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QB Situation Next Year

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#1
Tider27

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Firstly, Alabama forum. No trolling, serious Bama discussion going on in here.

**First and only warning**


From a post on another site, this breaks down our options very well.



Blake Sims - Blake is a fourth year junior, and we've seen a good bit of him over the last couple of years. He had a dreadful A-Day game this past April, but his in-game numbers have actually been pretty decent. His career numbers are right at 60% completion percentage, at 11 yards per completion, with two touchdowns and no interceptions.


Blake's throwing mechanics were about as bad as they get in this year's A-Day game, but he seems to have shown a bit of development in this area during live action this year. Of course, it must be considered that Blake hardly ever faces the opponents' first string defense, and has never been in a game when the result was still in doubt. Still, given his experience, Blake is probably the odds-on favorite to start next season as Bama's quarterback.


Alec Morris - Alec is a redshirt freshman (3 star player from Allen, Texas) that has yet to see the field. Considering the fact that the only other eligible player this year (because of redshirts) is Blake Sims, it is really telling that Morris hasn't taken a snap. Unfortunately, at this point, I would be highly surprised to see Morris still on the team this time next year, much less actually captaining the team.


The Mystery Newbloods

Luke Del Rio - Del Rio joined the team as a walk on this past spring, and in the process declined scholarship offers from Oregon State and Oklahoma State. There has been a lot of positive chatter surrounding Del Rio, and it sounds like he might even be the backup this year, if not for the fact that we're trying to redshirt him. At any rate, he's supposedly third on the depth chart right now, and that means you have to think he's at worst right behind Blake Sims when it comes to fighting for the job next spring.


Cooper Bateman - Cooper was a four star player out of Salt Lake City, Utah, and his currently sitting out his freshman year as a redshirt. This is where the "mystery" portion comes into play. Bateman clearly has the credentials, as he is the highest rated quarterback currently on the roster that isn't named "AJ McCarron". However, it seems that Luke Del Rio may have passed him, despite the fact that they both arrived early to go through spring ball. While Del Rio seemingly has the early lead, it's still way too early to count out Bateman, and we may end up with a pretty close battle between those two, as they struggle to simultaneously top each other and overtake Blake Sims.


Parker McLeod - McLeod was a three star quarterback out of Marietta, Georgia, and is currently sitting out his freshman year as a redshirt. If you want to predict Parker's career path, go read up on Phillip Ely. They both came in very lightly regarded, no one expected either to actually be the "guy" at any point in their career, and within two years, they're somewhere else. If McLeod is in Tuscaloosa this time next year, I'll be surprised. If he's there two years from now, I'll be utterly amazed. I really don't mean that as a slight to McLeod, it's just that the position is frankly overcrowded at the moment, and there is just little chance that he'll ever see the field at this rate.


David Cornwell - Cornwell is a four star recruit from Norman, Oklahoma that has committed to sign with the Tide this February. I mentioned Bateman's credentials, and had to qualify it with the phrase "currently on the roster" because of this guy. Cornwell's credentials are even better than AJ's were coming out of high school, as he is considered anywhere from the 2nd to 5th best pro-style QB, and is roughly one of the top 50 players in the nation. For comparison, according to Rivals, AJ was the 7th best pro-style QB and was the 128th best player in the nation.


One major caveat here - Cornwell tore his ACL a few of weeks ago, and is thus sitting out the rest of his senior season. Reports are that he still intends to enroll early, and should be ready to participate in spring ball. While Cornwell certainly has the look of the quarterback of the future, I'm not counting on him getting his number called next year. The fact that he's coming off of an injury, that he's a true freshman, and that we have a number of more experienced guys already in the queue makes me think it's unlikely.

The Wildcard

If I'm being completely honest, this is the category that was the impetus for writing this piece. Ladies and Gentlemen, I present to you, The Wildcard...


