Alabama Practice Report 10/21: Tide Continues Tennessee Prep
Alabama continued its preparations for Tennessee on Wednesday, its third day of practice this week. The Crimson Tide practiced outside on the Thomas-Drew Practice Fields wearing full pads.
- Defensive lineman Jarran Reed, who did not practice Tuesday, was back practicing Wednesday.
- Freshman quarterback Blake Barnett, who missed practice all of last week plus Monday, was back for the second straight day. He had been hospitalized with an undisclosed illness.
- Center Ryan Kelly (concussion) was on the practice field for the third straight practice, wearing a black, non-contact jersey. When the offensive line lined up, he simulated snapping the ball and the subsequent footwork that comes after that but did not participate in any actual blocking.
- Sophomore J.C. Hassenauer, who replaced Kelly at Texas A&M last Saturday, again practiced with the first-team offensive line, though it appeared redshirt freshman Josh Casher also took some reps with the first-team group, as well.
- Running back Kenyan Drake (thigh bruise) practiced for the third day in a row.
- Running back Xavian Marks practiced with the receivers again Wednesday, but wore his usual No. 31 jersey. The freshman has been working as a scout-team wide receiver the last several weeks, likely in part because he is small in stature (5-foot-8, 160 pounds) and can thus simulate an opponent’s slot receiver better.
- Reggie Ragland practiced with the outside linebackers during the first viewing period.
- During those outside linebacker drills, coach Tosh Lupoi was fired up as usual. Moments after the media walked out onto the practice fields he shouted, “No. 1 in sacks in this conference, we’re only getting started!” (Alabama leads the SEC in sacks with 22.)
- Former Alabama quarterback Walter Lewis watched practice from the sidelines.
- Scouts from the Kansas City Chiefs, Arizona Cardinals and Atlanta Falcons.
As is customary on any game week practice, numerous Alabama players wore scout-team jerseys to emulate key Tennessee players. In most of these cases, the players have worn these numbers all week. Here is a list of a few at a couple of different position groups:
- Sophomore outside linebacker Jamey Mosley wore No. 11 of Volunteers starting quarterback Joshua Dobbs/freshman linebacker Austin Smith. Though he still worked with the linebackers and not the quarterbacks, he did throw a few short passes off to the side during Monday’s practice with fellow outside linebacker Christian Miller. Further adding to the speculation is that Mosley was a successful high school quarterback at Theodore prior to coming to Alabama.
Barnett was also absent Monday, so Alabama may have been in need of a fill in at quarterback.
- Miller wore No. 9 for sophomore defensive end Derek Barnett.
- At running back, Ronnie Clark wore sophomore running back Jalen Hurd’s No. 1, while Derrick Gore and Lawrence Erekosima wore No. 6 for former Alabama running back turned Tennessee Volunteer, Alvin Kamara. Kamara is a redshirt sophomore.
- For the wide receivers, Derek Kief wore sophomore Josh Malone’s No. 3.
- Among the inside linebackers, redshirt sophomore Walker Jones wore sophomore Colton Jumper’s No. 53, freshman Keaton Anderson wore junior Jalen Reeves-Maybin’s No. 21, freshman Adonis Thomas wore freshman Darrin Kirkland Jr.’s No. 34 and redshirt freshman Gussie Busch wore sophomore Cortez McDowell’s No. 20.
- In the secondary, freshman safety Shaun Burgess-Becker wore the No. 33 of senior defensive back LaDarrell McNeil. Bo Grant, a junior walk-on, wore safety Evan Berry’s No. 29. (Berry is the younger brother of Vols great Eric Berry.)
Saban and selected players will speak to the media after practice tonight around 6 p.m.