TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — The University of Alabama football team changed things up on the offensive line, as junior Lester Cotton worked at right tackle during the media observation period of Wednesday’ practice.
Redshirt freshman Deonte Brown was at right guard.
Sophomore Matt Womack, who had been at right tackle, was taking reps with the second unit at left tackle. The rest of the second unit, from left to right, had junior Josh Casher at left guard, senior J.C. Hassenauer at center, sophomore Richie Petitbon at right guard and early enrollee Alex Leatherwood at right tackle.
Cotton had been working at right guard all spring, and started five games last season, two on the left side and three on the right.
Alabama’s been known to experiment with the offensive line during the spring. However, Nick Saban dropped a pretty strong hint after last Saturday’s scrimmage by saying Cotton “probably could play right tackle if we needed him to.”
On Monday, reporters saw redshirt freshman Chris Owens at right guard with the first unit while Cotton was watching the drill, and Brown took reps with the second team. On Wednesday, Owens was lined up as a center.
Alabama will hold its second scrimmage on Friday afternoon at Bryant-Denny Stadium, as Saban doesn’t like to practice during Easter weekend. The scrimmage is closed to the public.
- Alabama is still being cautious with running back Damien Harris (sprained foot), who was dressed but watching individual drills.
- Running backs B.J. Emmons (foot) and Bo Scarbrough (leg) continued to wear black, non-contact jerseys while participating in individual drills.
- Linebacker Shaun Dion Hamilton (knee) and cornerback Jared Mayden (hip) were also in black no-contact jerseys, but with the team in full pads they were participating less than the recovering running backs.
What we saw
- During a pass-rushing drill Da’Shawn Hand was working as an interior lineman alongside Da’Ron Payne. The two outside linebackers were Christian Miller and Jamey Mosley, but it was being run at the same time as a nickel-coverage drill.
- Rashaan Evans and Dylan Moses were with the outside linebackers during individual drills, while Ben Davis worked with the inside linebackers. However, when the nickel-package drills began they went back to their usual sports with Evans and Moses lining up as interior linebackers and Davis with the outside linebackers.
- The secondary for the nickel package featured cornerbacks Trevon Diggs, Anthony Averett and Tony Brown, and safeties Minkah Fitzpatrick and Ronnie Harrison. Taking reps with the second unit were Aaron Robinson, Shyheim Carter and Levi Wallace, along with Deionte Thompson and Hootie Jones.
- Among those watching practice were former quarterback Greg McElroy and ESPN colleague Marcus Spears, plus former Crimson Tide defensive lineman Dalvin Tomlinson.