Defense Stays Ahead

Who did Alabama Head Football Coach Mike Shula see that impressed him on the defensive side of the during the Tide's first fall scrimmage Monday afternoon?

"Pretty much all of the starters," Shula said after Alabama's scrimmage on Monday afternoon.

In addition to the starters, there were some back-ups who drew some positive attention to themselves as well. Matt Collins led the defensive unit with six tackles, a fumble recover and a pass break up on the first play of the scrimmage. Collins continued to prove he could stick his nose into any pile.

"He's been real physical all week," Shula said in noting individual performances that stood out on the defensive side of the ball.

Shula also mentioned Chris Keys, whose two tackles and one pass break up were all hard-hitting deliveries.

"Chris Keys showed up and made a couple of plays," Shula said. "He's a physical type player. He still doesn't quite know what he's doing yet but he has a chance to do some real good things for us."

Defensive Coordinator Joe Kines said being ahead in installing defensive schemes can put young players like Keys behind early in the fall camp.

"Some of them don't know ‘come here' from ‘sic ‘em' yet, but we'll get that straightened out," he said.

It wasn't a flawless effort for the defense on Monday, however, as the unit gave up a 67-yard rushing touchdown to Theo Townsend, and eased up early in the second half of the scrimmage.

"I think towards the middle and as we moved the ball into plus territory there's just a little bit of a lack of concentration," Shula said. "We do that for good reason, to put our defense in a situation where they've got to bow their next and not let them have a yard, but overall I was pleased with them."

Kines was hesitant to talk about individual efforts, but agreed that his defense is progressing ahead of a satisfactory pace.

"We'll go over there and look at that tape (to evaluate individual efforts), Kines said. "We're way ahead of where we were the first couple of years. We threw a lot at them the first three days. We put a lot of things in and we've got a lot of things in right now. We've got about two more days to do that then we've got to start shaking it down and get on the things we're going live with through the rest of the year."

Matt Collins (6 tackles, FR, PBU), Marcus Carter (5 tackles), Roman Harper (5 tackles, sack), Simeon Castille (4 tackles, PBU), Jake Wingo (4 tackles), Travis Robinsion (4 tackles, PBU), Demarcus Waldrop (4 tackles), Rudy Griffin (4 tackles, TFL, sack), Juwan Simpson (3 tackles, sack), Eryk Anders (3 tackles), Jeffrey Dukes (3 tackles), Marcel Stamps (3 tackles), Justin Britt (3 tackles, TFL, FR), Zach Schreiber (2 tackles), Aaron McDaniel (2 tackles, FR), Freddie Roach (2 tackles), Reamer (2 tackles, INT), Lionel Mitchell (2 tackles), Chris Keys (2 tackles, PBU), Byron Walton (2 tackles), Stephen Kulback (2 tackles), Keith Saunders (2 tackles, TFL), Brandon Deaderick (tackle, sack), Lorenzon Washington (tackle, 2 FF, FR), Justin Johnson (tackle), Terrence Jones (tackle), Bobby Greenwood (tackle), DeMeco Ryans (tackle, TFL, FF), Anthony Madison (tackle), J.P. Adams (tackle), Prince Hall (tackle), Bryan Kilpatrick (tackle), Baron Huber (tackle), Wallace Gilberry (2 QBH)

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