Alabama Starts Spring Practice Today!

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Are you ready to get this thing started again? That's right! Spring practice starts today! It is a one day introductory practice and then the team will be off a week for spring break and then return for full speed practice before April 17th for the A-Day game that will be televised by ESPN.

If you thought last year was fun, I have a feeling that we are going to have a lot of fun learning about the 2010 edition of the Crimson Tide. The foundation of the 2010 team will be laid in the spring practice, especially with several freshmen reporting early to dissipate in the spring.

New star blue chip players like defensive back DeMarcus Milliner and John Fulton have a chance to step right into starting roles by undergoing early enrollment. The chance to learn the complex defensive playbook early should be very valuable to the team. Kareem Jackson did the very same thing as a young defensive back and started his freshman year. Coming out early this year for the draft in his junior year, his development early is the blueprint for success for young defensive backs trying to make a break into the Alabama defensive backfield. I look forward to see what those five-star players can do, but it has to be earned on the field... and spring practice is the perfect place to find out what they're "made of."

Other players are coming to the forefront that have been waiting in the wings. One of the redshirt players that has been highly anticipated in the Crimson Tide fan base is DJ Fluker. As if the offensive side of the ball wasn't already loaded enough, here comes the big man coming into play offensive tackle where All-American Mike Johnson left off. Granted, he will have to win it, but look at the tools that he has. Standing 6'7" and weighing at 350 pounds, he is a freak of nature physically. He was one of the crowning jewels of the national championship recruiting class of 2009. He sit out one year to redshirt and to prepare for this year. Look for him to make a big impact on offense. Can you imagine Mark Ingram and Trent Richardson (and possibly Eddie Lacy) running behind the offensive line that we have coming up this year?

The biggest question mark on this team is the defense. The defense loses 9 out of 11 starters. The impact will be tremendous; I do believe that the depth is like it has never been at Alabama since the Bear years. This year's recruiting class was heavy on defensive backs, and it couldn't have come at a better time. Also the players that we've already been playing in games will have valuable game experience. Alabama is stacked with fast physical linebackers in the defensive line rotation looks very strong with a powerful Marcell Dareus & Josh Chapman coming on. Be on the lookout for Kerry Murphy, a back flipping nosetackle. One place to look forward to is the return of Dont'a Hightower, the freshman sensation who hurt his knee this year. He will be back in the ball but will work out but not scrimmage with the team in the spring.

There will be invariably surprises this year in the spring just like every year. Last year it was Robbie Green coming out of obscurity to get regular playing time in the defensive backfield rotation. It will be this year's player to make a name for himself in the same fashion? Who knows? We should all know by the A-Day game.

Many people are picking Alabama to defend their national title this year. I say it all depends on the defense gels and the return of Dont'a Hightower. The offense will be fine as long as everybody stays healthy.

I hope you're looking forward to the 2010 edition of the Crimson Tide... I know I am!

Get a taste fof what it is like for the linebackers in Spring practice with Sal Sunseri:

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