Jacob Coker

If you haven't heard of him, Jacob Coker is currently a redshirt sophomore at Florida State University.
Coker is a quality player, that has decent experience, and good mobility. And if rumors are to be believed, that mobility extends beyond the playing field and may include an ability to freely transfer wherever he likes after this December. The rumor is that Coker is set to graduate in December, and will thus be eligible to transfer anywhere as a grad student without having to sit a year.
Now, if you're up to date on your SEC rules, you may be asking, "Wait a minute. I thought the SEC outlawed the graduate-exception rule that allowed a player to come in and play immediately after graduating?" Well, here's the thing, that rule applies to four year graduates, meaning graduates that only have one year of eligibility left. Graduates that have two years left? Best I can tell from the SEC rule book, that's still fair game.

14.1.15 Two-Year Eligibility. A student-athlete who, upon enrollment at the certifying institution, has less than two years of eligibility remaining, is not eligible for financial aid, practice or competition at the member institution.

I got in touch with Bud Elliot from Tomahawk Nation to ask him about the Jacob Coker situation, and while he wasn't able to comment on the veracity of the rumors that Coker is set to graduate this December (citing educational privacy issues), he was able to give us an assessment of Coker, since they evaluated him for months while Coker and Jameis Winston competed for the starting role:

Coker has one of the strongest arms in all of college football. He's a quiet kid, but is well liked. And he's surprisingly mobile for his excellent size. He battled in the fall after being injured in the spring. He did outplay Winston at times, though some of that had to do with Winston screwing around and throwing picks.
If he can for sure graduate, I think Bama will be an option.

Now, we still don't know for certain that Coker is going to graduate. I couldn't find any official confirmation of that. If he were to graduate and transfer, though, that could provide an incredible bridge for the quarterback position. Plug a talented and experienced Coker in for the next two years, and then let the super-talented trio (Bateman (RS SO), Del Rio (RS SO), and Cornwell (RS FR)) duke it out.
Sound like a plan?


Oh yeah, did I mention that Jacob Coker went to high school at Saint Paul's Episcopal in Mobile, the same high school where AJ played? Who better to follow AJ McCarron's footsteps than the guy that has already done it once?

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#2
Tider27

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My thoughts on the possible options...

I don't think Blake Sims will be starting next season, point blank. He will be a nice change up at QB for us, but that's about it.

Up until his injury, I was thinking Cornwell had a nice shot to come into the spring and compete for the job. He still may do so, I just don't think he'll be 100%. I really like his size and touch on the ball, surveys the field very nicely. IMO, Cornwell is our future, but that's a wild guess at this point.

I've been pro-Morris as well for a while now, I'm obviously a fan of size with a great arm. I've been hoping he would have some notable game action, but I'm also within the beliefs he doesn't have "it". All intents and purposes, that seems to be what the staff is saying currently.

Del Rio is solid, very solid. Quite honestly I can't say any real negatives outside of his size, he would certainly need to bulk up a bit. The most important thing is that he throws a good ball on the run, rolling out. He has a very strong arm and if he could prove to throw a nice accurate ball on intermediate passes, he could very well be our starter next season.

It's nice to have these kind of problems, but we really won't know much until after the Spring. Even then it may be a bit of a question mark, but it's a little exciting as well. I don't expect us to be as balanced next year, but we also didn't expect too much from our passing game in 2011.

Jacob Coker is an interesting option though, I haven't really thought of that option. We'll have to revisit that if it actually develops.

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#3
zartan

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Well, I think that....

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#4
Matt

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Parker McLeod has the name and bangs to pull it off.  None of the others are even attempting to grow their bangs out long enough to be Bama QB material IMO.  :)

Seriously though, why not go with Sims, all Saban is looking for is someone who wont F things up.  You guys have enough talent at every other position to cover up an average QB.

Edited by Matt, 30 October 2013 - 12:21 PM.


#5
KneesInTheBreeze

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A.J. is going to be very hard to replace.  He's got a lot of athletic ability, but mainly, he's the smartest SOB out there.

