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Spring practice: 10 positions, 10 questions

Spring practice: 10 positions, 10 questions

Alabama’s first spring practice is in the books. Given the way the 2018 season ended, there will probably be greater fan scrutiny on 2019 spring practices than in recent years.

Here’s our look at 10 key positions headed into spring, which could see more shuffling of personnel than expected given the turnover in position assistant jobs and the new perspective first-year assistants might bring to their evaluations.

The Citadel preview: Tide’s goals are to limit injuries, exposure

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The Citadel preview: Tide’s goals are to limit injuries, exposure

Games against teams like The Citadel have become a necessary evil in top-level college football. Top teams can’t play challenging games every week, because football is an emotional sport at the college level, the repercussions of a loss are too severe, and sometimes, the starters just need a break.

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MSU wrap-up: Effect of injuries shows how tenuous Bama’s position could be

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MSU wrap-up: Effect of injuries shows how tenuous Bama’s position could be

The Mississippi State game was always one to circle this year, thanks to a veteran Bulldog team with good lines, linebackers and a solid senior quarterback. The game came up on the schedule immediately following an LSU game that is always physical, no matter the outcome.

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MSU preview: Bulldogs could be Tide’s biggest regular-season test

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MSU preview: Bulldogs could be Tide’s biggest regular-season test

Mississippi State isn’t all that likely to beat Alabama, but Tua Tagovailoa making a second consecutive fourth-quarter appearance isn’t just a possibility; we think it’s all but assured. With Auburn a bad matchup for what Alabama is capable of doing with its defensive front, the game against the Bulldogs of Starkville, Miss., may end up being Alabama’s biggest challenge of the 2018 regular season.

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LSU wrap-up: Bama dominates in every way in thrashing of Tigers

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LSU wrap-up: Bama dominates in every way in thrashing of Tigers

Alabama came into this game with no question marks on offense. It displayed no question marks on defense in this game, either. As long as kickers aren’t involved, this looks like a team without a weakness.

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LSU preview: Are Tigers that tough, or is the drama being invented?

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LSU preview: Are Tigers that tough, or is the drama being invented?

Is this matchup for real? Is LSU capable of slowing Tagovailoa down? What is reality for the LSU offense – is it the 36 points scored against Georgia, or is it the 19 put up against Mississippi State and Florida? LSU’s best output of the season – 45 points against defense-illiterate Ole Miss – ties for Alabama’s second-lowest of the season, a win over Texas A&M that left some people wondering what was wrong with Bama football.

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Previews 2018: Alabama Crimson Tide

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Previews 2018: Alabama Crimson Tide

The 2018 team needs to completely rebuild the back seven of the defense, but it’s a testament to Saban’s recruiting that despite having just two starters returning among the linebackers and defensive backs, every unit rates as “Very Good” with the potential to be much more than that. Offensively, Alabama must decide who it is and who it wants to be, as not only is there a full-blown quarterback controversy afoot, but also a significant change in offensive coordinator leadership.

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A-Day wrap-up: More aggression, more movement, more questions

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A-Day wrap-up: More aggression, more movement, more questions

At most A-Day games, especially those overseen by Nick Saban, it isn’t so much what you see as what you don’t see.

There aren’t a lot of complicated blitzes. There aren’t a bunch of funky offensive sets. There isn’t much more to be seen other than a basic overview of the depth chart, on-the-hoof estimations of successful (or not-so-successful) strength-and-conditioning efforts, and maybe a few tendencies sneak through in years – like this one – where Alabama is replacing an offensive coordinator.

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