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The Jumbo Package: 08-30-10

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All eyes on the DBs when (if?) the depth chart comes out today.  (Michelle Lepianka Carter | Tuscaloosa News)
All eyes on the DBs when (if?) the depth chart comes out today. (Michelle Lepianka Carter | Tuscaloosa News)

Positions begin to finalize as game week arrives | TideSports.com

All right gang, it's finally game week, and we should have a depth chart at some point today.  I'm sure all of you will be headed straight for the DBs with us since that's the position that's been the most up in the air all camp long: 

"What’s been most difficult through this camp is, when you have a new group and you have guys that haven’t played, you’d really like to get some continuity in practice about guys playing together. We’ve continually had two, three guys out and haven’t been able to do that," Saban said. "But saying all that, I’m really pleased with the progress that we’ve made and the improvement we’ve made with the group. Without having everybody healthy and on the field, it’s hard to figure out which is the best combination for us, relative to nickel and dime and different personnel groups that we’ve always been able to utilize on the field."

Will Alabama's special teams still be special? | al.com

The second position our eyes will all probably run to on the depth chart is kicker, but don't read too much into who's listed at starter:

"If we needed to use two kickers, we certainly would," Saban said this preseason, repeating a line from the spring.

Until someone proves they can handle all of the kicking responsibilities, look for situational kickers and pray.

Tide's Square looks forward to fresh start | montgomeryadvertiser.com | Montgomery Advertiser

Minor injuries to Julio Jones and Roy Upchurch in the win over FIU last year were the ones that are generally remembered since they slowed both for much of the season, but when Damian Square was knocked out of the game with a season ending knee injury the Tide lost one of it's most promising pass rushers.  Square is now back on the field and already looking like a solid option in special pass rushing packages:

"We think he has some pass-rush ability so we're excited to have him back and we're pleased with the job he's done to this point," Saban said. "He's a hard worker."With that, we'd hope for continued improvement and I guess, with the more knowledge and experience he gets, the better he'll play for us."

Before the injury, he was already a big part of the pass rush package last season, so look for his development this year.  If he can stay healthy, by the end of the season he should be a household name.

Notes: Mark Barron wasn't at Tide's practice Saturday, but absence was excused | al.com

Yes, Barron was out, but the absence was excused (though no reason was given), but that's not what the link is for.  Scroll down a little bit and you'll get this:

The September issue of Men's Fitness magazine features a behind-the-scenes look at the Crimson Tide's "Fourth Quarter" strength-and-conditioning program. The six-page "exclusive" report goes into great detail about the offseason program, which features three days of lifting and four days of running (two days sprinting, two days of running stadium steps) per week. The article includes a detailed snapshot of a typical Friday workout in the weight room.

That's right folks, now you too can do your part in the process by being the most physically dominant fan base in the country.

and etc.

SEC Football By The Numbers: Preseason - Alabama tries to go where no SEC team has been before | al.com

For those of you who like trivia.

With Rolando McClain suiting up in the NFL, it's Dont'a Hightower's turn to lead a fearsome Tide 'D' | al.com

OTS linked to this in the fanshots yesterday, but if you missed it head over now.

Less sunlight, air in Bryant-Denny Stadium a challenge for Tide's groundskeeper | al.com

Estes: Still more success in store for Saban, ’Bama - College football- nbcsports.msnbc.com

Alabama linebacker prospect Trey DePriest likes to stay active | al.com

Under the radar - Decaturdaily.com

Bad news for you obsessives out there, tracking the university's plane is no longer an option.

Johnston: What’s it going to take to topple mighty SEC? - College football- nbcsports.msnbc.com

Alabama Preview: Will Nick Saban Have The Tide Ready To Repeat? | The ACC and SEC Blog

In which I answered a few questions.