Saturday, April 19, 2014

Four Pack of Talent: UA receives commitment bundle

While Alabama's annual spring football game was the definition of typical, the recruiting "bundle" that followed was atypical, even by Alabama's lofty standards.

UA welcomed roughly 35 of the most decorated prospects in the nation to the spring scrimmage, and when the day was done, four of them had given verbal commitments to the Crimson Tide.

5-star defensive back Minkah Fitzpatrick, 4-star safety Shawn Burgess-Becker, 4-star linebacker Leo Lewis, and 4-star wide receiver Calvin Ridley are the players in question, and 'Bama fans have no question but to be excited.

Within roughly 90 minutes, the "Twitterverse" began to see the names come in like states on an electoral college map. Several Crimson Tide beat writers became hesitant to write an article about the recruiting firestorm, in fear that yet another prospect would commit to the Tide while the article was being written.
While UA did close the day with four commitments, instead of the five that Hurt's tweet suggests, for about 30 minutes the number was indeed five. Wide receiver Jovon Durante, per media reports, had decommitted from West Virginia and given his pledge to Alabama, but that report was later nixed when Durante confirmed that he had not committed to 'Bama. However, Durante's verbal to UA still appears rather likely.
Without going through the "history" of Alabama recruiting during the Nick Saban era, excluding the obvious bundle that comes with signing day, Saturday's "triumph" of four verbal commitments in one evening has to mark one of the finest single-day recruiting conquests in recent UA history.

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A-Day '14: Yeldon shines, four prospects commit

Public spring football scrimmages are designed for the fans, and one certainly had to be a hardcore fan to “stomach” the 2014 edition of Alabama’s annual spring game.

In a game that featured subpar play from the quarterback position, offensive line, and the placekicker, "sloppy" seemed to be the word of the day at Bryant-Denny Stadium.

With a listed attendance of 73,506, the smallest in the Saban era, the White squad, led by quarterback Cooper Bateman, defeated the Crimson unit by the score of 17-13.

Scoring summary

3rd Quarter: 29-yard INT return for TD by D.J. Pettway (7-0 WHITE)
3rd Quarter: 1-yard TD run by T.J. Yeldon (7-7)
3rd Quarter: 41-yard FG by Adam Griffith (10-7 WHITE)

4th Quarter: Cooper Bateman 32-yard TD to ArDarius Stewart (17-7 WHITE)
4th Quarter: Blake Sims 55-yard TD to Chris Black (17-13 WHITE - PAT missed by Griffith)

Statistics of note

Cooper Bateman: 11-24 - 156 yards - 1 TD
Alec Morris: 3-7 - 1 INT - 9 yards

Kenyan Drake: 7 carries - 41 yards
Tyren Jones: 6 carries - 30 yards
Altee Tenpenny: 10 carries - 29 yards

Robert Foster: 4 receptions - 50 yards
ArDarius Stewart: 2 receptions - 59 yards
Raheem Falkins: 2 receptions - 28 yards

Blake Sims: 13-30 - 2 INTs - 178 yards - 1 TD

T.J. Yeldon: 11 carries - 96 yards - 1 TD
Derrick Henry: 8 carries - 24 yards

Chris Black: 3 receptions - 78 yards - 1 TD
Amari Cooper: 3 receptions - 45 yards
Christion Jones: 3 receptions - 22 yards

Game recap

Alabama beat writer Andrew Gribble provided live updates of the public scrimmage in a rather "notable play-esque" format. Click HERE to read Andrew's recap of today's action.

What did Nick Saban have to say to the media following Alabama's annual spring game? Click HERE to see Saban's press conference courtesy of 247Sports/BamaOnline.

A-Day news and notes

-T.J. Yeldon received MVP honors for the third consecutive spring game.

-AJ McCarron, C.J. Mosley, and Kevin Norwood, the 2013 team captains, were officially "printed" into 'Bama history at the Alabama Walk of Fame at Denny Chimes.
Click HERE for additional details...

-Roughly 35 recruits were in attendance for today's annual public scrimmage.

-Following today's game, Alabama received a total of four verbal commitments from four of the most highly touted players in the nation. In quite possibly the biggest single recruiting day of the Nick Saban era, the Crimson Tide certainly "won the day" in respect to building for the future. Expect an additional blog post, before the conclusion of the weekend, to be dedicated to Alabama's recruiting "blizzard" of success. Taking nothing away from today's action on the gridiron, but UA's recruiting bundle is the "highlight" of the day.

