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Jumbo Package: First workout with David Ballou and Dr. Matt Rhea draws rave reviews

Your latest Crimson Tide news and notes.

NCAA Football: Louisiana State at Alabama John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

Happy Tuesday, everyone. Players are back on campus and able to work with the strength and conditioning coaches. Early returns from the players are glowing.

With understanding, however, there is nothing wrong with looking ahead to a football season, and noting every small step along the journey to get there. So on Monday, when Alabama football players were able to go onto social media and talk about voluntary workouts, the mere discussion of something positive in a team-related setting attracted attention.

“Can’t lie, today’s workout made me realize why I came to (Alabama) in the first place, Bama is Back!!!,” senior running back Brian Robinson Jr. from Hillcrest said via his Twitter account. Teammate Byron Young quickly responded, saying “Facts. @UA_CoachBallou and @ MattRheaPhD are different.”

“Different” is exactly what Saban was looking for. It will be interesting to see what effect these guys have.

Guidelines for practice have been proposed and are expected to be approved.

Teams with seasons starting Labor Day Weekend can begin working with their players in person as early as July 13, at least 25 days before the first permissible preseason practice date. Teams participating in Week 0 games will be able to move the proposed dates up one week in the calendar due to games set for late August. Those schools can begin mandatory workouts as early as July 6.

Players and coaches will be allowed to use a football in drills starting as early as July 24 (July 17 for Week 0 teams) as they run through walk-throughs and meetings totaling 20 hours per week. Preseason practices can begin as soon as Aug. 7 (or 29 days before the team’s first game) for those teams beginning the season over Labor Day Weekend.

Coaches had requested a minimum of six weeks and this timeline provides just that, with two weeks of “walk-throughs and meetings” that will undoubtedly feature 7-on-7 work as the summer usually does. It seems as though the season is likely to start on schedule. Whether fans are in attendance, and how many, is up in the air.

Love this nugget from 247sports’ preview.

There’s no shortage of star talent. Perhaps we’ll get T-Law vs. Fields, Part 2, before the two Heisman frontrunners are off to the NFL. The only player in college football who can cover Ja’Marr Chase resides on his team. But before you go calling him WR1, we’d assume Jaylen Waddle has something to say, albeit quietly.

They are clearly referencing Derek Stingley Jr. as the only player who can cover Chase, but they didn’t bother mentioning Stingley’s father.

What an oversight.

Oh, no.

“I happen to think Alabama’s going to win the National Championship,” Finebaum said. “To me, they just have it together. You can debate the quarterback situation, but you can’t debate too much else. I think this is the best Alabama team they’ve had in a couple of years. And I still feel like (head coach) Nick Saban, while everyone else was scattered from March 12 on, Saban was in the proverbial bunker, trying to figure it out. He was in his office when everyone else was at home. …If someone is going to find an edge, he’ll have it.”

I’ll say it again. Oh, no.

Hale Hentges seems to have found a home in Washington.

“That was the best thing for me,” Hentges said of joining Washington. “It’s a great example that God always has a plan and he’s got our best interest at heart always, and what we think is best for us, God knows better for us. …

“You never know. That’s the awesome truth to this game is you never know where the chips are going to lie. You’ve just got to give your best effort every day, show up ready to work, ready to give your all and let the chips fall where they may and just praise God for another day of playing football. That’s it.”

Hopefully it all works out for him.

Last, Tyrell Shavers has found a home.

Shavers played in 28 games for the Tide the past two seasons but did not record his first catch until last November’s blowout win over Western Carolina. He notched his first carry, for 14 yards, a week earlier at Mississippi State.

The 6-foot-6 Shavers heads to Starkville as a graduate transfer with two remaining years of eligibility.

Best of luck to him. He will have a great chance at a featured role in Starkville.

That’s about it for now. Have a great day.

Roll Tide.