The buzz about IC's recent problems is even more intense in his hometown. This article does some point-counterpoint on how things may have been different had he become a part of the Saban "process".
From today's Ledger-Enquirer: Stephanie Pedersen: Did Isaiah Crowell make the wrong decision by going to Georgia?
What if Crowell chose Alabama on Feb. 2, 2011?
Well, here's what we know about Alabama:
• Crowell wouldn't have been the featured running back. Trent Richardson, a Heisman finalist, was the Tide's go-to guy. The freshman could have redshirted or taken his time learning the system.
• Crowell may have competed for the second-string position. Eddie Lacey, now Bama's presumed go-to guy, was Richardson's understudy.• Lacey was sidelined several times throughout the season with a turf toe injury. If Crowell wasn't the backup, he would have seen time on the field during Lacey's recovery
.• Alabama won a national championship last season.
Here's how it was different than Georgia
:• When the Bulldogs were recruiting Crowell, the entire fan base looked at him as the savior of that program. Some even said Richt's job depended on it. Alabama didn't have those types of expectations. Crowell could have been one of many stars in the Tide's backfield.
• Crowell drew the ire of his Georgia teammates early with a lazy work ethic. They wouldn't come out and say it, but they alluded to it all last summer. Laziness doesn't win championships. If he had that work ethic at Alabama, he already would be at Jacksonville State.
• All eyes were on Crowell all the time in Athens. In Tuscaloosa, football players are gods. They are worshipped 365 days a year. Crowell would have been a main attraction. He wouldn't have been THE main attraction.
1) IC chose UGA because he thought he could fill in the "missing man" formation. He did not want to be an "understudy".
2) He probably would have made some of the suboptimal decisions he made at UGA at UA
3) Given how tight-lipped Saban is about player discipline, not much if anything would come out
4) He would have been released in a much less public manner.
Given history, it may be awhile before UGA recruits another running back from here in the Fountain City.