In response to one of the diaries that centered on true freshman participation, here is a complete list of the true freshmen that played this past Saturday, in no particular order:
Rolando McClain, Josh Chapman, Darius Hanks, Alfred McCullough, William Vlachos, Luther Davis, Nick Fanuzzi, and Kareem Jackson.
That is the official list according to the participation section of the statistical summary on RollTide.com.
All told, eight true freshmen saw playing time. We had twenty one players report from the 2007 recruiting class, so that leaves thirteen as players who have not yet played. They include, again no particular order:
Brandon Gibson, Marquis Maze, Jeramie Griffin, Jeremy Elder, Chavis Williams, Tarence Farmer, Chris Underwood, Demetrius Goode, Nick Gentry, Patrick Crump, Alex Watkins, Jennings Hester, and Chris Lett.
So who among the thirteen will eventually see playing time this year?
For starters, Chris Lett, Demetrius Goode and Nick Gentry won't (injury issues). And you can rest assured that Alex Watkins, Jennings Hester, Chris Underwood, Chavis Williams, and Tarence Farmer likely won't either (depth issues).
That leaves Brandon Gibson, Marquis Maze, Jeramie Griffin, Jeremy Elder, and Patrick Crump.
Gibson likely won't play, and given our depth at receiver, there's really no reason he should. Maze, too, is unlikely, simply because with Arenas, Lowe, and others, we are fine at the return positions. Jeramie Griffin is a possibility, as are Elder and Crump, depending on their progress and the depth situation at their positions.
Basically, if you take out the injured players, approximately a little over one-half of this class will end up playing, and to be quite frank, no one should be shocked. And that fraction is only going to get bigger as time goes on.
The bottom line is this: with Saban, players who can contribute are going to play right away. This isn't going to like in the past where we redshirt most of the class, and they end up learning the playbook, etc. after a year on the scout team. Players will come in and contribute immediately.
And again, that's only going to become more prevalent in the future, especially with the way recruiting is going with Saban. All of these four and five star players that we are signing, rest assured that they aren't going to be sitting on the bench come next year. They'll be playing, and they'll play some meaningful snaps. The days of us signing a slew of players that need a year or more in a collegiate program to even potentially be to the point where they can contribute are over with the Nicktator in town.