- The University of Alabama football fans are as devoted a they get.
- In the 2023 season, the team's quarterback and a defensive player instituted the mantra LANK.
- The mantra inspired the team all season, and even got the attention of Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Jalen Hurts.
Now a new mantra has taken hold among the players, fans, and even very famous alumni. Read on for details behind what LANK means and how the phrase came to be in the first place.
What does LANK mean and why do Alabama fans say it — and even wear it?
The term LANK was originally kicked off by Alabama's quarterback Jalen Milroe and his good friend, defensive back Terrion Arnold, in the preseason, per Yahoo! Sports.
LANK actually stands for "Let All Naysayers Know."
Jalen explained the genesis of the catchy term in Sept., saying to reporters, “LANK was something we built in the offseason. We came in as one unit to think of a motto to push our team."
He went on to share, "There was a lot of doubt throughout the offseason. We came together and made that our motto this year.”
The mantra clearly worked, with Alabama making it to the playoffs. In fact, LANK has become so popular that now the players are profiting from LANK merchandise around their names and likenesses.
A very prominent former quarterback for Crimson Tide is even sporting the phrase on a shirt.
Jalen Hurts was spotted sporting LANK merch.
One Jalen is a huge fan of another.
Indeed, Alabama's QB looks up to the leading offensive player for the winning team the Philadelphia Eagles, who was a starting quarterback for Alabama for two seasons during his college career.
In what must feel like a full circle moment, the elder Jalen was spotted wearing a LANK shirt in Dec. 2023. The exciting incident was well documented on social media, and got a lot of fans very excited — likely including the Jalen who started the concept.
It's a good thing we know what LANK means because the mantra almost got misunderstood.
Another viral moment around the popular phrase happened when sports analyst Pat McAfee attempted to explain LANK on his show.
A panel of other commentators including Rece Davis were on hand during the segment.
Rece admitted that he thought LANK meant something else, and made it clear he'd replaced "naysayers" with a highly offensive word in his own head.
“That is not what I thought,” McAfee quickly interjected during the viral moment. “Let a naysayer know? Of course. It got real tight, it got real tight up here."
Thankfully the phrase that has truly caught on is completely clean. And, it's unlikely to go anywhere anytime soon.
Indeed, we're guessing LANK will have a life into 2024, even if Alabama ultimately ended its dream to snag the top spot by losing to Michigan 20-27 in the Jan. 1, 2024 Rose Bowl game.