused to allow himself to be cloned. Selfish bastard.


GBH: We all know that it is decreed for y'all to lose your virginity to the sounds of "Sweet Home Alabama". Maybe in the presence of family. But I ask you this - what is the best song about the southern experience?

ricky2
RickyRBR: You are really dragging me into unfamiliar territory. First of all, I have not had sex with any family members, not even cousins, not even at a reunion where we had both been drinking. But secondly, I am more of a prog rock guy (don't tell Erik), and there are no real Southern Experiences in there. So cue up some King Crimson and we are set.

ricky1
Ricky Muncie: Dixieland Delight. As sung by the 90,000 member Crimson Choir, several performances yearly at Bryant-Denny Stadium.

GBH: Gary Danielson - smarmy, annoying uncle in insurance sales -or- hired gun with a microphone tasked with spreading Saban's hate of the HUNH far and wide to any old coot that will listen?

ricky2
RickyRBR: Gary Danielson isn't as bad as his pairing with Verne might make him seem. He does legitimately understand the game and the schemes, and what he does is way harder than what Chris Collinsworth brings to NFL games, because of the diversity in the college game I mentioned previously.

That said, I think part of Gary's smarm is that he has to carry a little bit more of that narrative load, since Uncle Verne is more of a voice than a voice for the game. I think if you had Gary doing what he does best with a Mike Tirico or even a Joe Tessitore, you'd see what I mean.

ricky1
Ricky Muncie: Gary can suck eggs, and so can Verne for that matter. Those homers are always trying to bring Bama nation down, and the only reason he hates the Hurry Up is that he wants longer games to hear himself talk on the TV.


GBH: Your prediction for the game and life in general:

ricky2
RickyRBR: This game could end up going several directions. What we have seen in past years is that for the Aggies to have a chance, a fast start is essential. Bama isn't likely to fold, however. The Ole Miss game taught us that.

I think the edge Bama has is that your defensive line is really great at pass rushing, but the best way to neutralize that rush is to run the ball straight through it. I think you will see a surprising amount of Kenyan Drake and Damian Harris running between the tackles, and maybe a little heavier dose of Henry later in the game when your D Line is more softened up.

Defensively, I like this bunch in the secondary more so than any group you've played. We are still young, but I see fewer big breakdowns on those jump balls, that we seemed to always lose on.

We will go with Bama, 34-24. Something late from A&M to make it closer.

ricky1
Ricky Muncie: You guys are easily 20 points better than you were last year. And we are likely 20 point worse. So we will call it 39-20.