Daily Archives: December 28, 2012

Alabama’s scout-team Irish imitators

Alabama quarterback Blake Sims, left, and teammate Ryan Kelly celebrate Sims' fourth-quarter touchdown against Arkansas. (AP photo by April L. Brown)

Alabama quarterback Blake Sims, left, and teammate Ryan Kelly celebrate Sims’ fourth-quarter touchdown against Arkansas. (AP photo by April L. Brown)

TUSCALOOSA, Alabama — When Alabama’s starting defense works against the scout-team offense, backup quarterback Blake Sims is playing the part of Notre Dame quarterback Everett Golson.

Sims is a running quarterback, as Golson is.

“He’s given us a good look,” Alabama linebacker Nico Johnson said. “He gave us a good look for Texas A&M week (playing Johnny Manziel) and he does a great job. He’s been doing it for the last couple years and he really makes us understand how important it is bc he breaks us down a lot by scrambling and throwing the ball some.”

On defense, true freshman linebacker Reggie Ragland is playing the part of Notre Dame All-American Manti Te’o. Ragland is 6-foot-2 and 247 pounds. He appeared in 10 games this year and made eight tackles. Te’o is 6-2 and 255 pounds with 103 tackles.

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Thoughts from Friday’s Alabama football practice

TUSCALOOSA, Alabama — The Crimson Tide practiced inside in full pads today, and injured receiver Kenny Bell (broken leg) went through some drills.

Bell had surgery on his leg Nov. 25. In addition to running a few short routes and catching passes, he also did some light jogging and skipping along with linebacker Denzel Devall, who hurt his knee last week. The “skipping” part is exactly as it sounds — they skipped like a child for about 20 or 30 yards.

Alabama coach Nick Saban has said it is uncertain if Bell will play in the BCS National Championship Game.

Alabama center Barrett Jones remained on the sideline with strength coach Scott Cochran, dressed in his football gear with a big black walking boot protecting his injured left foot. For most of the period in which reporters watched, Jones rode the exercise bike. He wore a black non-contact jersey.

True freshman linebacker Reggie Ragland is playing Notre Dame All-American Manti Te’o in practice with the scout team. Three different walk-ons wore No. 7 for receiver T.J. Jones for scout-team duty, and three others wore No. 80 for tight end Tyler Eifert.

Alabama will practice Saturay afternoon before taking off Sunday and Monday. The Tide will practice Monday afternoon and Tuesday morning before flying to Miami on Tuesday afternoon.

Some practice video shot by Brett Hudson:

Addition video of the Tide receivers, although it doesn’t include Bell:

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Countdown: 10 days until the BCS National Championship Game

Each day until the BCS National Championship Game, Daily Bama Blog contributor Brett Hudson will count down to kickoff, giving us bits and pieces of that day’s significance to Alabama and Notre Dame. Today is 10 days until the game, which means Brett is examining the number “10.”

–Alabama has given up 10.7 points per game this season, second only to Notre Dame, who has given up 10.3.

–Alabama is averaging 10 yards a punt return. Even more specific, Christion Jones is averaging 10.6 yards a return despite splitting time with Cyrus Jones and Dee Hart. Christian Jones ranks as 27th in the nation in average yards a punt return.

–Notre Dame has had 10 plays of over 40 yards this season, ranking in a tie for 79th nationally with Maryland, Bowling Green, Pittsburgh, South Carolina and Texas-San Antonio.

–Alabama’s defensive No. 10 is defensive back John Fulton, who has gotten more and more playing time throughout the season before suffering a turf toe injury in the loss to Texas A&M. Fulton played a great deal of the Tide’s defensive snaps in the loss to the Aggies. Fulton is credited with 15 tackles and five pass break-ups on the season.

– Alabama’s No. 10 on offense is AJ McCarron, looking to win back-to-back national championships as the starting quarterback. The last quarterback to win two national championships in college was Tim Tebow at Florida, but he was not the starter for both seasons. The last one to win back-to-back titles starting for both teams was Tommie Frazier, who quarterbacked the Nebraska Cornhuskers to back-to-back titles in 1994 and 1995. McCarron has thrown for 2,669 yards and 26 touchdowns this season on 191-286 passing.

–Notre Dame’s No. 10 is its third-best wide receiver in terms of yards, DeVaris Daniels. Daniels, the sophomore out of Vernon Hills, Ill., has 375 yards on 25 catches this season, but no touchdowns. Daniels had seven catches for 86 yards in Notre Dame’s win over Pitt, his best game of the season.

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