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Alabama football: Looking inside Tide-Vols rivalry, top five SEC linebackers and more

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Alabama-Tennessee rivalry, “Third Saturday in October,” hasn’t been a meaningful game since 2006; yet head coach Butch Jones and the Volunteers are hopeful for next season.

Even with losing Reuben Foster of Alabama, Jalen Reeves-Maybin of Tennessee, Kendell Beckwith and Duke Riley of LSU among others to the National Football League, the Southeastern Conference is still flooded with experience returning at inside linebacker.

As for the Crimson Tide, it intends to build off major production defensively in the sacks and turnover department that’s it gotten in the last two years. Seeing players like Jonathan Allen, Tim Williams and Ryan Anderson all leave makes it difficult, but with the guys head coach Nick Saban and company have returning, it will be interesting to see what happens in the fall.

Yours truly of Touchdown Alabama Magazine was live Thursday morning on The Bill King Show, giving thoughts on the Third Saturday in October rivalry and running down my top five inside ‘backers’ for the SEC.

We also discussed the biggest problem facing the Tide next season.

Stephen M. Smith is a managing editor and senior writer for Touchdown Alabama Magazine.  You can “like” him on Facebook or “follow” him on Twitter, via @Smsmith_TDALMag.

Stephen Smith is a 2015 graduate of the University of Alabama. He is a senior writer and reporter for Touchdown Alabama Magazine. He has covered Alabama football for 15 years and his knowledge and coverage of the Crimson Tide's program have made him among the most respected journalist in his field. Smith has been featured on ESPN and several other marquee outlets as an analyst.

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