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Alabama received a verbal commitment from 2017 JUCO CB Jhavonte Dean.

Tip of the cap to SEC Country's Chris Kirschner for this news. At least somewhat surprisingly, Dean is Alabama's first corner commitment in the 2017 class. They are also nipping at the heels of stud Ohio State corner commit Shaun Wade, but if they are to flip Wade, that likely won't come for a while. For his part, the 6-foot-2, 180-pound Dean ranks as 247Sports' No. 1 overall JUCO corner prospect in the 2017 class. He is a speedster and has run the 40-yard dash in the low-to-mid 4.30's during athletic testing this offseason.
Source: SEC Country
Jul 23 - 6:19 PM

ESPN's Craig Haubert noted that Alabama verbal 2017 DT commit Akial Byers has a similar developmental ceiling to senior DL Jonathan Allen.

"With the athleticism he possesses and the versatility he could bring to Alabama’s front, we could see Byers developing into a player similar to current talented Crimson Tide defender Jonathan Allen," Haubert wrote. Lofty lofty lofty. Haubert believes the 6-foot-4, 265-pounder -- No. 66 overall on the ESPN 300 -- to be a legitimate sleeper recruit. "Byers is a prospect who hasn’t garnered as much attention as some other top-100 prospects," Haubert noted, "but his film shows a very promising player."
Jul 23 - 5:50 PM

Alabama received a verbal commitment from four-star 2017 DT Akial Byers.

ESPN's Craig Haubert deems Byers to be "a rare sleeper in this day and age of recruiting." The analyst notes that the 6-foot-4, 265-pounder "displays the tools to create problems as an interior pass rusher not just because of his get-off, but [because he also] demonstrates good hips and flexibility to be able to attack." Byers ranks as the No. 66 overall prospect on the ESPN 300. He stands as their 10th commitment from that master list, joining the likes of RB Najee Harris, T Alex Leatherwood and QB Tua Tagovailoa.
Jul 23 - 3:10 PM

Alabama AD Bill Battle has completed a round of treatment for multiple myeloma.

Battle stepped away from his post in mid-June in order to pursue a stem cell transplant. He underwent that procedure on June 27 and was released from the hospital on July 8. According to the university, Battle hopes to return to work on a limited basis in the near future. He was initially diagnosed with multiple myeloma in 2014.
Source: AL.com
Jul 22 - 1:17 PM

Alabama senior S Eddie Jackson said that redshirt junior QB Cooper Bateman is "most definitely" the vocal leader among the quartet of Tide gunslingers competing to start in 2016.

Jackson spoke to Bateman's leadership qualities, while HC Nick Saban noted that the 6-foot-3, 220-pounder "has the best understanding of the offense" and "the most experience." He elaborated, saying, "And I think that shows, at times. He's improved his ability and consistency as a passer, which has been the most important thing we tried to work with him to help him develop." Saban wouldn't show his entire hand, but all signs since spring have pointed to Bateman having at least a slight edge over David Cornwell, Jalen Hurts and Blake Barnett as we near August camp. Phil Savage questioned Bateman's ability to throw an accurate deep ball last month, perhaps what Saban was hinting at when he talked of the quarterback working to improve his consistency.
Source: ESPN.com
Jul 20 - 3:17 PM

Alabama HC Nick Saban expressed concern over the recent arrests of Crimson Tide players.

"I don't like the fact in all honesty that we have off-field issues," Saban said. "That sends a signal to me that something's not right here." This offseason has seen the arrests of T Cameron Robinson, CB Hootie Jones and G Alphonse Taylor. Of that lot, Taylor is the most recent to run afoul with the law. He was indefinitely suspended following Sunday's arrest on suspicion of DUI. Robinson and Jones are past their legal troubles, now, as the Louisiana DA declined to prosecute them following their May arrest on charges of marijuana possession and (in Robinson's case) felony possession of a stolen weapon. Saban chose not to issue game suspensions for either player, a decision which caused the SEC Network's Paul Finebaum to launch into an on-air rebuke of the legendary coach during his visit to the network set.
Jul 19 - 3:32 PM

Alabama redshirt senior G Alphonse Taylor has been indefinitely suspended.

Taylor was arrested and charged with a DUI on Sunday. In a statement, HC Nick Saban said, "We are very disappointed any time a player makes a choice that leads to this kind of behavior. We are still in the process of gathering all of the details on the situation, but from a football standpoint, Alphonse Taylor has been indefinitely suspended from the team." The 6-foot-5, 340-pounder was a 15-game starter at right guard in 2015. He was named to the preseason All-SEC second team last week.
Jul 18 - 4:06 PM

Alabama redshirt senior G Alphonse Taylor was arrested and charged with a DUI on Sunday.

Tuscaloosa Police Department spokesman Teena Richardson said that Taylor left the scene of an accident prior to his arrest. No other details have emerged at this juncture. Last season, the 6-foot-5, 340-pounder started all 15 games at right guard for the defending champs. This spring was less kind to him, as he practiced mostly with the second-team offense. HC Nick Saban was not pleased with Taylor's conditioning, hence that slight demotion. Further details should emerge from this case in the coming hours and days. Saban took a wait-and-see approach to the arrests of Cam Robinson and Hootie Jones earlier this offseason (they will not be suspended) and he could take a similar approach to Taylor. Though given that the lineman was already in Saban's doghouse due to his weight issues, he might not receive quite the same leniency. Stay tuned.
Source: ESPN.com
Jul 17 - 7:13 PM

USC HC Clay Helton called Alabama HC Nick Saban "maybe the best in our generation."