5-star defensive back Minkah Fitzpatrick
4-star safety Shawn Burgess-Becker
4-star linebacker Leo Lewis
4-star wide receiver Calvin Ridley 


Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Alabama “A-Day” scrimmage set for Saturday

After one month of practice, two scrimmages, some injuries, and the usual teaching tools, the Alabama Crimson Tide football team will conclude spring practice with the annual “A-Day” game.

Set to begin at 1 p.m. this Saturday at Bryant-Denny Stadium, and televised live via ESPNU, the spring game is indeed the culmination of practice until early August.

As for the basic "news and notes" in respect to the spring session, the information is quite a mixed bag.

Be sure to stay informed via Twitter for a recap of Alabama's spring game, including a blog post (link) tentatively set for late Saturday afternoon.


-Nose guard Darren Lake missed the majority of spring practice due to an injured pectoral muscle, which required surgery.

-After undergoing toe surgery in January, wide receiver DeAndrew White missed the entire month of spring practice. Per Nick Saban, White should be able to participate in the summer conditioning program.

-As noted in a prior blog post, defensive back Eddie Jackson suffered a torn ACL in Alabama's initial scrimmage of the spring session. In his own words, Nick Saban is confident that Jackson will be able to return in time for fall camp.

All about the verbal

As documented earlier this month, Alabama received verbal commitments from 4-star offensive lineman Richie Petitbon as well as 3-star defensive back Montrell Custis. At the time of publication, UA currently has a total of 10 verbal commitments in respect to the 2015 signing class.

Off the field issues

Running back Altee Tenpenny and linebacker Dillon Lee were arrested, in separate incidents, over the course of the spring session.

Tenpenny was arrested in late March for possession of marijuana, while Lee was arrested earlier this month and charged with DUI.

Click here for additional details...

Lupoi joins 'Bama staff

Tosh Lupoi has joined the Alabama staff as an "intern" per a statement issued by Nick Saban. Lupoi, a former assistant coach at the University of Washington, was recently under NCAA scrutiny following allegations that he gave impermissible benefits to a UW player. Lupoi has since been cleared by the NCAA of any wrongdoing.

Click here for additional details concerning the hire of Lupoi.

Scrimmage statistics

*The statistics listed below were provided by the University of Alabama. Any additional statistics recorded during the scrimmages were not disclosed to the public.


Blake Sims: 16-23 - 227 yards - 2 TDs
Cooper Bateman: 14-25 - 102 yards
Alec Morris: 9-12 - 57 yards

Kenyan Drake: 11 carries - 60 yards - 1 touchdown
Tyren Jones: 10 carries - 49 yards
Derrick Henry: 12 carries - 40 yards
Altee Tenpenny: 13 carries - 40 yards
T.J. Yeldon: 3 carries - 20 yards - 1 touchdown

Amari Cooper: 10 receptions - 190 yards - 2 touchdowns
Cam Sims: 2 receptions - 48 yards
Altee Tenpenny: 3 receptions - 23 yards
Christion Jones: 3 receptions - 21 yards
Raheem Falkins: 2 receptions - 21 yards

Trey DePriest: 8 tackles
Denzel Devall: 5 tackles - 2 tackles for loss - 1 sack
Reggie Ragland: 5 tackles - 1 sack - 1 pass break up
Landon Collins: 4 tackles - 1 tackle for loss - 1 blocked field goal


Blake Sims: 24-39 - 288 yards - 2 TD
Cooper Bateman: 16-31 - 160 yards - 1 TD
Alec Morris: 4-7 - 90 yards - 1 TD

Altee Tenpenny: 15 carries - 39 yards - 1 TD
Tyren Jones: 10 carries - 34 yards
Kenyan Drake: 4 carries - 19 yards

Amari Cooper: 9 receptions - 97 yards - 1 TD
Chris Black: 6 receptions - 89 yards
ArDarius Stewart: 1 reception - 66 yards - 1 TD
Kenyan Drake: 2 receptions - 55 yards - 1 TD
O.J. Howard: 3 receptions - 28 yards
Robert Foster: 4 receptions - 34 yards - 1 TD
Christion Jones: 3 receptions - 18 yards - 1 TD

Trey DePriest: 6 tackles - 1 tackle for loss - 1 forced fumble
Jarran Reed: 5 tackles - 1 tackle for loss - 1 pass break up
Jarrick Williams: 4 tackles - 1 tackle for loss

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