Saban comforted by McCarron's experience

Alabama head coach Nick Saban is comfortable with his quarterback situation in A.J. McCarron, but says the key for the Crimson Tide is to develop more depth behind him.

Last year A.J. McCarron beat out Phillip Sims for the starting quarterback position right before the season started.

Not knowing who you're starting quarterback is through the spring, summer and right up to Week 1 of the college football season? Talk about stress.

But this year, Alabama head coach Nick Saban—though he will have to worry about a few other position battles—won't have to decipher who will be his quarterback.

At SEC Media Days in Hoover, Ala. this week, Saban was asked how much better he feels heading into this year as opposed to last year regarding the quarterback situation.

"I think any time you have an experienced quarterback, there's a comfort level," he said. "Because of knowledge and experience, because there's so many intangibles that go with being a good quarterback, like judgment, accuracy, timing, leadership to affect other people on the offensive team to execute with a little more consistency. The experience you have at that position always makes you feel a little better about all that."

In his first year as a starter, McCarron threw for 2,634 yards and 16 touchdowns with only five interceptions, and was named the MVP of the national championship game. His 2011 efforts have earned him nominations for the Maxwell, Manning, Davey O'Brien and Walter Camp awards for the upcoming season.

However, despite the Crimson Tide's confidence in McCarron, Saban addressed the lack of option behind him.

"The key for us is we're going to have to develop some depth at that position," he said. "A.J. had a really good spring. Hopefully he's poised to continue to improve and have a really good year for us this year."

Behind McCarron sits redshirt freshman Phillip Ely and incoming freshman Alec Morris. But looking ahead, Alabama has five-star quarterback Cooper Bateman in its 2013 recruiting class. An ideal situation for the Tide is for McCarron to be outstanding in 2012, stay for his senior season and have Bateman learn under him, Ely and Morris so that he can perhaps be Bama's quarterback of the future.


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