Capstone Report with DC: Reloading on Defense
Heading into the 2018 season, one of the primary challenges facing Nick Saban and his coaching staff is figuring out how to replace numerous contributors on defense.
The Crimson Tide lost eight starters on defense from last season including Minkah Fitzpatrick at strong safety, Rashaan Evans at linebacker, Da'Ron Payne at nose guard and Da'Shawn Hand at defensive end.
To kick off the week, DC from Golden Shores Productions and former Alabama fullback Martin Houston examined how Alabama football could still reload on defense this season despite the heavy losses from the 2017 national championship team.
He broke down the lack of experience on defense and how new faces such as redshirt freshman Phidarian Mathis and sophomore LaBryan Ray on the defensive line.
In addition to the players, Nick Saban elevated Tosh Lupoi to defensive coordinator following Jeremy Pruitt's departure to Knoxville as Tennessee's head coach.
DC relayed how the timing of Pruitt's departure from Tuscaloosa came as a surprise to Saban.
"I don't think Nick Saban was planning on having to replace a defensive coordinator this year." DC said. "I think he believed he had one or maybe two more years with Jeremy Pruitt before Jeremy Pruitt got a high-profile type SEC job that he may leave for."
Regardless of the timing, DC believes that Saban was grooming Lupoi to be Pruitt's successor as defensive coordinator.
"I think Nick Saban was grooming Tosh Lupoi I think from the very beginning with him coming on in 2014." DC said.
Later in the conversation, the Golden Shores Production analyst looked at the various strengths and weakness in Lupoi's coaching profile and the potential for the outside linebackers position to be a critical component for the defense this season.
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