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#6
Tider27

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View PostMatt, on 30 October 2013 - 12:20 PM, said:

Parker McLeod has the name and bangs to pull it off.  None of the others are even attempting to grow their bangs out long enough to be Bama QB material IMO.  :)

Seriously though, why not go with Sims, all Saban is looking for is someone who wont F things up.  You guys have enough talent at every other position to cover up an average QB.

I think a lot can be said for the throws we trust AJ to make. In 2008 Bama was very one-dimensional under JPW. With McElroy, although great at times, he was very inconsistent. AJ literally takes a great running game and adds the passing threat we needed, Sims simply can't handle the throws that he can make. I wish he could however, he's very smart with the ball and adds a mobile option we haven't had since Tyler Watts.

We may very well give him a realistic shot, but I'm much happier with a game manager in the form of a pro-style QB, rather than piecing together a dual threat.

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#7
Dawgfan4life24

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I dont think AJ will be very hard to replace with that list of names. AJ looks great because of a beast O-Line. Id like to see how he fairs against an O-Line that isnt worth 52 million dollars. Lol

Hes a solid B IMO. I dont see him being the franchise QB in the NFL


Now the bleacher shots of Katherine Webb, wont be replaced anytime soon.

Edited by Dawgfan4life24, 30 October 2013 - 12:32 PM.

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#8
RodLovly

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i'd be surprised if Sims is the starter next year. My money would be on Del Rio. Seems to fit the Saban qb mold to me.
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#9
Tider27

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View PostDawgfan4life24, on 30 October 2013 - 12:29 PM, said:

I dont think AJ will be very hard to replace with that list of names. AJ looks great because of a beast O-Line. Id like to see how he fairs against an O-Line that isnt worth 52 million dollars. Lol

Hes a solid B IMO. I dont see him being the franchise QB in the NFL


Now the bleacher shots of Katherine Webb, wont be replaced anytime soon.

To be fair, any QB looks great behind a good OL, and great QBs look terrible behind a line that can't block well. While I definitely agree they make him look better, the OL isn't asked to make an accurate throw on a back shoulder, or a well placed ball over a defender.

He's not amazing by any means, he's just good, and good consistently. That's what will be hard to replace, consistence.

Edited by Tider27, 30 October 2013 - 12:56 PM.

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#10
RodLovly

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AJ holds almost every meaningful qb record at Bama..... Yeah, should be no problem to replace. The lack of credit the guy gets is remarkable.
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#11
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Lol I know Coker well. Alabama would do well to get him but he's not as good as aj IMO
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Seriously. A season I will never forget.

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#12
Penguin

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Aj is an A+ qb btw bama fans that think otherwise are idiots.
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Seriously. A season I will never forget.

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#13
Dawgfan4life24

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View PostTider27, on 30 October 2013 - 12:55 PM, said:

To be fair, any QB looks great behind a good OL, and great QBs look terrible behind a line that can't block well. While I definitely agree they make him look better, the OL isn't asked to make an accurate throw on a back shoulder, or a well placed ball over a defender.

He's not amazing by any means, he's just good, and good consistently. That's what will be hard to replace, consistence.

Agreed. Luckily for Bama they have several viable options. Lol

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#14
Brometheus

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I just can't see Sims being the starter next year. I believe we would be VERY one dimensional towards the run. He just can't make the throws we need to make to be a balanced offense. Defenses would stack the line and force him to throw it, which he wouldn't be able to do and I'd see Saban making the change very quickly if he starts Sims next season. Sims won't cut it, i appreciate him sticking around as long as he has but I just don't see him making consistent throws to move the offense. I would feel better about an inexperienced Del Rio, Morris, or Bateman learning on the fly
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Brometheus

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Am I the only one who thinks losing AJ is gonna be a bigger deal than most think? People forget how great it is having a stud quarterback providing stability and consistency to the most important position on the field for 3 straight years. I can see Bama potentially losing 2-3 games next year strictly due to quarterback growing pains. Luckily we'll have alot of playmakers back on offense but still. I could be completely wrong though, AJ was brought along great as a 1st year starter in 2011, granted he had possibly the greatest defense of all time, and hopefully thats what they do with whoever QB is thrown into the fire next year.
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