Photo report: new players get personal attention

Returning players report in this afternoon, but the veterans won't actually take to the practice field until Friday. So these early sessions represent the best chance most of the Tide newcomers will have to get some genuinely personalized attention from the Tide staff.

When the veterans arrive later in the week, the practice field will be flooded with athletes. So frankly the first couple of days for newcomers represent some of the best coaching time the youngsters can get. Here Carl Torbush watches closely as outside linebacker Todd Bates (#56) and defensive end Mark Anderson (#47) take their stance.

As Coach Franchione indicated earlier, super-frosh Charlie Peprah (#26) will be worked at both safety and cornerback. Today it was Coach Case's turn to get in some one-on-one teaching with the talented athelete.

Starting Friday, Quarterbacks Coach Les Koenning will have numerous bodies to work with. But right now Spencer Pennington (#13) is receiving every bit of the attention (and snaps).

Relatively few athletes can make a football coach's job difficult--just finding enough bodies to fill out the respective positions. So the Tide staff has been forced to concentrate more on teaching and drills than full-fledged football. But freshman placekicker Mike McLaughlin (#46) has an advantage, in that kickers are used to working alone.

As is always the case, freshmen linemen are more likely to redshirt than not. But in J.B. Closner (#74), Mark Sanders (#63), Von Ewing (#60) and Boone Stutz (#61), Alabama has brought in solid talent for the future. Note Dennis Alexander peering in at his new teammates in the background.

Freshmen Anthony Madison (#38) and Roman Harper (#41) take a quick break from action. Both athletes have so far been drilling exclusively with Coach Thurmond, working to get their technique down as 'cover corners.'

As the defense takes a break from drills, Carl Torbush and Franchione take a moment with one of the top athletes in this class. He could wind up either inside or out, but linebacker Freddie Roach (#8) will almost certainly get a chance to play as a true freshman--at least in a backup role.

As a former star tailback for Eddie Robinson at Grambling, Coach Fobbs brings plenty of knowledge to his job. Here he's teaching freshman Marquez Dupree (#22) the fine points of making a proper cut.

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