Bama's Robinson SEC All-Freshman

Alabama is not ordinarily among teams having a lot of football players make the Freshman all-star teams. That's because the Crimson Tide has stacked good recruiting classes on top of good recruiting classes, making it a bit harder for a first-year player to make the impact at Bama that he could for a team that is rebuilding.

But A'Shawn Robinson, a 6-4, 320-pound Alabama freshman defensive end from Fort Worth, Texas, was one who was able to overcome the odds. He was the Crimson Tide's lone selection on the Freshman All-Southeastern Conference team.

For as long as anyone has kept up with reasons players choose a college, the most important factor has been the opportunity for playing time. When Bama Coach Nick Saban recruits, he asks a player if he is a better player as a high school senior than he was as a high school freshman. The answer is obvious, and Saban tells the prospects they will get better at Alabama. Moreover, he trumps playing time with the NFL draft. The players being recruited by Saban want to play professional football, and they know that no team prepares players for the NFL like Bama does.

Even so, 14 true freshmen and 10 redshirt freshmen have seen duty for the Crimson Tide this year.

Robinson, a five-star prospects and second team prep All-America coming out of Arlington Heights High School, had an outstanding year as a back-up defensive lineman for the Tide.

He has played in every game and ranks seventh on the team in tackles with 31. He led Bama in sacks with five (for 29 yards in losses) and also had five quarterback pressures and a blocked kick.

Robinson and his Alabama teammates will conclude the season on Jan. 2 at the Louisiana Superdome in New Orleans when the Crimson Tide takes on Oklahoma in the Sugar Bowl.

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