According to Julio Jones, three times since 2008, Alabama really hasn't cared about its bowl game. Unless it's the national championship--which the Crimson Tide have played in, and won, three times since '08--it's tough for the coaches, players, and fans to get truly amped up for a bowl game.
Alabama missed out on the BCS National Championship Game this past season. The Crimson Tide were delegated to the Sugar Bowl and they lost to Oklahoma. Jones, now a star receiver for the Atlanta Falcons, compared the defeat to Alabama's loss to Utah in the Sugar Bowl in 2008.
In an interview with Sports Illustrated, Jones was asked, which loss was worse for Alabama in 2013: Auburn or Oklahoma?
"(Auburn) no question," Jones said. "You see, the Sugar Bowl, when we're there, it's like championship or not. Sugar Bowl? Nobody cares about playing in the Sugar Bowl."
Jones compared Alabama's 2013 squad, which went 11-2, to the Crimson Tide's 2008 team--featuring a freshman Jones--which went 12-2, losing to Utah in the Sugar Bowl.
"When I was there, I guess my freshman year, we lost to Florida (in the SEC title game). We went to the Sugar Bowl, and we lost to Utah. Nobody wanted to play that game. Everybody was disappointed because we thought we were going to go to the national championship game. Like this previous year with Alabama, the same thing happened. We lost the game to Auburn, and then they go to the Sugar Bowl, and Oklahoma beats them. It's either championship or not, like I said."