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Jumbo Package: Saban is pleased with QBs, Landon Dickerson back to center

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Your latest Crimson Tide news and notes.

Alabama v Mississippi State Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

Happy Monday, everyone. The Tide held their second fall scrimmage. Saban has most of the intel on lockdown, but this is what we have.

The feedback was good regarding the quarterbacks. While Mac Jones had an interception, which it sounds like safety Daniel Wright was responsible for, word is that it was a second straight positive Saturday for Jones after a really strong showing during the Crimson Tide’s simulated game session Sept. 5. Five-star freshman Bryce Young had a touchdown pass of about 50 yards to fellow freshman Javon Baker.

“Those guys have played a lot of football,” offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian said Aug. 18. “These guys are battle-tested, they’ve been in a lot of big games, they’ve competed against the best opponents, so we got a lot of faith in them and we’re fortunate.

“I’ve been in seasons where we haven’t had such a veteran offensive line, so with this group of guys we’re looking forward to those guys being the bell cows in the run game and the pass game, and from a leadership standpoint offensively.”

Alabama began camp last month with Owens at center and Dickerson at right guard. By early September, Dickerson was practicing at center and appeared to be the snapper in Saturday’s second and final scrimmage. The team’s practices and scrimmages have been closed to reporters because of COVID-19 regulations.

The virus protocols have to be a pain in the ass, but Saban would probably do it every year if it meant he got to shut them media out even more than usual. He doesn’t mind talking to them, but he’d refer they never see anything at all.

Good to see that the QBs are doing well, and it seems to simply be a matter of which OL combination is best out of many good options. Four spots are set, though it’s still possible that Dickerson ends up at guard. Ekiyor was reportedly running with the ones at right guard Saturday.

The new AP poll is out sans the Big Ten, and the SEC occupies three of the top five slots and six of the top ten. Here’s the list with Alabama at #2 behind Clemson, and this line that you never thought you’d read.

• No. 17 Miami also garnered some support in the preseason. The Hurricanes join on the strength of a 31-14 victory Thursday against Conference USA contender UAB.

Emphasis mine. Pardon me for a moment.

Sorry about that.

Henry Ruggs III got his first big catch out of the way.

Henry turned his ankle in the first half but was able to return.

The Big Ten did not have a vote as reported, but according to the Detroit Free Press, they are having one soon.

Guess we’ll see. Meanwhile, remember Ohio State CB Shaun Wade, whose dad led the parent protests of the decision to cancel? Welp, he is now opting out for the NFL Draft.

No idea whether the failure to vote over the weekend on a concrete plan led to this decision, but the whole thing is a clown show.

Last, a couple of former Tide players keyed an upset of Kansas State on Saturday.

Former Crimson Tide quarterback Layne Hatcher and ex-Alabama tight end Giles Amos were two of the important figures during Arkansas State’s upset 35-31 win at Kansas State Saturday afternoon.

Hatcher, who transferred to Arkansas State last year, was 6 of 8 for 61 yards with two touchdown passes while splitting time with starting quarterback Logan Bonner. The second touchdown pass proved to be the game-winner, a 17-yard scoring pass with 38 seconds remaining that lifted the Red Wolves of the Sun Belt Conference over a Big 12 program that finished the 2019 regular season 8-4.

Congrats, gents.

That’s about it for today. Have a great week.

Roll Tide.