HOOVER, Ala. – At 7:45 Wednesday morning, the atrium of the Hyatt-Regency in Hoover – site of SEC Football Media Days – was packed. Hundreds of Alabama fans patiently waited to cheer on Nick Saban, Minkah Fitzpatrick, Calvin Ridley and Bradley Bozeman.

The quartet did not make an appearance with the media until more than an hour later at 9:05. Fans were cheering, taking pictures, and…talking about Florida State. It was a July tailgate party in front of an escalator.

Bama fans –  there is truly nothing like them.

“They are EVERYTHING! They are always here. They are always here to support us. You can’t thank them enough,” said Bozeman, the senior offensive lineman.

Matt Wyatt brought his two daughters. “We are here to see the players because just love Alabama,” said Lauren. “Because they are #1,” shouted her younger sister.

Two years ago, a gentleman from Australia showed up complete with a “We came from down under to see the Tide Roll” banner.

On Wednesday, he was back but not going to be in the states long enough to catch a game. “This is the best we can do. Roll Tide, Roll, mate,” he said.

While that is certainly the one of the farthest distances anyone has traveled for just a chance at getting a photo or an autograph, it is not the most curious.

Standing in the middle of the ocean of crimson and white was Aaron Massey wearing a green and gold cap and an Oklahoma City Thunder jersey.

“Not really a big Alabama fan; UAB fan. I am a fan of Nick Saban. He is a great coach,” said the Gardendale native.

By 1:15 in the afternoon, Saban, his three players, and the Tide faithful had left the Hoover hotel lobby allowing a couple from Toledo, Ohio to check-in without a “Roll Tide” to be heard.

One has to wonder what would have crossed their minds three hours earlier.

Matt Coulter for SylacaugaNews.com | © 2017, SylacaugaNews.com/Marble City Media LLC. All Rights Reserved.


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