Curious decision McCarron

Published 12:02 am Thursday, January 16, 2014

It was quite surprising to hear that AJ McCarron wasn’t going to play in the 2014 Reese’s Senior Bowl on Jan. 25 in Mobile.

The Senior Bowl is played at Ladd-Peebles Stadium in the former Alabama quarterback’s hometown every season and highlights college football’s top senior players from all around the country.

In addition to being able to play in the annual game, players have the opportunity to be looked at by NFL scouts during practices and the game, along with having interviews with teams to help get their names out there.

McCarron’s decision for me, and I’m sure for many Bama fans, is a head scratcher.

McCarron finished his senior season with 3,063 passing yards, 28 touchdowns and had a passing efficiency of 67.3 percent. He averaged 235.6 yards per game.

If McCarron was counting on his performance in the Sugar Bowl to help him out, then he put too many eggs in one basket.

Earlier this season and after Alabama defeated LSU 38-17 in November, McCarron and Alabama coach Nick Saban gave an interview to CBS sideline reporter Tracy Wolfson.

Wolfson asked a couple of questions of each, and one answer in particular sticks out to me that came from Saban.

I’m paraphrasing here, so don’t hold me to it. Saban basically said McCarron was a “winner,” when asked whether he was the best quarterback in the country.

I still believe the big celebration after that game was a bit too much because Alabama still had Mississippi State the next week, then Chattanooga on Nov. 23, followed by Auburn.

Alabama went on to play a mediocre game against MSU, got off to a slow start against Chattanooga, but won 49-0, and then lost to Auburn in the Iron Bowl.

With the loss to its arch rivals in the last game of the regular season, Alabama had to get ready for Oklahoma in the Sugar Bowl.

Simply put, the Sooners’ quarterback — Trevor Knight, a freshman — outplayed McCarron on so many levels.

Maybe that’s why McCarron isn’t playing in the game.

Maybe he needs to work on correcting things and making things better for the long-term.

I know that many high-profile athletes don’t play in the Mobile game, but it doesn’t hurt to show your stuff in front of those whose profession is in football.