The Battle Plan

November 15, 2013

As we reach the middle of November our sights focus on the crucial weeks of the football season. Fortunately, we approach it with our Crimson Tide football team sitting atop the rankings and in the midst of the race for a berth in the BCS National championship Game.

A Night to Remember

Last Saturday night, on a perfect football weekend that featured an amazing crowd, College Game Day on campus, a CBS national telecast, celebrities from all walks of life, a championship game atmosphere and two great college teams in a heavyweight championship caliber contest, there were two things that stood out to me as the difference in the game - leadership and the will to win.

When LSU took the opening drive of the second half and drove down to tie the game at 17, the game could have gone either way. After a couple of first downs, the Crimson Tide faced fourth-and-one around our own 40. If we punt, LSU clearly has the momentum. Instead, a brilliantly executed fake punt netted a first down around midfield and the ensuing drive for the go-ahead touchdown took 7 minutes and 50 seconds off the clock.

During that drive, leadership in all aspects (especially in half time adjustments by the staff), and the will to win asserted by the team were evident as the Crimson Tide turned the momentum in our favor, and over the remainder of the game pounded the Tigers into submission.

Hats off to Coach Saban, the staff and team for a great victory on the field. Hats off as well to the many staff members who performed at Championship levels off the field in the very complex management of successfully putting on an event of this magnitude. Everyone involved is to be congratulated. Iím most thankful for the opportunity to be a part of this program and look forward to our next challenge this week in our biggest SEC game of the year against Mississippi State!

Standout Performers

Each week I will highlight student-athletes or teams that have performed at a high level to bring distinction to Alabama. Here are this week's spotlighted athletes:

*Coach Ed Allen's women's volleyball team earned its 20th win of the season last Friday night in a victory over Arkansas. Coach Allen's team posted Alabama's first 20-win season since 2005 and is poised for consideration for an NCAA Tournament berth, continuing Coach Allen's turnaround of the program in his fourth year as head coach. Congratulations to Coach Allen and his team and good luck this weekend as the Tide travels to matches at South Carolina on Friday night and at Florida on Sunday afternoon.

*Running back T.J. Yeldon, offensive lineman Austin Shepherd, linebacker C.J. Mosley, linebacker Trey DePriest, safety Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, special teams star Jarrick Williams and placekicker Cade Foster all earned Player of the Week honors by the coaching staff for their performances in the Tide's 38-17 win over LSU last Saturday night.

*Guard Trevor Releford scored 29 points while leading the Tide men's basketball team to its first win of the season, a 76-64 victory over Texas Tech on Thursday night at Coleman Coliseum. Trevor moved into 20th on the Alabama career scoring list during the game. Sophomore guard Retin Obasohan had a career-high 15 points and a career-best five steals while playing a crucial role in the victory.

The Value of Support

Our fan support in football, gymnastics and softball is the nation's finest in terms of numbers, passion and sportsmanship. In every sport in which we compete, fan support makes a tremendous impact.

As we near the end of the fall semester, please consider making plans to come out and support our teams on the hardwood during the winter months and give your vocal support to all of our spring sports teams this year. We have some of the finest facilities in the nation in virtually every sport, as well as the good fortune of living in a comfortable climate most of the year.

I would like to challenge our fans, particularly our students, to adopt a team, get to know the players, the coaches, and the sport. Become a passionate supporter and drag your friends to see practices and games. Our coaches and players need your support and if we can create the right atmosphere in every venue, it can have a dramatic effect on our teamsí success.

Protecting Trademarks

One of the most misunderstood aspects of the business of college athletics is the value of trademarks and the need for Universities and athletic departments to fight to protect them. Trademarks prevent confusion in the marketplace and inform consumers that a product is of a certain quality or standard.

Our university has vigorously protected its trademarks since 1981 when we started our trademark licensing program. It takes relentless effort and, often times money, to do so. Nothing in that effort is done frivolously. When our trademarks are challenged, we either defend them or risk losing them.

The Alabama brand and trademarks have become international in scope. We have students, alumni and fans in every state in the United States and more than 70 countries throughout the world. That means that the Alabama brand has a presence in all of those areas. As the exposure grows, the opportunities for mischief grow, and so does the need to ensure that our brand, our name, and our trademarks are used appropriately and in keeping with our values. Our licensing program not only protects our trademarks but builds equity in our brand and provides positive exposure throughout the world. It also generates a lot of royalty income.

Last year, Alabama generated just under $10 million in gross royalties. That income is directed to the University of Alabamaís National Merit Scholarships, the Paul W. Bryant Museum, and the Department of Intercollegiate Athletics.

Upcoming Events

We have several athletic events on campus next week. Please make your plans to attend the following:

  • Monday, November 18 - Men's Basketball vs. Stillman, 7 p.m. (Coleman Coliseum)
  • Tuesday, November 19 - Men's Basketball vs. Georgia State or McNeese State, 7 p.m. (Coleman Coliseum)
  • Thursday, November 21 - Women's Basketball vs. Wisconsin, 7 p.m. (Foster Auditorium)
  • Friday, November 22 - Volleyball vs. Ole Miss, 7 p.m. (Foster Auditorium)
  • Saturday, November 23 - Football vs. Chattanooga, 1 p.m. (Bryant-Denny Stadium)

Join us at a home event soon to help us keep the Tide rising!

Roll Tide!

Bill Battle signature

    The Battle Plan