Coach Saban Opening Statement:
"Last week, I think we played with more consistency in the game and we played with really good intensity and a really good effort and toughness. I thought the focus was really good, which all leads to better execution, less penalties and turnovers – a lot of good things. I don't think this is the time to get satisfied with yourself in any way, shape or form. If you are focusing on what you need to do to be the best player you can be and what we need to do to be the best team that we can be, our focus is going to be what we can do to improve and get better for the challenges ahead. And every challenge is a bigger challenge.
"We had some players of the week. On offense: Kenyan Drake, AJ McCarron and Austin Shepherd. On defense: Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, C.J. Mosley and Jarrick Williams, and on special teams: Dee Hart, Eddie Jackson and DeAndrew White.
"From an injury standpoint, Vinnie Sunseri will have surgery tomorrow and be out for the year. Vinnie has done a great job for us. He's an outstanding player, really good person, good leader, and I can't say enough about the job that he has done this year and throughout his career. I always hate when guys get injuries. It's a tough part of the game, but it's going to provide an opportunity for some other guys to step up and play well. We will probably play with Landon Collins in that position, which he has been playing Ha Ha's position. Jarrick Williams will be backing them up. Bradley Sylve and Altee Tenpenny are day-to-day with their injuries and we will not know until later in the week if they will be able to play in this game.
"This game with Tennessee is a very special rivalry for a lot of people - a lot of our folks in Alabama and especially is for our team. It has been one of the best rivalries in college football for a long time. In the last two weeks, Tennessee has emerged as a very good football team. They had an opportunity to beat Georgia, and they beat South Carolina last week. I think Butch Jones has done an outstanding job there. When a team improves like they have improved, it's always a sign of good coaching and a good coaching staff and a lot of people doing a very good job. They are able to run the ball very effectively on offense. The quarterback has played really well for them. Defensively, they have eight starters back and have played really well so far this year. They have all their specialists back and they are very good on special teams. This is a really solid team all the way around."
INFORMATION SOURCE: University of Alabama Athletics Dept.