Not only did Helton call Saban "one of the greatest head coaches in the history of the game" (no argument from us), he also referred to Bama OC Lane Kiffin as "one of the most brilliant men [Helton] has ever been associated with" (a quick Googling can argue that one well enough). The reason this is even a discussion at Pac-12 Media Days is because USC and Alabama will square off in a mouthwatering season-opener down in Jerry's World on September 3. Said Helton, "I wish sometimes I could just have a box of popcorn and watch it."
Source: ESPN.com
Jul 16 - 3:18 PM

Alabama senior S Eddie Jackson posted +8.9 Pro Football Focus coverage grade last year, best among returning safeties.

That's no surprise for a corner who was moved to safety prior to the season. The move stuck, and Pro Football Focus now sees Jackson as the No. 64 returning player in college football. "He has a chance to take another big step forward and his versatility and experience will be coveted in NFL circles," Steve Palazzolo wrote.
Jul 15 - 6:31 PM

The Monroe Police Department denied Alabama HC Nick Saban's insinuation that they arrested junior T Cameron Robinson and junior CB Laurence Jones due to an allegiance to LSU.

Saban and the SEC Network's Paul Finebaum went on a bender of a back-and-forth over Robinson on Wednesday, with Saban -- according to Finebaum -- claiming that the officers involved made the arrest because of their affinity to LSU. Monroe Police public information officer Chris Bates responded to this claim. "I can tell you for a fact that the first officer on the scene is not an LSU fan," Bates said. "He hates LSU. He doesn’t like the color yellow or purple and gold. In fact, he’s a Florida fan. If you mention LSU around him, he throws up in his mouth." In a more substantive backing of the officers involved, Bates insisted that "[o]ur officer was doing his job" and that "[w]e enforce the law based on the law." Neither Robinson nor Jones is expected to miss any game-action for their May arrest, as the district attorney has decided not to pursue the case. Saban, himself, has no plans to issue suspensions.
Jul 14 - 1:55 PM

AL.com's Matt Zenitz reports that transferring Alabama graduate CB Maurice Smith has yet to receive a release from his scholarship.

According to Zenitz, Smith made "several attempts" to secure the scholarship release from Alabama last month, to no avail. He is now appealing in the hopes that he can finally jar himself free from the Tide. The strangest angle to all of this is that while Alabama has not granted him freedom from his scholarship, the university still gave him permission to speak to other programs. Miami, Georgia, Maryland and USC are all thought to be in the running here, assuming that Smith is ever able to actually leave Alabama. The 6-foot, 186-pounder is set to graduate in early August.
Source: AL.com
Jul 13 - 1:44 PM

Alabama HC Nick Saban indicated that the discipline for junior T Cam Robinson and junior CB Laurence Jones has been administered internally.

Signs have been pointing this way for some time -- particularly after Louisiana DA Jerry Jones declined to prosecute weapons and marijuana charges against Robinson and Jones last month following their May arrest in a West Monroe, Louisiana, park. Saban explained his decision not to levy suspensions, noting that "[b]oth players have done a significant amount of things to change their behavior whether it was police ride alongs, whether it was community service or juvenile groups that need positive role models and influence to make better choices and decisions." Given that the legal troubles have been put to rest and no suspensions are forthcoming, this story should more/less be considered a wrap. NFL teams will certainly be grilling Robinson about all of this after he declares for the draft, though, a decision which could well come in January.
Source: AL.com
Jul 13 - 1:27 PM

Alabama HC Nick Saban believes that SEC Media Days are a waste of time.

We cede the floor to you, Coach. "I’m gonna sit up here and very seriously talk about our team. And everything I’m gonna say about our team, you’ve already written a story about," Saban told the assembled media about six minutes into his prepared remarks. "Somebody in this room has already written a story about what I’m gonna talk about. But you’re gonna be serious, and I’m gonna be serious about talking about it again." For what it's worth, Saban did say that he believes his team had a "good offseason" despite off-field troubles with Cam Robinson and Hootie Jones (arrests for firearms, marijuana) and assistant Bo Davis (fired after a recruiting violation).
Source: SEC Country
Jul 13 - 12:42 PM

Alabama four-star 2017 verbal commit QB Tua Tagovailoa was named MVP of the Elite 11 at The Opening.

Tagovailoa earned the honor when he tossed four touchdown passes during the 7-on-7 championship game in Beaverton, Oregon, over the weekend. That the 6-foot-1, 190-pounder came away with the MVP is made all the more impressive by the fact that he essentially could only utilize half of his skill-set -- per the rules of this particular tournament, he had to release the ball within 3.5 seconds in order to avoid being hit with a delay of game penalty. Thus, he was unable to showcase his prowess on the hoof. No matter. This offseason, he has worked to improve his pocket passing and it showed on the big stage. "It's a once-in-a-lifetime experience as well as journey," he said to Bleacher Report. "Being able to get the MVP, all glory goes to God with that." Tagovailoa is the second Tide commitment to be named Elite 11 MVP in the last three years. Current redshirt freshman QB Blake Barnett pulled off the feat in the summer of 2014.
Jul 11 - 12:34 PM


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