TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — There comes a point in the career of every Alabama football player who doesn’t play early where a spot opens up at their position.
The player must seize the moment or risk being passed by younger 4- and 5-star prospects looking to earn a spot in the rotation.
That time is now for Alabama offensive lineman Matt Womack. Womack, a former 3-star prospect from Alabama’s 2015 recruiting class, has been working at right tackle with the first offensive line group this spring.
Womack, a 6-foot-7, 320-pound behemoth, must continue to work hard if he wants to hold off talented players like Alex Leatherwood, a 5-star January enrollee.
“I think he’s really matured,” Alabama left guard Ross Pierschbacher said of Womack. “I think he kind of knows that this is his time to step up and really prove to the coaches that he’s the guy. I think he’s taken that to heart. He’s in here getting treatment and getting extra film work which is nice to see.”
Cam Robinson leaving school early for the NFL opened the door for Jonah Williams to slide over to left tackle. Williams started every game at right tackle as a true freshman last season.
Williams’ move created an opportunity for someone to step in at right tackle.
Williams and Womack have manned the tackle spots while Pierschbacher and Bradley Bozeman are returning starters at left guard and center, respectively. Lester Cotton has worked at right guard with the first group.
“We’ve seen flashes, but I think it’s more consistency and him being more dialed in,” Pierschbacher said of Womack. “We know that he has it in him, but I think it’s really just taking that step to open his eyes and know that it’s his time and he’s got to make the most out of it. He’s been doing a good job for us.”
Alabama football coach Nick Saban said Womack has “done a really, really good job.” Womack has mostly played in a reserve role to this point in his career. If he’s able to play well in Alabama’s scrimmages, he could earn a starting job this coming season.
“I thought he had a really good offseason,” Saban said. “His body is starting to develop, starting to show a lot of maturity, balance and body control, better conditioning, better ability to sustain more mental toughness, better idea of what he’s supposed to do and a better grasp of the offense, which allows him to play with more confidence. So, been really pleased with him.”