Tide Finishes Home Work

Alabama will attempt to end its season on a winning note after a disappointing loss last weekend, and Head Coach Dennis Franchione said the Crimson Tide seems to be bouncing back well.

Alabama is 9-3 on the year and ranked 14th in the nation. The Tide, which finished the Southeastern Conference portion of its schedule with a 6-2 record, is aiming for its 27th 10-win season, which is an NCAA record. Alabama will end its year with a regular season game at Hawaii on Saturday. The game will be telecast by ESPN. Kickoff in Aloha Stadium in Honolulu will be at 2:45 p.m. HST, which is 6:45 p.m. CST. Hawaii is 9-2 on the season and ranked 24th in the nation.

Following Wednesday's practice, the last the Tide will have in Tuscaloosa this year, Franchione said, "Our players were disappointed with the loss last week and we're grateful to have another game. The great thing about having this game is we don't have time to dwell on last week. Our players have seen the film. They know Hawaii is a top 25 team, a good club, and that this will be a big game for Hawaii."

Bama worked for about two hours in helmets, shoulder pads and shorts with part of the work in the indoor facility. Franchione said, "We had to finish installing our game play, working against the things Hawaii does." He said the Tide would practice at Aloha Stadium Thursday, shortly after the team arrives in Honolulu. However, the stadium will not be available Friday, so the Tide will spend its time on film study and a walk-through after making a visit to the Arizona Memorial at Pearl Harbor Friday morning.

"We just wanted to get some things covered in practice today," Franchione said. "Everything is physically in. It's just mental now."

Representatives of the Bryant Museum were on hand at the end of practice to present giant Aloha cards signed by thousands of fans last weekend.

A tradition of Alabama football is that on the final practice at home the seniors are given rides off the practice field on the shoulders of their teammates. There were 25 seniors getting honored Wednesday. Prior to the event, Franchione said he didn't think it would be wise for Brandon Brooks -- the Tide's 5-4, 162-pound wide receiver -- to attempt to carry defensive tackle Bart Raulston by himself Raulston is listed conservatively at 6-9, 358. As it turned out, the Raulston ride was on the shoulders of linemen J.B. Closer(6-4, 292) and Grant Dickey (6-5, 300). And they had to take a break before they could get Raulston off the field.

After a Thanksgiving dinner together tonight, Tide players will board a charter jet early Thursday morning for Honolulu. The team will return to Tuscaloosa Tuesday.


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