Alabama Practice Report 4/8: Avery Johnson Speaks to Team; A’Shawn Robinson Out
Alabama practiced outside on the Thomas-Drew Practice Fields on a humid day in Tuscaloosa Wednesday. It was the team's 10th of 15 spring practices.
- Avery Johnson, who was formally introduced as the school’s new men’s basketball coach earlier in the day Wednesday, watched the early portions of practice from the sideline before walking out and talking with Alabama football coach Nick Saban out on the field for a few minutes. When the team concluded its stretching, it huddled around Johnson, who spoke to them for a few minutes. (For video of that speech, click HERE. Media couldn't get any closer than this to hear better.)
- Defensive lineman A’Shawn Robinson, who was reportedly carted off the field during Monday’s practice with an ankle injury, was not spotted at practice. Instead, he was in the weight room, wearing a black, non-contact jersey. The injury isn’t expected to be too serious, though we’ll find out more tonight during Saban’s press conference.
- Safety Geno Smith was back at practice for the second straight time Wednesday. He was also practicing on Monday. Overall, he missed four total practices. Prior to his suspension, he was a regular as one of the two starting safeties on defense.
- The first-team defense appeared to be Tony Brown and Bradley Sylve at cornerback with Hootie Jones, Ronnie Harrison and Maurice Smith as the safeties. Reggie Ragland, Reuben Foster and Ryan Anderson were the linebackers.
- Bo Scarbrough, who had surgery Monday reportedly to repair a torn ACL, was not spotted for the second straight practice. His injury occurred during last Saturday’s spring scrimmage at Bryant-Denny Stadium.
- Kenyan Drake continues to work with both the running backs and wide receivers.
- Quarterback Cooper Bateman was again wearing a white jersey instead of the usual black non-contact jersey given to quarterbacks and practicing with the wide receivers. He was also wearing a white jersey on Monday, though he wasn’t catching passes; he was strictly working with the quarterbacks then. Saban said last Friday, it’s simply a move to find a role for Bateman because he is a good athlete and nothing permanent away from quarterback.
- Alphonse Taylor, who missed last Saturday’s scrimmage due to an MCL injury, was back for the second straight practice, though he appeared to be limping slightly. He wore a wrap around his right knee.
Taylor, who has been working as the first-team left guard for most of this spring, was practicing as the second-team right guard on Monday.
- Alabama’s first-team offensive line from left to right: Cam Robinson, Ross Pierschbacher, Ryan Kelly, Bradley Bozeman and Dominick Jackson. Overall, this is the third straight practice with this starting group.
- The second-team offensive line from left to right: Korren Kirven, Dallas Warmack, J.C. Hassenauer, Alphonse Taylor and Brandon Greene.
- Kirven remains with the offensive line and defensive linemen Dakota Ball and Johnny Dwight are still with the tight ends. Defensive back Ronnie Clark is still with the running backs. All four players have been at these positions all spring.
- Offensive lineman Grant Hill (medical leave) missed his 10th consecutive practice Wednesday.
- Cornerback Cyrus Jones (hip) and outside linebacker Denzel Devall (foot) wore black non-contact jerseys and rode stationary bikes for the 10th consecutive practice. Neither will play this spring due to their injuries.
- Former players Nick Perry and DeAndrew White were training inside the Hank Crisp Indoor Practice Facility.
Saban and selected players will speak to reporters at 6 p.m. tonight after today’s practice.
Check out videos and photos from Wednesday's practice: