'Bama Braces for 3 Tough Games

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (AP) - Antoine Caldwell is already convinced that this Alabama team is different from the one that faced Arkansas a year ago.

That team had won its first three games, but never seemed to get it together after a confidence-sapping overtime loss to the Razorbacks.

It might not be a make-or-break game Saturday against Number 16 Arkansas, but it is the start of the Tide's first big stretch under coach Nick Saban.

Alabama's blowout of Western Carolina and a relatively easy win at Vanderbilt are nice, but not proof that 'Bama's back, or even dramatically better.

Those answers should become clearer in the next few weeks. First the Tide faces the Razorbacks (1-0, 0-0). Then, it's Number 23 Georgia and Florida State.

Instead of getting overwhelmed by the tough schedule ahead, Saban and his players are trying to just take things one game at a time.

Saban said the most important thing is to see what the team can do to improve. He said he sees each game as a way to find out what they need to work on.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)