TUSCALOOSA – For three days this summer, Jim McElwain took his family on vacation to Polson, Mont., (pop. 4,500), a town that is an hour from his childhood home of Missoula.
The first-year Alabama offensive coordinator had already adorned his family with UA gear, and one of his daughters wore a crimson shirt into a store.
Before the family left, a clerk stopped them.
“`Wow, this is unbelievable,'” McElwain said the cashier told his family. “`We have somebody with the University of Alabama at our store.’ The Alabama name … it’s amazing how far that stretches.”
McElwain, who met with the state media for the first time on Sunday, is still learning about the new world he has entered.
Sure, when he left Fresno State to take the reins of the Tide offense, he heard Alabama was humid. Now he realizes you can barely sit on the back patio because “you’re dripping with sweat.”