The Alabama Crimson Tide entered Saturday’s College Football Playoff semifinal as a two-touchdown favorite against the Washington Huskies. Before the game even began, though, it was clear that Nick Saban’s team was all business, perhaps to a fault.
Prior to kick-off, captains for both teams met at midfield as normal operating procedure would indicate. Alabama won the toss and elected to defer to the second half. From there, the two sets of captains moved into customary position to notate which end of the field they would be defending and Washington’s players as is custom, went in for a handshake. Alabama’s quintet of captains wanted no part of it, simply blowing off the handshake in favor of a quick trek to the sideline.
Defensive lineman Jonathan Allen, offensive tackle Cam Robinson, linebacker Reuben Foster and injured defensive back Eddie Jackson were the Crimson Tide representatives that made the choice and it is certainly a controversial one. Any perceived lack of sportsmanship will cause an outcry in some corners of the sports world and, considering the massive stage, one would assume that the Crimson Tide would recognize this. Throw in the fact that Nick Saban, Lane Kiffin and company have earned a reputation for some level of arrogance and this doesn’t play super well.