What to look for in A-Day 2022
By WVUA 23 Digital Reporter AJ Holliday
The University of Alabama football team is hosting its annual A-Day game Saturday, an opportunity for fans to get an early look at this years team. The Crimson Tide is looking to make it back to the College Football Playoff National Championship game for the third straight year. Last year Bama was defeated by the Georgia Bulldogs, 33-18.
Last year was still a successful one for the Tide, winning the SEC Championship for the second straight year against Georgia and defeating Cincinnati 27-6, to win the Cotton Bowl Classic. But, when you play for the Crimson Tide, a program with 18 National Championships, the expectation is to win the whole thing.
Bama is losing 11 players to the NFL Draft including Jameson Williams, John Metchie III and Evan Neal. So with key pieces leaving, all eyes turn to coach Nick Saban to see who will replace them with.
Here’s what to look for in A-Day 2022.
Who takes over as WR1 and WR2
With Williams and Metchie both declaring for the draft, Alabama will be without its two best pass catchers from last year. Bama added transfer Jermaine Burton from Georgia and he’s expected to play a pivotal role in the offense this year. Receiver Ja’Corey Brooks, who received a ton of playing time and caught the game-tying pass in the Iron Bowl is expected to be one of the main guys as well. Junior Traeshon Holden is expected to be in the mix, and a dark-horse to watch out for is freshman Aaron Anderson.
Who replaces Christian Harris at linebacker
Christian Harris leaving for the draft has left Bama fans wondering who will play linebacker alongside Henry To’oto’o. To’oto’o played huge and emerged as a leader of the defense in his first year with the Capstone. A name that has floated around to replace Harris is Kendrick Blackshire, sophomore from Duncanville, Texas. Blackshire was rated a four-star coming out of high school and worked his way into a special teams role last season.
Who gets the starting job at running back
The running back position could arguably be the most competitive spot up for grabs. With the addition of Jahmyr Gibbs from Georgia Tech, Bama has a running back who is also a great pass catcher. But Trey Sanders is returning; after missing his first two seasons with injuries, he returned last season and played in 13 games. Jase Mcclellan and Roydell Williams will both be back after having their seasons cut short because of injuries.