One of the biggest differences from when I played at Alabama (1971-1974) and today is what goes on during the summer. Back then very few players stayed on campus – just about everybody spent the summer at home. Today, all the players are on campus participating in supervised workouts and taking classes. The summer before my senior season there were a handful of us who made the decision to stay in Tuscaloosa. We lived in the dorm, took a few hours of classes, and worked out on our own – coaches and staff were not allowed to be involved. Every day we would all meet at the Coliseum to workout with the objective being to push each other to prepare for the 1974 season. From past experience we knew how practices would be when we got started and that the only way to make it through them was to be in great shape. Around the middle of July Coach Bryant would send a letter to all of the players telling us the date we were to “report” back to Tuscaloosa and to “encourage” us to be prepared! My good friend and teammate Sylvester Croom was one of the players in our workout group that summer. Click HERE to read the letter Coach Bryant sent to us in the summer of 1974. I think you’ll enjoy it.
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