Photo report: only one day left

Everyone's primary focus remains on winning Thursday's game, but the players are still clearly enjoying the bowl trip.

A good chunk of Bama's football future share a laugh at practice. Charlie Peprah #26 cornerback, Freddie Roach #8 middle linebacker, Roman Harper #41 free safety and Todd Bates #56 defensive end are all true freshmen, expected to contribute next year.

Reggie Myles shows his game face. Since the Mississippi State game, Myles has been on a tear, playing with abandon and setting the tone for the Bama D. Despite missing a large part of several games, Myles finished tied for sixth on the team in tackles with 54.

Santonio Beard cuts up with his teammates before practice. In speaking with the media this week, Coach Franchione has referred to Beard as a "home run hitter," capable of breaking loose for a long gain on any given play.

Alabama Defensive Coordinator Carl Torbush surveys his troops before practice. Since the LSU meltdown, the Tide defense has improved every week. That's senior Rover Adam Cox stretching.

Senior strong safety Shontua Ray indicates that it's as much a mental game as anything else. A badly sore knee has limited Ray's effectiveness this season, but he finished with 24 tackles.

Darius Gilbert throws the football before practice. Despite having lost his starting job to a younger player, Gilbert kept a positive attitude. In fact, Coach Torbush has made a point of praising the middle linebacker's unselfish play. That's Rob Saucier (#47), Alabama's oldest walk-on player, looking on to the left.

Roman Harper and Charlie Peprah "yuk it up" just after the team arrived for practice. Both defensive backs redshirted this season but are expected to contend for starting jobs in 2002.

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