Stuart McNair

Don’t expect to learn much about quarterback battle from Alabama scrimmage

Alabama Coach Nick Saban is conducting the 10th Crimson Tide spring practice

There is more and more chatter about Alabama’s spring football game, but the A-Day Game is still about two weeks away, on Saturday, April 16.


Meanwhile, this Saturday could prove to be very important as Coach Nick Saban’s Crimson Tide has its eighth practice of the spring, and the first of two scrimmage events. There will be another scrimmage a week from Saturday, followed by the 15th and final practice of spring training when the open-to-the-public Crimson-White Game is held at Bryant-Denny Stadium at 2 p.m. on April 16.


Saturday’s scrimmage is closed to the public and the media, although numerous boosters, former players, and others will view the practice at Bryant-Denny Stadium.


The Tide held a two-hour practice session in shells on the Thomas-Drew Practice Fields Friday.


Typically, Alabama’s spring scrimmages prior to the A-Day Game feature one that concentrates on the passing game and one on the running game. In those springs when Alabama is having a contested quarterback battle – meaning this year for the third consecutive year – Saban does not release detailed quarterback statistics. That is in great part because the quarterbacks may work at times with the first offense, at times with the second or even third, and against different defensive units.


Those quarterback candidates are Cooper Bateman (last year’s back-up to Jacob Coker), David Cornwell, and Blake Barnett. Jalen Hurts, a true freshman who entered The University in January, has not been mentioned when Saban discusses the quarterback battle.


There will be another quarterback battle on A-Day. The University announced that halftime entertainment will feature a Quarterback Challenge with former Bama quarterbacks Coker, Blake Sims, and John Parker Wilson competing in a passing skills exhibition.


There also will be an alumni flag football game at 11:30 a.m. of the A-Day Game, followed by the Captains Ceremony at Denny Chimes at 12:15.


This is the 10th Alabama spring practice under Saban.

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