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Alabama HC Nick Saban indicated that either redshirt junior QB Cooper Bateman or redshirt freshman QB Blake Barnett will start the season-opener against USC.

"When we make this choice, when we make this decision," Saban said, "it's with what's going to give us the best chance to win this game, but it's also about future development of our players." True freshman Jalen Hurts made an admirable push for consideration this month, but Saban indicated that his handle of the offense isn't up-to-par just yet. Saban said that the team has "a lot of confidence" in the 6-foot-3, 220-pound Bateman. Phil Savage believes he is the probable starter for the coming season.
Source: ESPN.com
Aug 29 - 2:39 PM

Senior Bowl executive director and Alabama announcing analyst Phil Savage said that he believes that Alabama redshirt junior QB Cooper Bateman will see the first snaps against USC in the season-opener.

"Based on what I saw [Wednesday]," Savage told WNSP 105.5 FM, "I get the sense that we'll see Cooper Bateman and Jalen Hurts in the first couple of games with Nick Saban and the staff trying to figure out who really gives them the best opportunity long-term by the third game of the year." Savage's predictions line up with earlier reports about Bateman and Hurts. In April, Saban said that he held a slight edge due to his general experience compared to that of redshirt freshmen Blake Barnett and true freshman Jalen Hurts, with Hurts impressing this summer.
Source: al.com
Aug 27 - 6:26 PM

Alabama head coach Nick Saban predicted more freshmen will play for the Crimson Tide in 2016 "than we've had for a while around here."

We wonder if one could be freshman quarterback Jalen Hurts, who has drawn the attention of Alabama fans this offseason for his mobility and possible big play ability. Beat writer Rainer Sabin notes "Right tackle Jonah Williams, running back B.J. Emmons and defensive tackle Raekwon Davis" as first year players who could contribute this season. Saban has not started a true freshman at quarterback during his time at Alabama.
Source: AL.com
Aug 23 - 11:23 AM

Rivals recruiting director Mike Farrell called Alabama five-star 2017 verbal RB commit Najee Harris "the best running back prospect I’ve seen since Leonard Fournette."

In this week's update of the Rivals100, the outlet pushed Harris ahead of DT Marvin Wilson for the No. 1 overall ranking in the country. The last time Rivals ranked a running back at the pole position was back in 2009, in the form of Bryce Brown. Farrell writes that the 6-foot-2, 220-pound Harris earned the bump due to his "rare and freakish ability at the position." He could well flip his commitment on Alabama, too, making this a fun one to watch once we hit the recruiting stretch run in a few months.
Source: Rivals
Aug 22 - 2:08 PM

In the first 2016 release of the Associated Press Top 25, Alabama landed at No. 1.

No surprise there. Alabama was also ranked at No. 1 in the first Amway Coaches Poll earlier this month. In the AP release, the defending national champs drew 33 of 61 first-place votes. Still the bridesmaid and not the bride, Clemson landed at No. 2 after receiving 16 first-place votes. Oklahoma, Florida State and LSU finish out the top-five, with Ohio State, Michigan, Stanford, Tennessee and Notre Dame also landing in the top-10. This is the eighth consecutive season in which Alabama has begun the season as one of the AP's five best teams in the country.
Source: ESPN.com
Aug 21 - 12:08 PM

ESPN college football commentator Kirk Herbstreit believes Alabama could play two quarterbacks in the opener against USC.

While USC HC Clay Helton has already named Max Browne the starter for the Week 1 showdown with Alabama, Tide HC Nick Saban has yet to fill in the other side of the equation. Herbstreit doesn't necessarily see Saban settling on a starter before the opener. That in-and-of itself is not outlandish -- Worldwide Leader colleague Travis Haney wrote earlier this offseason that a two-quarterback play was in the realm of possibility for the defending champs. Of more interest, Herbstreit sees true freshman Jalen Hurts as one of the two. It is a little difficult to envision Saban embarking on a repeat title quest with a true freshman behind center, but Hurts has clearly hung and then some in the competition with Blake Barnett and Cooper Bateman.
Aug 20 - 7:43 PM

Alabama redshirt freshman CB Kendall Sheffield is transferring to Blinn junior college, according to 247 Sports' Ryan Bartow.

Sheffield will spend two semesters down at the JUCO level and the corner will transfer back to the FBS level after that and SEC schools are open for business, according to Bartow. Sheffield was away from the Alabama program for some time was did not practice with the Crimson Tide. Nick Saban would not reveal too much to the media, and it is possible he was left in the dark on Sheffield's decision. Sheffield will have three years of eligibility once returning to the FBS level. He is a former five-star recruit.
Source: 247 Sports
Aug 18 - 10:22 AM

Alabama HC Nick Saban indicated that the Crimson Tide would be "happy to have [redshirt freshman CB Kendall Sheffield] back."

Touchdown Alabama Magazine's Stephen M. Smith reported on Tuesday that Sheffield is planning on transferring. Saban wouldn't confirm that (he deemed Sheffield's status to be uncertain), but did extend a bridge to the former five-star recruit. "We'd like for him to be part of the program if that's what he chooses," Saban told reporters. While five-star transfers in-and-of themselves are a rarity, Alabama opens the door to it (not by their choosing, of course) simply because of the stacked state of their roster. Saban wouldn't put a cutoff date as to when he would no longer allow Sheffield's return. Classes at Alabama got underway on Wednesday.
Source: ESPN.com
Aug 17 - 2:46 PM

Alabama redshirt freshman CB Kendall Sheffield will transfer.

This, according to Touchdown Alabama Magazine's Stephen M. Smith, who reports that Sheffield left the university on Saturday. Backing up this report, the fact that Sheffield did not practice in either session on Monday. The 5-foot-11, 183-pounder was a five-star recruit for the 2015 cycle and ranked as 247Sports' composite's No. 20 overall prospect in that class. He is the sixth Alabama player to transfer out this offseason. HC Nick Saban has addressed the recent rash of transfers, saying that there has been a cultural shift toward "immediate self-gratification." Saban, of course, plays the developmental long-game. That has worked well enough for Alabama even as players here and there trickle out of the program.
Aug 16 - 1:59 PM

Alabama redshirt freshman CB Kendall Sheffield is still not practicing.

Apparently Sheffield's status with the team is "very much in doubt." No legitimate information or reason was given, but there is plenty of speculation about a family issue being the cause of Sheffield's absence. The former five-star recruit was expected to compete for a starting job this season. Alabama is in a bit of a pickle with their defensive backfield, but we expect a Nick Saban and Alabama's defensive front to mask the issues.
Source: SB Nation
Aug 16 - 11:15 AM

According to ESPN's Trevor Matich, freshman QB Jalen Hurts possesses the best "arm talent" among Alabama's quarterbacks.

Matich continues the praise by saying Hurts has maturity beyond his first year status. "If teammates think he's best option, (Hurts could) be starting by week three," Matich tweeted. Cooper Bateman and David Cornwell are competing with Hurts for the starting job, and the Alabama fan base's excitement for Hurts is growing by the day. The Crimson Tide open with USC and Western Kentucky before facing Ole Miss in week three.
Aug 16 - 10:56 AM

An NFL personnel man coined Alabama senior edge rusher Tim Williams "The Predator."

If the shoe fits. Casual fans may not know Williams very well, but that's only because the stacked Tide used him solely as a pass-rushing specialist last year. The 6-foot-4, 237-pounder bagged one sack in every 18.2 snaps last year. "Williams has tremendous get-off after the snap and can explode up the field to challenge the edge of the saltiest offensive tackle," wrote NFL.com's Lance Zierlein. "What makes Williams particularly lethal is his combination of hand usage and cornering around the edge. Like most Alabama defensive linemen, he's excellent with his hands and plays with a mega-motor."
Source: NFL.com
Aug 13 - 4:18 PM

Alabama senior ILB Reuben Foster indicated that he has lost 10 pounds during the offseason.

Foster weighed in at 235 pounds during the spring, but he has dropped that down to 225. Said the defensive stalwart, ""I’m more explosive. It might sound strange to be 225 at linebacker, but it feels great. My knees aren’t hurting. My back isn’t hurting. It feels great." Last season he registered 73 tackles (8.0 for loss), nine pass breakups and a trio of quarterback hurries.
Source: SEC Country
Aug 9 - 4:04 PM

Previously suspended junior T Cam Robinson lined up as the team's starting left tackle when Alabama opened fall practice.

Nick Saban stood by Robinson during each step of the process. The rest of the starters included left guard Lester Cotton, center Ross Pierschbacher, right guard Bradley Bozeman and right tackle Jonah Williams. There are a lot of questions surrounding Alabama's offense, outside of the receiver and tight end spots. Even with a new offensive line and stable of running backs, we all know Alabama will continue to control the game on the ground.
Aug 8 - 8:23 AM

A rival SEC coach believes Alabama's "future" at quarterback "is probably [sophomore] Blake Barnett."

"The future is probably Blake Barnett, but Cooper Bateman was ahead of him at the end of the season and does some things athletically that they can work with, he said. "They’re looking for somebody to step up." Barnett was a five-star recruit out of high school who drew rave reviews this spring. HC Nick Saban has indicated that Bateman currently has the lead in the competition, so Barnett is obviously going to have to outplay him in practice over the next three weeks to earn the nod against USC.
Aug 5 - 6:30 PM


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